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Gatherer's Forth Collection

Songs and Ballads of Dundee

This is a classic collection of over seventy folk songs and ballads, accompanied by extensive notes and carefully chosen pictures, that illustrates key periods in the history of Dundee. From the days of the great clipper fleets and the hard life o the whaling ships, the rise and fall of the jute mills and the women who supplied their workforce, the mass unemployment of the 1930s and the slum clearances of the 1960s and 70s, it provides a unique picture of the life and times of one of Scotland's most colourful and distinctive communities.

At the same time it is also the story of the great characters of Dundee, from Graham of Claverhouse ("Bonnie Dundee") to William McGonagall and the elusive Piper o' Dundee, as well as the rich tapestry of worthies and rogues of the streets.

Full of humour and life, the songs, anecdotes and stories capture the energy and character of Dundee in a way that no narrative can, and the result is a fascinating picture of Dundee and its people over the centuries. This should become the definitive collection. For a more detailed list of the songs featured in Songs and Ballads of Dundee, click here.

Unfortunately the book is out of print at the moment. I am exploring the possibilities of republishing it either in physical form or as an eBook, but in the meantime, copies come up periodically on eBay and the like, so it might be worth checking.


  • As I Cam Ower Strathmartine Mains
  • Auld Maid In a Garret
  • Back o' Reres Hill, The
  • Balaena, The
  • Banks o' Sweet Dundee, The
  • Banks of Sweet Dundee II, The
  • Beefcan Close, The
  • Betsy Bell
  • Betsy o' Dundee
  • Beware of an Aberdonian
  • Blin' Hughie
  • Blind Mattie
  • Bonnets of Bonnie Dundee, The
  • Bonnie Annie Livieston
  • Bonnie Broughty Ferry Fisher Lass
  • Bonnie Laddie, Hieland Laddie
  • Bonnie Susie Cleland
  • Bonnie Wee Lochee Lass
  • Broughty Wa's
  • Bureau, The
  • Cadgers o' Dundee
  • Constable of Dundee, The
  • Cooper o' Dundee, The
  • Donal Don
  • Donald o' Dundee
  • Down By the Yeaman Shore
  • Dundee Jail
  • Dundee Lassie, The
  • Dundee Once More
  • Dundee Weaver, The
  • Dundee Whaler, The
  • Fizzy Gow's Tea Party
  • Foondry Lane
  • From Sweet Dundee
  • How Cauld Those Winds
  • I'll Awa Hame
  • Indygo Blue
  • Iron Horse, The
  • Jamie Frae Dundee
  • Jenny Marshall's Candy O
  • Jockey's Escape from Dundee
  • Johnny Shaw's a Decent Chap
  • Jute Mill Song, The
  • Killiecrankie
  • Lady Dundee's Lament
  • Lang Awa Ship, The
  • Lochee
  • Magdalene Green, The
  • Old Dundee Town Once More
  • Old Polina, The
  • Overgate, The
  • Pear Tree, The
  • Piper o' Dundee, The
  • Road to Dundee, The
  • Roon-Moo'ed Spade, The
  • Rose o' Dundee
  • Sailor Laddie I, The
  • Sailor Laddie II, The
  • Sandy's Mill
  • Scots Callan o' Bonnie Dundee
  • Skipper o' Dundee, The
  • Spinner's Wedding, The
  • Stobbie Parliament Picnic
  • Strike Song, The
  • Tay Bridge Disaster, The
  • There Cam a Laddie Frae the North
  • Tired o' Workin'
  • Wife o' Denside, The
  • We're Bound to St Peter's
  • Wife o' Dundee, The
  • Worthies of Dundee I
  • Worthies of Dundee II
Published: 1986, 2000
Pages: 168
Songs: 80
Size: Imperial

Nigel Gatherer, Crieff, Perthshire |