February 28, 2009

Jimmy Pryde, 1929-2009

Pipe-Major Jimmy Pryde died on February 16, 2009, in the Scottish Borders after a lengthy illness. He was 79.
Pryde was probably most famous for being the Pipe-Major of the Royal Scots Greys when the band reached international acclaim in 1971, scoring a number-hit with its rendition of “Amazing Grace.”
Born in 1929 in Wallyford in the Lothian region of Scotland, Pryde had a distinguished early career as a piper and pipe-maker. He was an apprentice at an early age with William Sinclair & Son Bagpipe Makers. He served in the Seaforth Highlanders alongside Pipe-Major Donald MacLeod, and went on to play with the Shotts & Dykehead Caledonia Pipe Band in the 1950s, participating in several World Championship victories
After leaving the army he taught in the Peebles region of Scotland before taking on teaching roles with several Edinburgh-based private schools. Among his students is the top-flight solo piper Simon McKerrell.
Jimmy Pryde was known as cheerful and enthusiastic, with many stories and a mischievous streak.
His funeral was on February 18th. Rob Cowie of Edinburgh Academy gave the eulogy.
Jimmy Pryde is survived by his wife, Ena, and three sons, James, Colin and Malcolm and their children.
On behalf of the piping and drumming world, our sympathies go out to Jimmy Pryde’s family and many friends at this sad time.




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