On Springthyme SPRCD 1039
Jock learned this masterpiece from the singing of the great John Strachan who sang it accompanying himself on concertina. The song was included in Norman Buchan's influential 101 Scottish Songs published in 1962 and is in the Greig-Duncan Folk-Song Collection (GD 343) under the title Jock o Rhynie. An old man, William Forsyth, told Greig thet he 'remembered as a boy his mother sing Jock o Rhynie and this would take the song back to say 1830.' The farmer at Mains o Rhynie (in the high glens of Auchindoir in Strathbogie about 8 miles south of Huntly) from 1830 until his death in 1851 was John Gordon and he was known as 'Jock o Rhynie' but there may have been earlier Jocks at Rhynie and the song could well be earlier. He is said to have denied his work was 'ill to work' although he admitted that Rhynie's work was 'very hard.'
Brian McNeill - fiddle; Gordon Duncan - cauldwind pipes
Jock: John Strachan was never bettered at this song about the hand shearin days before the reaper made short work of it. This young man's first shearin wis an unhappy experience, wages were sma and it wis a hungry place and the farmer's laws were double strict. Folk think o Rhynie as being 'My God, thats a wild place, there canna be much growin up there.' It's hilly and there's a lot a sheepie grun, but it's (also) some o the finest corn growin country that ever wis.
c p 1996 Springthyme Records : www.springthyme.co.uk