More about this song
The most universally famous song associated with Robert Burns, the poet first sent 'Auld Lang Syne' to his friend and Patron Mrs Frances Dunlop (1730-1815) in 1788. In this letter the poet praised 'Auld Lang Syne' as an old song.
Likewise, in a letter to George Thomson dated September 1793, the poet claimed that he collected the song by noting it down from an old man's singing. It was eventually published in James Johnson's Scots Musical Museum in 1796.
It is important to remember, however, that Burns frequently amended and improved old songs that he collected prior to their publication. Therefore, it remains likely that Burns played a significant part in shaping this particular version of the song.
'Auld Lang Syne' is an extremely nostalgic and sincere expression of friendship. It is for this reason that people all over the world sing this song at social gatherings and most famously on Hogmanay as they reflect on times past and welcome the New Year.