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Choral ~ General ~ A Cappella



“Loch Lomond”

(An arrangement of the Scottish folk song)



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SCORING:  SATB a cappella (frequent div.), with solos for 2 sop. and 1 bar.

DURATION:  ca. 4:30   —   DIFFICULTY:  3/5   —   PAGES IN PDF SCORE:  18

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This is one of three folk songs from Scotland that I've arranged (the other two are “Afton Water” and “My Love Is Like a Red, Red Rose”). Scotland has produced many lovely folk melodies, known for their simplicity of expression and depth of beauty.

“Loch Lomond” is my favorite of all folk songs, so I was excited to finally arrange it. There's something very touching about the story of the two lovers who “will never meet again,” which inspired me to write an arrangement imbued with yearning and heartache.

I couldn't resist adding a brief, heartfelt coda in which a solo soprano repeats the phrase “But me and my true love will never meet again” — with the words “will never meet again” sung lingeringly over a suspended chord that fades into nothing.

The photo below shows a view of Loch Lomond from Duncryne Hill.

Loch Lomond

Traditional Scottish text

Complete text:

(By yon bonny banks and bonny braes,
where the sun shines bright on Loch Lomon'.)

By yon bonny banks and by yon bonny braes,
Where the sun shines bright on Loch Lomon',
Where me and my true love were ever wont to go,
On the bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomon'.

      O you take the high road, and I'll take the low road,
      And I'll be in Scotland afore you.
      But me and my true love will never meet again,
      On the bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomon'.

(The sun shines bright, the sun shines bright on Loch Lomon'.)

'Twas there that we parted in yon shady glen,
On the steep, steep side of Loch Lomon',
Where in purple hue, the Highland hills we view,
And the moon comin' out in the gloamin'.

      O you take the high road, and I'll take the low road,
      And I'll be in Scotland afore you.
      But me and my true love will never meet again,
      On the bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomon'.

(By yon bonny banks and by yon bonny braes.)

The wee birdies sing and the wild flowers spring,
And in sunshine the waters are sleeping;
But the broken heart, it kens no second spring,
Though the woeful may cease from their greeting.

      O you take the high road, and I'll take the low road,
      And I'll be in Scotland afore you.
      But me and my true love will never meet again,
      On the bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomon'.

(By bonny banks and bonny braes,
the sun shines bright on Loch Lomon'!
You take the high road, and I'll take the low road.
But me and my true love will never meet again.)

Dr. Leonard Ratzlaff, choral conductor:

“Our singers have very much enjoyed singing your arrangement of 'Loch Lomond'! It is beautifully balanced and harmonized, and the solo lines are featured quite effortlessly in the texture. It has received a warm response from multiple audiences.”

— Dr. Leonard Ratzlaff, Professor of Choral Music at the University of Alberta, where he supervises one of Canada's most established graduate choral conducting programs