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Blackhall, Andro (1535/6–1609), composer, is earliest known as a canon of the Augustinian abbey of Holyrood, Edinburgh. Following the dissolution of the monastery during the Scottish Reformation of 1559/60 he pursued a career in the reformed church as minister in the nearby churches of ...

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Drysdale, (George John) Learmont (1866–1909), composer, was born on 3 October 1866 at 37 George Street, Edinburgh, the youngest of the three children of Andrew Drysdale (1831–1918), builder, and his wife, Jane Elspeth Learmont (1827–1909), who was descended from the border poet Thomas the Rhymer...

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Dun, Finlay (1795–1853), composer and violinist, was born on or before 24 July 1795 in Aberdeen, the son of Barclay Dun (1771–1843/1844?), a dancing-master, and his wife, Helen (b. 1777), the daughter of John Duthie and his wife, Bathie. He was a nephew of ...

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Nathaniel Gow (1763–1831) by John Kay © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Gow, Nathaniel (1763–1831), fiddler and composer, was born on 27 May 1763 at Inver, near Dunkeld, Perthshire, and baptized at Little Dunkeld two days later, the fourth of the five sons of Niel Gow (1727–1807) and his first wife, Margaret Wiseman. The date of his birth, which has often been given wrongly, is established by the baptismal register for ...

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Niel Gow (1727–1807) by Sir Henry Raeburn Scottish National Portrait Gallery

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Gow, Niel (1727–1807), fiddler and composer, was born at Inver, by Dunkeld, Perthshire, on 22 March 1727, the son of John Gow and his wife, Catherine McEwan. He married Margaret Wiseman presumably before 1759; they had five sons, including the fiddler Nathaniel Gow...

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See Gow, Nathaniel

Article

Kinloch, William (fl. 1582), composer, is of unknown parentage. Nothing certain is known of his life, although he has been plausibly identified as a musician within the circle of James Lauder, himself a musician in the service of Mary, queen of Scots, and later of ...

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MacKenzie, John Bàn (c. 1797–1864), piper and composer, was born at Achilty, near Strathpeffer, Ross-shire. One of a family of at least three sons and one daughter, he was probably the eldest son of William MacKenzie, farmer, and his wife, Mary MacKay. The births of the children were not registered. ...

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Park, John (1804–1865), Church of Scotland minister and composer, was born in Greenock, Renfrewshire, on 14 January 1804, the son of John Park of the White Hart inn and Old Tontine Hotel, and his wife, Mary Weir. He attended school in Greenock and ...

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Peacock, Francis (1723/4–1807), dancing-master and musician, was possibly born in or near York, although precise details of his birthplace are unknown. He studied dancing under Desnoyer, later dancing master at George III's court. In 1747 he was recommended to Aberdeen as 'a capable master … of a discreet and moral character' (...

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Reid [formerly Robertson], John (1722?–1807), army officer and composer, was probably born on 2 February 1722 at Inverchroskie, near Kirkmichael, Perthshire, the eldest of the three sons of Alexander Robertson of Straloch (c.1695–1781?) and his wife, Susan or Susanna (...

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John Reid (1722?–1807) attrib. George Watson, 1805 courtesy of the University of Edinburgh's Collections

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Smith, Robert Archibald (1780–1829), composer, was born on 16 November 1780 in Reading, the only surviving child of Robert Smith, a silk weaver, and his wife, Ann Whitcher. His father, from East Kilbride, Lanarkshire, had been a silk weaver in Paisley, but left ...

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Thomson, John (1805–1841), composer, eldest son of Revd Andrew Mitchell Thomson (1779–1831) and his wife, Jane Carmichael (d. 1840), was born at Sprouston, near Kelso in the Scottish borders on 28 October 1805. Although initially trained for the law, he was brought up in a household which valued music highly. His father, who was minister of ...