January 31, 2008

New collection to include previously unpublished Donald MacLeod tunes

A new book of Highland pipe music compiled by Iain MacDonald of Regina, Saskatchewan (pictured right), will include several previously unpublished compositions by Pipe-Major Donald MacLeod, MBE. The collection is due to be released later in 2008.

According to MacDonald, the new book, which also includes previously unpublished compositions by Gavin Stoddart, Garth Neel and Sean Somers, in addition to numerous original tunes by MacDonald himself, will feature nearly 70 scores in total. Seven original new Donald MacLeod tunes are featured, including a new piobaireachd, “Sandy MacPherson’s Salute.”

The short piobaireachd is of regular construction with a ground and taorluath and crunluath variations. It is named for Sandy MacPherson, an “amateur” piper who was a member of the Royal Scottish Pipers’ Society and a frequent judge of solo events in Scotland.

MacDonald was a pupil of MacLeod in the late 1970s when he lived in Scotland. Since MacLeod’s death in 1982 MacDonald has remained close with the great composer’s widow, Winnie, as well as MacLeod’s daughter, Susan, for whom the popular strathspey was named. He obtained special permission from Winnie MacLeod to publish the tunes.

Iain MacDonald has been a top-flight solo piper for almost 30 years and is currently Pipe-Major of the Grade 2 City of Regina Pipe Band. He spent the 2007 season with the ScottishPower Pipe Band, while his own band was on hiatus while they searched for drummers.


  1. Congratulations Iain, Now that you have made it public, you have to hold to that 2008 release date haha. Trust me I know how late these books can be but I am very much looking forward to seeing the tunes in this collection. Some new donald MacLeod tunes, you can’t go wrong with that and several tunes by Donald’s students like yourself and Garth Neil. It will be interesting to compare styles of tunes from the different composers in the book. Hurry up already and get it done Cheers pal Bruce

  2. Congratulations, Iain; I am looking forward with eager anticipation. Speaking of 1980, however, I should like to point out that I wasn’t born then … 😉



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