Donald MacPherson laid to rest

Published: May 31, 2012
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Approximately 100 people paid their last respects to Donald MacPherson, the legendary piper who died on April 21st in his ninetieth year. The service was held in Edinburgh at Mortonhall Crematorium at 2 pm on May 2, 2012.

One of MacPherson’s longtime pupils, Iain Speirs, provided the entry music on the pipes with a rendition of “Lord Lovat’s Lament” as guests filed in.

The  traditional hymn, “Will Your Anchor Hold,” was played – a piece connected with the Boy’s Brigade, paying  tribute to MacPherson’s boyhood membership in the group, and  a recording of “Rhapsody in Blue” was played for the great piper’s affinity for George Gershwin’s music  and his fondness for playing the harmonica.

Several recordings of Donald MacPherson were part of the service, including a selection of light music and the ground of “The Big Spree.” A recording of MacPherson performing his composition “The Love of My Life” with the Kirkintilloch Pipe Band was also played.

Among the high profile pipers who attended the ceremony were Murray Henderson, Hugh MacCallum, Allan MacDonald, Colin MacLellan, Roddy MacLeod, Willie McCallum and Robert Wallace.

Donald Macpherson was one of the greatest Highland pipers in history, with prodigious competitive records that include nine Clasps at the Northern Meeting and 15 Senior Piobaireachd titles at the Argyllshire Gathering. He was the composer of several now-standard tunes, including the jig, “The Curlew.”

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TIP OF THE DAY
Mid-sections: Setting the instruments at evenly pitched intervals doesn’t constitute tuning whatsoever and is no substitute for finely tuned instruments playing carefully voiced phrases that replicate or counter melodic passages.
Scott Currie, SC Drumming, Uddingston, Scotland