. . . be talking about this reed, or that bag that you hadn’t even heard of. The developers would make sure they tried it with Alasdair before the rest of us got a look!
These past weeks there have been many reminders of Alasdair, whether it be at a contest, playing a tune in the house or hearing a tune he played or an event, or just remembering a story or incident involving him. I hope this will always be so. He played such a big part in all of our piping lives that he will be so missed.
I realize I haven’t mentioned the playing yet. His performances at the “big” March, Strathspey & Reel were of course legendary, among the best ever performances I have heard. Of course the sheer numbers of wins make sure the 11 silver stars will never be beaten. Alasdair’s mastery of the pipe and music stretched to every part of the repertoire, a true all-rounder and he proved this at the major competitions on many occasions. His ceilidh piping was always a treat, inventive and he had an advantage over the quicker fingered players in that the music shone above the amazing technique, not many can master this. You could listen all night.
We can only share in his memory now and share our sadness with his family and dearest. I am privileged to have known him, heard him play and call him my friend.
We will never see his like again.
Willie McCallum is probably the most successful all-round competitive solo piper of the last 50 years. A native of Campbeltown, Scotland, he now lives in Bearsden, Scotland, with piping as his profession at Willie McCallum Piping.