Music Inspired by Orkney's People & Places

by Hilary de Vries

An Orkney Sampler

On sale at Boarstone Publishing


Also available from:

The Reel, Kirkwall

The Orcadian Bookshop

Ward Hill video image

'There are some great wee tunes in this book''

Ivan Drever, musician, singer'songwriter


'I was immediately taken with the Egilsay Waltz and by A Meeting With Magnus''

The Living Tradition


'give it time and attention and its secrets emerge'

Pete Stewart, musician


An Orkney Sampler tune book cover

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A collection of music and song inspired by the landscape, seascape and skies of Orkney. From windswept beaches to cups of tea in the Peedie Kirk, slow waltzes to tunes with lively rhythms, this book brings over 20 of her tunes together to share some of the magic that is Orkney.


The title of the book comes from the idea of it being like a sampler; a musical patchwork of her experiences in Orkney all brought together under one cover.


One of these experiences was a visit to Ward Hill on Hoy. She'd gone to see the Dwarfie Stane, but it was the nearby Ward Hill that caught her attention and made a big impression. Later on during her stay she found herself writing a tune and it was clear it was Ward Hill and the surrounding landscape that inspired it.


Bill Taylor, harpist, says about the music, 'When I play them I hear the call of a bird, waves slapping against a boat and the feet of dancers at a ceilidh.' And John Moar of the Orkney Fiddle and Accordion Club describes the tunes as 'delightful'.


'It always pleases me greatly to see music coming from or inspired by Orkney,' says Ivan Drever, the Orcadian singer/songwriter and musician.  'I know it certainly has done for me over the years. There are some great wee tunes in this book of Hilary`s and I hope you enjoy it and maybe find some inspiration too.'


The Shell Boat, The Egilsay Waltz, The Salt & the Spray, The Earl & the Bishop, Skaill House, The Curlew's Call, Ward Hill, The Peedie Kirk Waltz, Cathy's Tune, Jack & Helen, A Meeting With Magnus, The Round Church, The Otter Stone, Hall of Clestrain, Sailing to St.Margaret's Hope, Ivan & the Speedboat, Howie Nicol Firth, A Handful of Heifers, The View From the Brae, The Mermaid's Tale, The Dancing Waves of Birsay, An Orphir Lass, Sailhouse Bay

© Hilary de Vries 2020                   
Hilary de Vries