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The great and celebrated 18th-century Scottish poet, Robert Burns, wrote often of love-both joyful and sorrowful, as is the case here. In love himself at the age of sixteen and married at eighteen to his "bonie Jean," his short life was fille with unhappines as he struggled to make out a meager living.

Some of his best-known poems were conceived as lyrics to be sung to the tunes of pre-existing Scottish airs, in an effort to preserve the old melodies. The Banks o' Doon was one of these, published in 1792 in a collection of songs.

While the melody used in this setting is entirely new, it never-the-less is somewhat reminiscent of an old Scottish air. The instrumental obligato underscores the great poignancy of Burns' lyrics. For treble voices in three parts (SSA), violin and piano.

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