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Westmoreland Waltz

michael sam wild

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I put a post on melodeon.net asking for some background on this tune and got a nice answer from Greg Stephens of The Boat Band on whose record I heard it

Barry Callaghan's book says it had no name in the book but Greg says it was called Westmoreland and was in 6/8 time from Walsh's book of 1718 before the waltz as a dance was introduced. Greg's band slowed it down and called it WW. It's a lovely slow waltz and a pretty ordinary Jig (IMHO)!

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It was in the 1686 Edition of Playford's Dancing Master where it was also called "Westmoreland". It was in 6/4 time in Playford - which can be thought of as similar to 6/8 but with the note values all being doubled.


Although it predates the Waltz, when the Waltz became fashionable quite a number of existing tunes were adapted to the Waltz. This is quite likely what happened with Westmorland.


It's a lovely tune which I play quite a lot - usually on the tenor recorder which it fits beautifully and I have also heard it played on Northumberland pipes. I first heard it on a York Waits CD.

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.......................just out of interest here it is in 6/4 time

I've taken it from the Complete Country Dance Tunes.It's almost identical............but bar 5 is a bit odd ?

Lovely tune,eh. I'm surprided it's not more widely popular...maybe it will be now it's on the Hardcore English Cd etc.


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If you are looking for a perfect companion for the Westmoreland waltz, try the Sommervals






X: 1

T: Sommarvals

M: 3/4

L: 1/8

R: waltz

K: Gmaj

|:d2c2|B3A G2|A4F2|G6|E3FE2|D2G2A2|c4B2|B2A2G2|A2d3c|

B3A G2|A4F2|G6|E3FE2|D2E2G2|G4F2|G6|G2:|




Recorded by Frifot (Per Gudmundson, Ale Moller, Lena Willemark) on the album Jarven. Also recorded by Old Swan Band and Andrew & Margaret Watchorn

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Nice tune ,Dave.

I've been trying this one,called "Life in the Trenches", to see if it works.It's nice and minory (!) I found it in some on-line ABC collection, which one I now forget.It said it's English but is obviously French in feel.

It also stirs some vague recollection of a theme for a TV programme of my youth . Any ideas ?


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