The Hash O’ Bennagoak


New digital download single, oot noo…hh’ aye!

The song was written by George Smith Morris. (1878-1958.) AKA “The Buchan Chiel”

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I remember my late grandpa singing the Hash O’ Bennagoak tune. He knew all the words but none of the notes. He always claimed that he must have been very musical, as none of it had ever came out of himself yet.

GS Morris wrote many Buchan bothy ballad cornkisters. Such as “Aikey Brae” and “A Pair O’ Nicky Tams”

In the book published by James Kerr Bennagoak is spelled ‘Bennagok’ and ‘Bennagak’, I have used the more familiar spelling Bennagoak as it seems to be the wider used one. I’m not sure which would be the correct. I’ve seen it mentioned that there was a grand farm by the name of Belnagoak and it’s also likely to be made up.

Here’s an interesting quote below I found on t’internet taken from a Malinky album. Here’s a link to the page with the quote.

Written by George Smith Morris (1876-1958), composer of many popular 20th-century stage bothy ballads known as ‘cornkisters’, and recorded by him in August 1931 for the Beltona label. These are usually more humorous and satirical than traditional bothy ballads composed in the mid-19th century. A ‘hash’ can mean a crowd and in this sense refers to the numbers of pairs of hands employed on a large farm. While it has been suggested that Bennagoak is somewhat fictionalised, the Ordnance Survey name books of 1865-1871 note that Belnagoak, near Methlick in Aberdeenshire, “Applied to a large superior farm with commodious offices attached. The property of the Right Honourable the Earl of Aberdeen”, so there is every chance Morris was satirising this grand establishment. Note, this is a comic song—there is no pier at Foggieloan (the local name for Aberchirder), it being some nine miles inland!