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Roddy MacMillan


Chorus :
I will go, I will go,
When the fighting is over
To the land o' McLeod
That I left tae be a soldier.
I will go, I will go.
When the King's son came along
He called us a' thegither,
Saying, 'Brave Highland men,
Will ye fight for my father?'
I will go, I will go.
When we came back to the glen,
The winter was turning,
Our goods lay in the snow,
And our houses were burning.
I will go, I will go.
I've a buckle on my belt
A sword in my scabbard
A red coat on my back
And a shilling in my pocket
I will go, I will go.
When they put us all on board
The lasses were singing
But the tears came tae their eyes
When the bells started ringing
I will go, I will go.
When we landed on the shore
And saw the foreign heather
We knew that some would fall
And would stay there for ever
I will go, I will go.
Footnote : The threat to disband some of the remaining Scottish Regiments in the 'English' army reminded me of this moving song by the late Roddy MacMillan which is now firmly entrenched in the Scottish Folk Tradition. So much so that many people think it is an old traditional song. An outstanding actor, Roddy MacMillan was also an excellent songwriter and playwright. He was from a Highland background and 'I Will Go' sums up the experience of many Scots who whilst risking life and limb in the service of England were being betrayed back home in Scotland as landowners pursued a policy of clearing the Glens of people to make way for sheep.


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