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Up Yon Wide and Lonely Glen

Publisher: University Press of Mississippi in association with the Elphinstone Institute, University of Aberdeen, Scotland.

305 pages (approx.), 7 x 10 inches, 80 b&w illustrations, 145 musical scores, 1 map, introduction, appendices, glossary, bibliography, song index, index

Reviews & Features

Journal of Folklore Research - 6th February 2013
The Living Tradition - 12th January 2013
The Scotsman - 2012

The book was shortlisted for the prestigious Ratcliffe Folklore Prize in 2014 and, as we write this in 2017, Alison has been given a 'Special Commendation Award'.

The annual Ratcliffe Prize is given in recognition -"to an individual to the study of Folklore or Folklife in Great Britain and Ireland".


Up Yon Wide and Lonely Glen

Travellers' Songs, Stories and Tunes of the Fetterangus Stewarts

Elizabeth Stewart
Compiled and Edited by Alison McMorland

A collection of musical transcriptions, song lyrics, memoir, stories, and lore from a matrilineal line of famed Traveller balladeers, musicians, and storytellers

"This book is a repository of traditional lore, based on the songs, tunes, tales, and personal reminiscences of Elizabeth Stewart of Fetterangus in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, a leading representative in her generation of the extended Stewart family of Travellers. With more than 150 song texts, along with musical scores, photographs, anecdotes, and tales of family history from the province of Buchan, the heartland of traditional balladry in Lowland Scotland, the volume is a treasure trove for anyone interested in the folk music and culture of Scotland. Alison McMorland has done a brilliant job of presenting the lively conversational prose of a natural storyteller, managing to get this original voice down on paper." - Ruth Perry, Ann Friedlaender Professor, School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"Elizabeth Stewart is an acclaimed singer, pianist and accordionist. She is also the principal inheritor and advocate of her family and their music. Since the 1950s, the Fetterangus Stewarts, including Elizabeth's mother Jean, her uncle Ned, and her aunt Lucy, have had immense musical influence. Lucy in particular became celebrated as a ballad singer and in 1961 Smithsonian Folkways released a collection of her classic ballad recordings that brought the family's music and name to an international audience.

Women have been the great carriers of the folk songs, stories and traditions. This is a woman-to-woman book by Elizabeth Stewart, a remarkable Traveller singer and storyteller and her family's rich musical heritage, created in collaboration with the exceptional singer and folklorist Alison McMorland. This proves to be the perfect combination. It is a labour of love and friendship enriched and validated by their communal knowledge." - Peggy Seeger

"Alison McMorland gives the Scots Traveller singer and storyteller Elizabeth Stewart a dynamic, literary voice: with unobtrusive scholarship she has created a book of value to all interested in the power of song." - Timothy Neat writer and film maker

"This collection will be greatly welcomed by anyone interested in Travellers and Scottish studies in general, as well as performers, instrumentalists, and singers. The narrative avoids the folksiness of popular accounts of traditional singers and Travellers, and the many stories of second sight and encounters with the supernatural are set in a broad network of cultural practices. Stewart's repertoire is rich with ballads, lyrics, Music Hall songs, children's rhymes, parodies and often be-littled Victorian sentiment. This is an ambitious and wide - ranging collection which is not only an exemplary personal narrative but will form one of the fullest repertoires of a Traveller ever published, and extend in many ways our understanding not only of this well known family but of Traveller culture as a whole." - Gerald Porter, University of Vaasa, Finland

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  This page updated: 17/10/2017 08:45:27