I Once Loved A Lass (Orkney Blackening) is available now to listen to on Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, Amazon and other music streaming platforms. It is also available to buy on Bandcamp, which is the best way of supporting artists to create more music.
I Once Loved A Lass is an ancient ballad, also known as The False Bride. The song is told from the perspective of a man who must watch as the woman he loved marries someone else.
There are many variations of the song, which has been adapted by numerous lyricists and musicians over time in the folk tradition. This arrangement by Sikkersnapper originates in a piece of fiddle music, making changes to key and timing and incorporating non-traditional instrumentation including sampled field recordings and synthesizer.
The music video, directed by Orcadian artist Martin Laird, includes imagery derived from the ancient riddle contained within the song lyrics. It also incorporates footage of blackenings and weddings taking place around St. Magnus Cathedral on Broad Street, Kirkwall. A blackening is a Scottish pre-wedding custom where a bride and groom are tarred and feathered and paraded (separately) around town by their wedding parties in the back of a flat-bed truck, before being tied up in a public place such as the Mercat Cross.