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Piping Live! Day 4 – Brown reigns at Pipe Idol; that’s the rain on

Published: August 15, 2014

PipingLive2014_logoThe fourth day of the Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival came with sun, clouds, wind, drizzle and a 15-minute torrential downpour that turned the Buchanan Street pedestrian walk into a cascading river.

With the qualifying round of the Grade 1 contest on the Friday, the Thursday seemed like the Friday, the Northern Ireland and Ireland bands arriving and circulating around. Field Marshal Montgomery timed their outdoor practice perfectly in terms of missing the rain, and large crowds gathered to see them do their FMM thing at Kelvingrove Park.

Calum Ian Brown competing in the final of Pipe Idol.

The final qualifying round of Pipe Idol saw James Dyson of Nova Scotia make the final, held later in the day in the auditorium of the National Piping Centre. Dyson joined other qualifiers Calum Ian Brown, Ben Murray and Calum Watson, and it was Brown who was named 2014 Pipe Idol winner, taking home a bunch of prizes, including a set of Fred Morrison Reelpipes.

_PipingLive2014_Day4_ (1)_smallThe pipes|drums “Little Supper” was scarfed up quickly by hungry festival-goers, who munched and swilled to the sound of the Grade 2 Portland Metro Pipe Band, practicing/performing in the usual spot outside the NPC.

Boraraig

The day wrapped with a great performance by Calum MacCrimmon’s band Boraraig, who split the bill with Rakish Paddy at the New Athenaeum theatre at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

An early night for the sensible, who hit the hay comforted at least by a decent forecast for Friday . . . but the biggest day, Saturday, looking a bit darker with rain predicted for at least part of it.

Rein in the rain, and let the bands reign, we say, as pipes|drums wraps up our daily coverage of Piping Live! and now puts attention on the World Pipe Band Championships.

Stay tuned!

 

 

Piping Live! Day 3 – sunshine can’t be beaten as festival continues

Published: August 13, 2014

Calum Watson

The third day of the Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival brought a bright but fairly cool day to patrons of the biggest week on the piping and drumming calendar, with crowds starting the day off with a packed turnout for the live debut of Chris Armstrong’s X-Treme drone reeds, launched officially on pipes|drums in late-July.

With the Grade 1 Qualifier moved this year the Friday, an unusual feeling for a Wednesday seemed to seep in, with a palpable wariness and somewhat tempered consumption of beer.

Glasgow Police Drummers rehearsing before the big show.

Over in the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, the Greater Glasgow Police Scotland Pipe Band dedicated most of the day to putting the final touches to their Ceolry show, to be staged in the evening. The band seemed loose and in great spirits, as they and guest musicians and compere John Wilson ran through the two-plus-hours program at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, promoted as always by the Glasgow Skye Association Pipe Band.

Watch for a full pipes|drums review of the concert.

Living piping legend Jack Lee offered up a splendid lunchtime recital at the National Piping Centre’s auditorium, and the penultimate round of Pipe Idol went to Peoples Ford-Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia member Calum Watson, who will play in the four-piper final on Thursday.

New York Metro gives the crowds a tune on Glasgow’s famed Sauchiehall Street.

Later that evening, a fine recital of tunes from World War I was delivered inside the Centre, while outside Grade 1 Dowco-Triumph Street held an open practice.

Dowco-Triumph Street at their 6 pm National Piping Centre open practice.

A reminder to pipes|drums Magazine readers to get in their Pick The Six ballots before the 6 pm GMT Thursday deadline if they want to have a chance for the winner-take-all prize package worth $2,500, compliments of pipes|drums advertisers.

Tensions are sure to rise ever higher on Thursday, but at least the forecast is good for the next three days, including Thursday evening when pipes|drums buys the first 50 a burger and a beer at our “Little Supper” at 6 pm at the Piping Centre.

Here’s a video of some highlights of what we were able to cover from Day 3 of Piping Live! Enjoy!

Piping Live! Day 2 – report from the scenes at a wet Glasgow

Published:

The second day of the Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival brought more overcast skies and rain – about average for Scotland’s biggest city. Undeterred, Piping Live! patrons enjoyed the day as always, packed full of a plethora of mostly free events.

The day culminated with the International Quartets Competition, a nerve-racking event that makes competing at the World Championships a walk in the park, which, come to think of it, is what Glasgow Green is. Inveraray & District won the competition for the third time since it became a staple at Piping Live!

We hope that you enjoy our video highlights from Tuesday, August 12th, the second day of Piping Live! and – for Grade 1 bands, anyway – only two days from those two walks in the park.

 

pipes|drums puts on a FREE Little Supper at Piping Live!

Published: August 12, 2014

hamburger“The Lament for the Little Supper” is a terrific shorter piobaireachd, but there will be no lamenting on Thursday, August 14th, when pipes|drums Magazine provides the first 50 people to line up at the National Piping Centre’s front desk to voucher for receive a free pint or soft drink and hamburger outside the National Piping Centre to say thanks to our readers for another great year!

PintThe pipes|drums Little Supper will start at 6 pm on World’s Eve. The first 50 can enjoy a beer and a burger while they listen to the Grade 2 Portland Metro Pipe Band practice outdoors, in what’s hoped to be dry weather.

“Mainly due to the Friday start to the World’s, we weren’t able to hold our usual performance events,” said pipes|drums Editor Andrew Berthoff. “But we wanted to show our appreciation, and came up with The Little Supper concept with the Piping Live! Folks. We hope that the first 50 will enjoy a beer and a burger while they enjoy listening to the Portland Metro band.”

  • The pipes|drums Little Supper
  • What: A free beer or soft drink and burger for the first 50 people only
  • When: Thursday, August 14, 6 pm
  • Where: National Piping Centre
  • Go to: NPC front desk
  • Compliments of: pipes|drums Magazine

We hope to see you there!

Piping Live! Day 1 – video highlights from piping & drumming’s greatest week

Published:

The 2014 Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival officially opened today, and pipes|drums Magazine was on the scene – or, rather, scenes, with multiple venues across the great city of Glasgow hosting events.

We hope that you enjoy this video medley of a few of the events that we were able to get to today, really just part of everything happening on Day 1 of six fantastic days of piping and drumming fun.

Stay tuned to pipes|drums Magazine for more from Piping Live!

Liddell sweeps Masters Solos: Glenfiddich bound

Published: August 11, 2014

Stuart Liddell reflects on winning the Glenfiddich Masters Solo Piping Competition. [photo: Derek Maxwell]

Glasgow – August 11, 2014 – The Masters Solo Piping Competition started off a week of Livestream events from Piping Live!, this one featuring many of the top solo pipers in the world competing in piobaireachd and MSR contests, with the overall winner getting a place in this year’s Glenfiddich Championship. Besides the apparent strong uptake on free streaming video, the National Piping Centre boasted a full hall for the competition, with lots of well-known piping personalities in the audience. Stuart Liddell of Inveraray, Scotland, gained the overall award, and thus an invitation to the Glenfiddich.

Piobaireachd (14 competed)
1st Stuart Liddell, “A Sons Salute to His Parents”
2nd Finlay Johnstone, Glasgow, “The Lament for the Union”
3rd Jack Lee, “War or Peace”
4th Glenn Brown, “MacNeil of Barra’s March”
Judges: William Morrison, Jack Taylor, Andrew Wright

Also competing in the Piobaireachd, but not in the prizes: Callum Beaumont, Brian Donaldson, Faye Henderson, Angus MacColl, Roddy MacLeod, Donald MacPhee, Niall Matheson, William McCallum, Fred Morrison and Gordon Walker.

MSR (19 competed)
1st Stuart Liddell, “Abercairney Highlanders,” “John Roy Stewart,” “The Smith of Chilliechassie”
2nd Roddy MacLeod, “The Clan MacColl,” “Lady Louden,” “The Rejected Suitor”
3rd Willie McCallum, “Crags of Stirling,” “Shepherd¹s Crook,” “The Little Cascade”
4th Gordon McCready, “93rd at Modder River,” “Blair Drummond,” “Cecily Ross”
Judges: Walter Cowan, John Wilson, Bob Worrall

Also competing in the MSR, but not in the prizes: Glenn Brown, Andrew Carlisle, Brian Donaldson, Cameron Drummond, Margaret Dunn, Peter Hunt, Finlay Johnstone, Jack Lee, Angus MacColl, Ian K. MacDonald, Donald MacPhee, Niall Matheson, Simon McKerrell, Fred Morrison, Neil Smith and Gordon Walker.

 

Stuies pick off Perth

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Stuart_Highlanders_full_logoPerth, Scotland – August 10, 2014 – The glorious sunshine on Scotland’s brighter side at North Berwick on Saturday gave way to heaving rain in Perth on Sunday. Several bands entered, including the 78th Fraser Highlanders of Canada and New Zealand’s Canterbury Caledonian, opted not to compete rather than subject their instruments and players to the weather. Ultimately, the Stuart Highlanders proved the RSPBA’s upgrade of the band to Grade 1 accurate, by winning the event. St. Thomas Alumni of Houston adjusted to the weather well, throwing down the Grade 2 gauntlet by taking straight firsts.

StuartHighlanders_Perth2014_med

Stuart Highlanders competing at Perth.

Grade 1 (MSR)
1st Stuart Highlanders (USA) (2,1,1,1)
2nd Vale of Atholl (Scotland) (1,3,3,2)
3rd New Zealand Police (3,2,2,3)
4th St. Thomas Alumni (USA) (Gr2) (5,4,4,4)
5th Mackenzie Caledonian (Gr2) (Scotland) (4,5,6,5)
6th Portland Metro (Gr2) (6,6,5,6)
7th Antwerp & District (Gr2) (Belgium) (7,7,7,7)
Judges: Tom Brown, Jennifer Hutcheon (piping); Willie Black (drumming); John MacInnes (ensemble)

Grade 2 (Medley)
1st St. Thomas Alumni (1,1,1,1)
2nd Mackenzie Caledonian (3,2,3,2)
3rd Portland Metro (2,3,2,3)
4th Antwerp & District (4,4,5,5)
5th Peter Vardy Glenrothes & District (Gr3) (6,6,4,4)
6th Vale of Atholl (Gr3) (5,5,6,6)
Judges: Tom Brown, Jennifer Hutcheon (piping); Willie Black (drumming); John MacInnes (ensemble)

Solo Piping
Open
Piobaireachd
1st William Geddes
2nd Peter McCalister
3rd Allan Russell
4th Martin Kessler
5th Darach Urquhart

March
1st Greig Wilson
2nd Callum Watson
3rd Andrew Donlon
4th Matt Pantaleoni
5th Connor Sinclair

Strathspey & Reel
1st Connor Sinclair
2nd Sandy Cameron
3rd Callum Watson
4th Greig Wilson
5th M Pantaleoni

Jig
1st Connor Sinclair
2nd Callum Watson
3rd Greig Wilson
4th Eric Ouellette
5th Andrew Donlon

B-Grade
Piobaireachd
1st Eric Ouellette
2nd Miael Sicard Cras
3rd George Stewart
4th Sandy Cameron
5th Callum Watson

C-Grade
Piobaireachd
1st Andrew Donlon
2nd Jan Belak
3rd Duncan Beattie
4th Brian Mulhearn
5th Josien Teerlink

Junior
March
1st Harry Richards
2nd Harry McLachlan
3rd Finlay Cameron

Strathspey & Reel
1st Harry Richards
2nd Harry McLachlan
3rd Finlay Cameron

Piping Live! 2014 – p|d’s daily picks for what to hit

Published: August 10, 2014

PipingLive2014_logoThe 2014 edition of Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival is poised to begin on Monday, August 11, with a program of events more diverse than ever. Tens of thousands will descend on Glasgow for the six days of performances and exhibits, culminating with the World Pipe Band Championships on Friday and Saturday, August 15-16, at Glasgow Green.

It’s piping and drumming’s greatest week. There’s nothing else like it. Those who visit Glasgow for all of the six days of Piping Live! are spoiled for choice, and the best thing to do would have been to purchase a £90 Golden Ticket that gets you into just about everything. Considering many people are spending thousands just to get to Glasgow, it’s a fantastic deal.

But for those who have to pick-and-choose what to go to, here is pipes|drums Magazine’s daily picks for the choicest events – to us, anyway – on what we would most look forward to seeing and hearing.

Willie Lawrie – he died for piping in the Great War.

Monday, August 11
Masters Solo Piping Competition – all day, National Piping Centre
Jings, $17 to listen to the world’s very best solo pipers is a terrific deal. Piobaireachd and light music. There are more gold flashing here than at a hip-hop convention.

Pipers of the Great War – A Photographic Exhibition – all day, National Piping Centre
World War I was a horrible thing, but a saving grace was that it produced some of piping’s greatest pieces of light music. Historical photos from the Imperial War Museum and the Scottish National Archives are unveiled for viewing throughout the week.

Continue reading

Inveraray, Boghall lead at North Berwick; Stuarts make a stake

Published:

Inveraray_logoNorth Berwick, Scotland – August 9, 2014 – Inveraray & District and Peoples Ford-Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia won the Medley and MSR in Grade 1 at a warm and sunny North Berwick, one of the last precursors to the World Championships. A number of non-UK bands competed, swelling the numbers, and the Stuart Highlanders of Massachusetts, a topic of a grading controversy earlier in the year, showed that it belongs in the top grade by placing ahead of two established Grade 1 bands in the Medley.

Grade 1
Medley
1st Inveraray & District (Scotland) (1,1,1,2)
2nd Peoples Ford-Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia (Scotland) (2,2,2,1)
3rd 78th Fraser Highlanders (Canada) (3,3,3,3)
4th Stuart Highlanders (USA) (6,4,5,4) (enspref)
5th Police Scotland Fife (Scotland) (4,6,4,5)
6th New Zealand Police (5,5,6,6)
Judges: Jim Campbell, John Wilson (piping); Alex Dudgeon (drumming); Peter Snaddon (ensemble)

MSR
1st Peoples Ford-Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia (2,2,1,1) (enspref)
2nd Inveraray & District (1,1,2,2)
3rd Police Scotland Fife (4,4,3,3) (enspref)
4th 78th Fraser Highlanders (3,3,4,4)
5th New Zealand Police (6,5,5,5)
6th Stuart Highlanders (5,9,7,6)
Judges: Gordon Lawrie, G. Wilson (piping); Joe Noble (drumming); Jim Baxter (ensemble

Grade 2 (13 competed)
1st Portland Metro (USA) (2,2,2,4)
2nd St. Thomas Alumni (USA) (1,1,3,7)
3rd George Watson’s College (Scotland) (Juv.) (4,8,1,1)
4th City of Edinburgh (Scotland) (5,3,4,3)
5th George Heriot’s School (Juv.) (Scotland) (6,4,11,2)
6th College of Piping (Gr3) (Canada (9,6,6,5)
Judges: Gordon Lawrie, G. Wilson (piping); Joe Noble (drumming); Jim Baxter (ensemble)

Lochaber yes more for Willie McCallum

Published: August 9, 2014

McCallum_Willie_Masters_Aug2012_head

Willie McCallum [photo: Derek Maxwell]

Fort William, Scotland – August 9, 2014 – Willie McCallum won all three of the solo piping events for those graded Premier of A by the Competing Pipers Association, including the Lochaber Gold Axe for Piobaireachd. The contest was held at the Nevis Centre.

Senior (11 competed)
Premier & A-Grade
Piobaireachd (An Tuagh Oir – Gold Axe)
1st Willie McCallum, Bearsden, Scotland
2nd Euan MacCrimmon, Inverness, Scotland
3rd John Angus Smith, London
4th Edward McIlwaine, Vancouver
Judges: Alan Forbes, Iain MacFadyen

March (Lochaber Gathering Gold Medal)
1st Willie McCallum
2nd Colin Campbell, Inverness, Scotland
3rd John Angus Smith
4th Peter Hunt, Glasgow
Judges: Alan Forbes, Iain MacFadyen

Strathspey & Reel
1st Willie McCallum
2nd Gordon McCready, Renfrew, Scotland
3rd Colin Campbell
4th Euan MacCrimmon
Judges: Alan Forbes, Iain MacFadyen

B/C Grade (17 competed)
Piobaireachd (An Tuagh Airgead)
1st Matt Pantaleoni, St. Louis
2nd Sandy Cameron, Roy Bridge, Scotland
3rd Ursa Beckford, Clifton, Maine
4th Finlay Clark, Spean Bridge, Scotland
Judge: Rab Wallace

MSR
1st Nick Hudson, Pittsburgh
2nd Andrew Donlon, Germantown, Maryland
3rd Matt Pantaleoni
4th Ursa Beckford
Judge: Rab Wallace

Open (28 competed)
Hornpipe & Jig (Lochaber Gathering Shield)
1st John Angus Smith
2nd Decker Forrest, Skye, Scotland
3rd Gordon McCready
4th Colin Campbell
Judges: Alan Forbes, Iain MacFadyen

Junior
18-Under
Piobaireachd (An Tuagh Umha – Bronze Axe)
1st Brighde Chaimbeul, Kyle of Lochalsh, Scotland
2nd Connor Jardine, Airdrie, Scotland
3rd Ally Weir, Fort William, Scotland
Judge: Archie MacLean

MSR (Lochaber Gathering Salver)
1st Brighde Chaimbeul
2nd Connor Jardine
3rd Ally Weir
Judge: Archie MacLean

Hornpipe & Jig (Clansman Garage Shield)
1st Brighde Chaimbeul
2nd Wallace Dempster
3rd Ally Weir
Judge: Archie MacLean

15-Under
Piobaireachd
1st Donald Stewart, Stewarton, Scotland
2nd Wallace Dempster, Arisaig, Scotland
3rd Finlay Cameron, Roy Bridge, Scotland
Judge: Archie MacLean

MSR
1st Donald Stewart
2nd Wallace Dempster
3rd Finlay Cameron
Judge: Archie MacLean

Hornpipe & Jig (Lochaber Gathering Medal)
1st Donald Stewart
2nd Finlay Cameron
3rd Angus MacPhee, Inverness, Scotland
Judge: Archie MacLean

 

Plug, play, safety squeeze: DC2 reed promises ease-of-use consistency

Published:

David Caldwell

He says it has been 20 years in the making, with painstaking research and development, and now David Caldwell’s DC2 chanter reed is poised to go to market, promising “plug-and-play” readiness, but with the ability to make strength adjustments with no loss in quality.

The Northern Ireland-based Caldwell’s DC1 chanter reed has already been on the market for some time, with the Grade 1 ScottishPower Pipe Band – in which Caldwell is a piper – playing them with success.

He said that the DC2 is “designed to be instantly playable within a few minutes while maintaining a very stable, well-balanced, bright sound. You can adjust the strength of the DC2 quite easily without losing any of the qualities associated with the reed. The reeds have also been played in a number of pipe chanters to ensure consistency and stability.”

Caldwell_DC2reeds_med

Caldwell DC2 reeds (top) feature a seamless brass staple; DC1 copper staple reeds shown below.

While the DC1 reed was a success particularly with top-level pipers, he said that the DC2 is “more flexible for all levels of expertise.” Caldwell said that the reed has been designed to work well in numerous makes of chanters.

The differentiating aspects of the new reed he said include blades precision profiled to work with a seamless brass staple that matches the tone of his copper staple DC1, and the ability to squeeze the blades at their centre to adjust weight and pitch with less risk of damaging the reed.

Caldwell said he will have samples available at the World Championships. He said that he will sell them directly from his own online business, and that in the coming months at least one dealer in each piping-rich country of the world will stock them.

Caldwell has set the price at £10 for each of the DC2 and DC1 model reeds.

As recently as the 1990s, the pipe chanter reed market was domintade by only two or three makers, namely McAllister, Shepherd and Warnock. Over the last two decades reed options for pipers and bands have exploded with dozens of craftsmen entering the market successfully. While competition has grown, average prices have nonetheless steadily increased, but with far better reliability and quality control in products.

Sweetheart win for Liddell at Dunvegan

Published: August 7, 2014

Stuart Liddell [photo: Derek Maxwell]

Dunvegan, Skye, Scotland – August 6, 2014 – Stuart Liddell of Inveraray, Scotland, won the Silver Chanter, held at Dunvegan Castle, in the annual piobaireachd event that features invited pipers. He played “MacCrimmon’s Sweetheart,” assigned to him as one of the compositions attributed to or associated with the MacCrimmon dynasty of hereditary pipers to Clan MacLeod.

Also competing were Callum Beaumont, Bo’ness, Scotland; Michael Elder; Roddy MacLeod, Glasgow; Dougie Murray, Cupar, Scotland; and Innes Smith, Bridge of Allen, Scotland.

Ian MacFadyen awarded the Silver Chanter, the only prize in the event.

Silver_Chanter_2014_med

Participants in the 2014 Silver Chanter (L-R): Roddy MacLeod, Innes Smith, Callum Baumont, Michael Elder,Fear an Tighe Hugh Cheape, Stuart Liddell and Douglas Murray. [photo: Derek Maxwell]

 

 

 

2014 World’s Week Grade 1 practice schedules

Published:

For the twelfth straight year pipes|drums Magazine is pleased to provide readers with a guide to the schedules and locations of practices of Grade 1 bands competing for the World Pipe Band Championship, this year in Glasgow.

All bands are listed, including those that have not yet responded with details. Their information will be added if or as it is provided, so please keep checking back over the days leading up to the World’s.

Readers are advised that schedules may change, and that they should double-check before making travel plans. Bands are listed in alphabetical order.

Readers can assume that bands not responding aren’t keen to have visitors at their practices, but please check back for new additions and changes.

Checking out a few practices could also help with your decision-making for pipes|drums Magazine’s fun Pick The Six contest!

We hope that you find our guide useful, and happy listening!

Continue reading

Glasgow Skye closing in on Pipe-Major search; SFU on for 2015 Pre-World’s Concert

Published: August 6, 2014

GlasgowSkye-logoIn terms of leadership opportunities, it’s one of the most plum roles out there: Pipe-Major of a thriving, ready-made Grade 2 pipe band, with an active membership, prize-winning credentials, and strong and realistic aspirations to return – for good – to Grade 1.

The Glasgow Skye Association Pipe Band announced on July 2, 2014, that its popular leader Kenny MacLeod would step down after the World Championship, and the band has decided that “formal expressions of interest” should be submitted by Friday, August 22nd.

Band Treasurer Dougie Orr has said that so far “a number of potential candidates have made informal enquiries, but as the competition season comes to an end, the band have set a closing date for applicants. We want to have the new P-M appointed immediately after the World’s.”

Following the closing date for applications, the band as a whole will have a meeting on August 28th. MacLeod will not be a part of the discussion of selection process.

Glasgow Skye Pipe-Major Kenny MacLeod exiting with his band at the 2013 World Championships.

“We feel that it was only fair to give any potential candidate time with their existing band to complete the 2014 season prior to making any formal appointment. However, equally, we need to have a new appointment made at the earliest opportunity for the benefit of the band and its members,” Orr added.

Orr, who works as a human resources professional, provided a description of the ideal candidate for the prestigious and demanding role: “A dynamic individual who has the vision and drive to take the band forward to the top of our grade and beyond. The job involves building on the existing team and motivating people to contribute fully to help achieve the band aims. Although it would be good to have someone with a track record, it is also essential that the person can ‘fit in’ and utilize the resources of the band to best effect.”

Expressions of interest should be made directly to Dougie Orr via email.

The Glasgow Skye Association Pipe Band was established in 1968, and has competed in the top grades throughout its existence, including several stints in Grade 1 under MacLeod’s direction. The group is also well known for putting on the annual “Pre-World’s Concert” at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, which this year features the Great Glasgow Police Scotland Pipe Band.

Orr also disclosed that tickets for the “Ceolry” concert are selling well, and compared sales to that of the 2012 Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia Pipe Band concert, which turned into a near-sellout. He said that , in addition to keyboard player Mick MacNeil and singer Rachel Walker, the show will feature musicians Ewan Robertson on guitar, Allan Henderson on keyboards, and James Lyndsay on double-bass.

Orr also said that the 2015 concert will be mounted by the Grade 1 Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, the fourth time that SFU will have taken the prestigious Pre-World’s stage since the early-1990s.

Watt lights up Lorient

Published: August 5, 2014

Robert Watt

Lorient, Brittany, France – August 4, 2014 – Robert Watt won the combined Scottish, Irish and Breton MacCrimmon Trophy event and placed second in the Piobaireachd to have the most overall success at the annual Highland piping competition at the Festival Interceltique Lorient. The MacCrimmon Trophy calls for each contestant to play a separate selection of each of the Celtic country’s music.

MacCrimmon Trophy (Breton, Irish and Scottish overall)
1st Robert Watt, Northern Ireland
2nd Stuart Easton, New Zealand
3rd Andrew Carlisle, Pittsburgh
4th Quentin Meunier, Brittany
5th Alexus Meunier, Brittany
Judges: Pascal Guingo, Yann Cariou (Breton); Andrew Frater, Bruce Hitchings (Scotland); Michael O’hAmhain, Bobby Brannigan (Ireland)

Piobaireachd
1st Fred Morrison, Bishopton, Scotland
2nd Robert Watt
3rd Andrew Carlisle
4th Stuart Easton
5th Andrew Wilson, Northern Ireland
Judges: Andrew Frater, Bruce Hitchings

Callum Beaumont Skye high with rare double at Portree

Published:

Callum Beaumont [photo: Derek Maxwell]

Portree, Isle of Skye, Scotland – August 5, 2014 – Callum Beaumont achieved one of the rarest feats in solo piping, winning both the Dunvegan Medal and the Clasp to the medal on the same day at the Skye Gathering. The Dunvegan Medal calls for entrants to submit tunes accredited to or closely associated with the MacCrimmon piping dynasty of Skye. For good measure, Beaumont also won the 6/8 March. On Wednesday he will defend the Silver Chanter at Dunvegan Castle, which he won in 2013 on his first attempt.

Dunvegan Medal
1st Callum Beaumont, Bo’ness, Scotland, “Lament for the Earl of Antrim”
2nd Matt Pantaleoni, St. Louis, “Lament for Donald Duaghal MacKay”
3rd Brian MacKenzie, “Lament for Mary MacLeod”
4th Martin Kessler, Germany, “Lament for Donald of Laggan”
5th Darach Urquhart, “The King’s Taxes”
Judges: Iain MacFadyen, Malcolm McRae, Iain Morrison

Col. Jock Clasp
1st Callum Beaumont, “Lament for the Children”
2nd Stuart Liddell
3rd Simon McKerrell
Judges: Alan Forbes, Malcolm McRae, Iain Morrison

6/8 March
1st Callum Beaumont
2nd R MacLeod
3rd Niall Stewart
4th Stuart Liddell
5th Jamie Forrester
Judges: Alan Forbes, Dugald MacNeill

Jig
1st Niall Stewart
2nd Jamie Forrester
3rd Callum Beaumont
4th Stuart Liddell
5th Andrew Hall
Judges: Alan Forbes, Dugald MacNeill

Stay tuned to pipes|drums for more results from Skye as they become available.

Pick The Six! It’s back again with $2,500 in prizes for one canny reader!

Published: August 4, 2014

PickTheSix_newsIt’s the biggest contest in piping and drumming that doesn’t involve actual piping or drumming to determine the winner!

Yes, it’s pipes|drums Magazine’s annual Pick The Six contest in which one perceptive (and not a little lucky) reader will win a wonderful selection of prizes contributed by active advertisers, with a combined retail value of almost $2,500!

Check out this year’s prizes! (Be sure to check back, since we might still add more.)

BagpipeLessons.com a one-year membership to the BagpipeLessons.com Studio. Retail price: $240.

Boderiou Bagpipes one Boderiou poly band pipe chanter. Retail price: $205.

Bruce Gandy Music a six-pack of tunes. Retail price: $42.

Chris Armstrong Bagpipes Set of X-Treme standard drone reeds. Retail price: $130.

Elixir Piping & Drumming A book of the winner’s choice and all corresponding recordings and sheet music of exam pieces from the company’s wide selection of materials. Retail price: approx. $30.

Lee & Sons Bagpipes Any pipe bag of the winner’s choice: sheepskin, goatskin, cowhide with or without zipper and/or grommets. Retail price: $389.

Lyons Bagpipes On set Crozier Carbon Drone Reeds, $110 retail value, and a Moose Valve, $40 retail value.

Mayor Drum Supply Bass section prize pack: Set of Mayor Bass and Tenor Mallets; set of Hosbilt World’s Edition tenor drum heads (1 top head per drum); pair of Hosbilt bass heads with artwork (print ready art to be supplied); Mayor TMD. Total retail value: $1,100.

McGillivray Piping / Pipetunes.ca One copy of Rhythmic Fingerwork ($38); one copy of Piobaireachd Fingerwork ($38); and a $100 Pipetunes gift certificate.

Reelpipes a copy of Fred Morrison’s Outlands Collection ($35) and a copy of Along the Road ($25).

Sound Supreme Precision Made Reeds a half-dozen pipe chanter reeds to whatever strength and make of chanter required. Retail value: $75.

Walsh Bagpipes An adjustable blowpipe and protector so it can be removed from the blowpipe and be stored with the valve protected. Retail value: $135.

 

Help. My. Freakin. Boab! That’s a lot of great merchandise for one super-smart pipes|drums reader.

Now, just go the next page for the rules!

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(Updated) Confiscated! Two vintage bagpipes seized at US border

Published:

They did everything by the book. They had their CITES permits. They even disclosed to the officials that they were carrying instruments that featured antique ivory. But Campbell Webster and Eryk Bean, both age 17, are nonetheless each without their vintage Robertson drones after they attempted to return home to Massachusetts after a successful weekend in Canada competing at the games Maxville and Montreal.

Webster’s 1936 silver and ivory Robertsons are not just vintage pipes, they are an heirloom instrument, played for many years by his father Gordon Webster, who was a pipe-major with the 1st and 2nd Battalion Scots Guards and served for many years as the official piper to Queen Elizabeth II.

Bean’s drones are also Robertsons, with full ivory mounts, made in 1958, which he purchased in January of this year for US$7,000.

Campbell Webster (left) and Eryk Bean at the US-Canada border crossing after their vintage instruments were confiscated by US officials.

At first they were told that the pipes would be held for a week. But while pipes|drums was speaking with Campbell and Lezlie Webster, they received the devastating news that neither set of pipes would be returned.

Ever.

But the two were later informed that their pipes would in fact be returned to them, in what they hope would lead to the ultimate end in the roller-coaster two days.

“We were asked [by the Canadian official] our reason for travel, so I said ‘Maxville and Montreal games,’ ” Campbell Webster said about their trip out of the USA. “They asked if we had pipes. I said yes and also that they had ivory and we had CITES certificates. I knew I was flagged. I had spoken with a US Fish & Wildlife Department agent in Champlain, New York, and she informed me I needed an amendment to my CITES permit. I couldn’t get one in time to cross the border for Maxville games.”

Campbell Webster playing his father’s 1936 Robertsons.

So they decided to travel to Canada anyway, and got into the country with no trouble. But when they returned to the United States they were easy pickings for the US officials.

Having all paperwork in place – a CITES permit and the additional amendment – will cost a total of $238 each time an American takes an ivory instrument into Canada. When travelling abroad to places such as Scotland, Americans must schedule an appointment with an official at a “designated” port and make a declaration on their customs form, but there is no fee.

For an American piper with drones that feature ivory, the cost will be nearly $500 and a lot of hassle, even after doing everything by the current letter of the law.

Webster’s mother, Lezlie, who is also a prominent piper, has gotten State Senators involved, but so far even they have had no success.

“The boys are absolutely sick to their stomachs,” Lezlie Webster said upon receiving word that they might never recover the instruments.

The crackdown by US officials couldn’t come at a worse time, when dozens of the United States’ best pipers are about to travel to compete at the World Championships in Glasgow. They are now scrambling either to complete documentation or find replacement instruments that do not feature ivory mounts.

“No piper I know of supports the use of ivory today for new bagpipes,” said one piper who commented but did not wish his name to be used. “This looks like some sort of effort by officials to seize as much ‘contraband’ as possible to fulfill their job quotas. It’s absolutely idiotic.”

Webster said that he is worried the matter has alerted other smaller ports to be on the lookout for bagpipes.

“The CITES certificate is only good at main ports like airports,” he added. “We need to work on getting smaller port crossings without fees and extra paperwork. They’re going to have a lot of bagpipes very soon – enough to start their own pipe band.”

Campbell Webster said that Wallace Bagpipes of Glasgow has already stepped up to loan him an instrument when he competes in Scotland in August, should he need it.

 

Ferguson soaks up Aboyne glory

Published: August 3, 2014

Gavin Ferguson

Aboyne, Scotland – August 2, 2014 – Gavin Ferguson had a fine day in the senior solo piping at the Aboyne Games, where 16 competed on a dry morning but rainy in the afternoon.

Piobaireachd
1st Allan Russell, “Lament for the Only Son”
2nd Gavin Ferguson, “The Groat”
3rd Anna Kummerlow, “Corrienessan’s Salute”
4th Craig Sutherland, “Lady Margaret MacDonald’s Salute”
Judges: Ronald Clark, Norman Mathieson, Malcolm McRae

March
1st Gavin Ferguson
2nd Greig Canning
3rd Allan Russell
4th Craig Sutherland
Judges: Jimmy Banks, Bill Wotherspoon

Strathspey & Reel
1st Greig Canning
2nd Gavin Ferguson
3rd Craig Sutherland
4th Allan Russell
Judges: Jimmy Banks, Bill Wotherspoon

Hornpipe & Jig
1st Craig Sutherland
2nd Robert Gibb
3rd Ursa Beckford
4th Allan Russell
Judges: Duncan Watson, Bill Wotherspoon

HD video: 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel): 2014 North American Champions

Published: August 2, 2014

Maxville, Ontario – August 2, 2014 – The 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel) won the 2014 North American Pipe Band Championship at the 67th annual Glengarry Highland Games in very warm weather, with thunderstorms threatening later in the afternoon, but which never materialized. In Grade 2, the Ottawa Police Service Pipe Band continued its glide to Grade 1 status with a win of both events, and Dunedin from Florida took the Grade 3 contest. Bruce Gandy of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, gained the overall award in the Professional Solo Piping, and thus North American Champion. Derek Cooper won the equivalent for Professional Solo Drumming.

78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel) competing in the Grade 1 MSR, on their way to winning the 2014 North American Championship.

Bands
Grade 1

Overall
1st 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel)
2nd 78th Fraser Highlanders
3rd Toronto Police
4th Peel Regional Police
Drumming: 78th Fraser Highlanders

Medley
1st 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel) (3,1,1,1)
2nd 78th Fraser Highlanders (1,3,2,3)
3rd Toronto Police (2,2,4,4)
4th Peel Regional Police (4,4,3,2)
Drumming: 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel)
Judges: Glenna MacKay-Johnstone, Bob Worrall (piping); Greg Dinsdale (drumming); John Elliott (ensemble)

We are pleased to provide high-definition audio-video from the Grade 1 competition. Regrettably, due to a distraction, we did not capture the medley of the 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel). Our thanks to Richard King for providing his own video of the band’s performance.

MSR
1st 78th Fraser Highlanders (ensemble preference) (3,4,1,1)
2nd 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel) (2,2,3,2)
3rd Toronto Police (1,1,4,4)
4th Peel Regional Police (4,3,2,3)
Drumming: 78th Fraser Highlanders
Judges: Colin MacLellan, Iain Symington (piping); Ciaran Mordaunt (drumming); Reay Mackay (ensemble)

Grade 2 (four competed)
Overall
1st Ottawa Police Service
2nd Greater Midwest
3rd Fredericton Society of St. Andrew
4th City of Regina
Drumming: Greater Midwest

Medley
1st Ottawa Police Service (1,1,2,1)
2nd Greater Midwest (2,2,1,2)
3rd Fredericton Society of St. Andrew (4,4,3,3)
4th City of Regina (3,3,4,4)
Judges: Colin MacLellan, Iain Symington (piping); Ciaran Mordaunt (drumming); Reay Mackay (ensemble)

MSR
1st Ottawa Police Service (2,1,3,1)
2nd Greater Midwest (1,4,2,2)
3rd Fredericton Society of St. Andrew (3,2,1,3)
4th City of Regina (4,3,4,4)
Judges: Glenna MacKay-Johnstone, Bob Worrall Charlie MacDonald (piping); Greg Dinsdale (drumming); John Elliott (ensemble)

Grade 3 (MSR, 12 competed)
1st Dunedin (2,1,3,1)
2nd MacMillan (1,2,9,2)
3rd Paris/Port Dover (3,4,5,4)
4th Ulster Scottish (6,7,1,3)
5th Toronto Police (4,5,4,5)
6th Dartmouth & District (7,3,6,6)
Judges: Charlie MacDonald, Dan Lyden (piping); Dave Coleman (drumming);
Bob MacCrimmon (ensemble)

Grade 4 (march medley, 14 competed)
1st Rob Roy (2,2,3,2)
2nd St. Columcille United Gaelic (3,4,5,1)
3rd Dunedin (8,1,2,3)
4th Arnprior MacNab (1,5,8,4)
5th Guelph (5,7,1,5)
6th Grand Celtic (4,3,9,7)
Judges: Glenna MacKay-Johnstone, Bob Worrall (piping); Greg Dinsdale (drumming); John Elliott (ensemble)

Grade 5 (march medley, nine competed)
1st Hamilton Police (2,1,1,1)
2nd Lindsay (1,2,2,3)
3rd Grand Celtic (3,3,6,2)
4th White Heather (5,5,4,4)
5th Durham Regional Police (4,4,5,9)
6th Glengarry (6,6,7,7)
Judges: Iain Symington, Charlie MacDonald (piping); Dave Coleman (drumming);
Bob MacCrimmon (ensemble)

Professional Solo Piping
Piobaireachd
A-Grade
(13 competed)
1st Andrew Berthoff, “The Old Men of the Shells” #1
2nd Andy Rogers, “The Blue Ribbon”
3rd Ian K. MacDonald, “Lament for Patrick Og MacCrimmon”
4th Bruce Gandy, “The Big Spree”
5th Alex Gandy, “MacCrimmon’s Sweetheart”
6th Glenn Walpole, “In Praise of Morag”
Judge: Bob Worrall

B-Grade (14 competed)
1st Nick Hudson
2nd Dylan Whittemore
3rd Alan Clark
4th Steven Tripp
5th Michael MacDonald
6th Dan Lyden
Judge: Reay Mackay

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Dicker wins Gold; McKeown hits the Bar in Maxville Friday Piob events

Published: August 1, 2014

Jacob Dicker

Maxville, Ontario – August 1, 2014 – Jacob Dicker of Kingston, Ontario, won the Piobaireachd Society Gold Medal (Canada) at the Glengarry Highland Games against 14 other contestants on the Professional-grade contest. Sean McKeown of Toronto was the winner of the Bar to the Gold Medal competition, reserved for previous winners of the Gold Medal contest. Conditions were warm at the indoor competition.

Colin MacLellan judged both events.

Piobaireachd Society Gold Medal (Canada) (15 competed)
1st Jacob Dicker, “The Bells of Perth”
2nd Dylan Whittemore, Kitchener, Ontario, “The Red Speckled Bull”
3rd Andrea Boyd, Ottawa, “The Big Spree”
4th Elizabeth Sheridan, Oakville, Ontario, “Black Donald’s March”
5th Nick Hudson, Pittsburgh, “MacLeod of Raasay’s Salute”

Also competing but not in the prizes: Daniel Carr, Alan Clark, Dan Lyden, Eilidh MacDonald, Michael MacDonald, Andrew Mackay, Steven Tripp, MacGregor van de Ven, Glenn Walpole and Robert Wilson

Sean McKeown

Bar to the Medal (eight competed)
1st Sean McKeown, “The Battle of Aldearn” #2
2nd Andrew Berthoff, Toronto, “Lament for Captain MacDougall
3rd Ed Bush, Cardinal, Ontario, “Lament for the Viscount of Dundee”

Also competing but not in the prizes: Andrew Hayes, Ian K. MacDonald, Doug MacRae, Scott McIntosh and Andy Rogers.

Stay tuned to pipes|drums for results from the Saturday solo piping and drumming and pipe band competitions as they become available.

 

Gillies Collection officially opens at Piping Live!

Published: July 31, 2014

New printed collections of pipe music are becoming less and less frequent, and one that represents the compositions of three generations of one piping family is unique. The Gillies Collection, a new compilation featuring the tunes Norman, Alasdair and Norrie Gillies, will be unveiled at Piping Live! at 11 am, August 14th, with performances by former members of the Queens Own Highlanders, the great solo piper Gordon Walker, Darach Urquhart and the Ullapool & District Pipe Band.

The Gillies Collection features compositions and arrangements from my family and includes a varied range of tunes,” said Norrie Gilles. “Most of these tunes are easy enough for the average piper and are all set out in an easy-to-read format. The book itself has been a plan in my family for years and was previously started by my father, Alasdair Gillies, before a computer malfunction set him back.”

Norrie Gillies said that his friend Gary Nimmo, a piping tutor . . .

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Midges an extra test for pipers at Arisaig

Published:
Bova_Andrew_2014

Andrew Bova, winner of the Strathspey & Reel at Arisaig

Arisaig, Scotland – July 30, 2014 – Decker Forrest was the overall winner, but the prizes were generally spread around, with 11 pipers competing in the senior events in cool and rainy weather in the morning and early afternoon, giving way to warm and sunny conditions later on. The midges were in full force.

Piobaireachd
1st Decker Forrest
2nd Caitlin MacDonald
3rd David Richsmiller
4th Andrew Hall
5th Neil Clark
Judge: Archie MacLean

March
1st Callum McColl
2nd Decker Forrest
3rd Dan Nevans
4th Andrew Hall
Judge: Iain MacFadyen

Strathspey & Reel
1st Andrew Bova
2nd Dan Nevans
3rd Jonathan Simpson
4th Neil Clark
Judge: Iain MacFadyen

Jig
1st Decker Forrest
2nd Jonathan Simpson
3rd Andrew Bova
4th Caitlin MacDonald
Judge: Iain MacFadyen

MOST RECENT POST
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    Fri, 17 Oct 2014
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UPCOMING EVENTS October 25, 2014Central Virginia Celtic Festival & Highland GamesRichmond International Raceway, Richmond VA

October 31, 2014Tucson Celtic FestivalRillito Raceway Park, Tucson , AZ

November 8, 2014PPBSO AGM and GALABest Western Brant Park Inn, 19-Holiday Inn Drive, Brantford

November 15, 2014Angus Macdonald ChampionshipsLakeside, CA

November 21, 20142014 Balmoral ClassicPittsburgh, PA

TIP OF THE DAY
Young drummers: Learn the basic rudiments properly.
Alistair Aitken, Gorebridge, Scotland

FROM THE ARCHIVES