September 30, 2006

Updated: WAPOL ousts Cowie

James Cowie has been ousted as Pipe-Major of the Grade 1 Western Australia Police Pipe Band, and Alisdair McLaren has been appointed to the post. In Addition, Adam Britten will be the band’s new Pipe-Sergeant.

“It is acknowledged that both Al and Adam are at the forefront in the piping ranks and their fresh outlook will be reflected in their musical approach and their vision for the future of WAPOL,” the band said in a statement.

Cowie had been Pipe-Major of the band since 1996 and led the band to success, chief among it the release of a live CD in 2004 and a successful competitive tour of Scottish contests in 2004. WAPOL finished fourth in the Grade 1 Qualifying contest at the 2004 World’s, and went on to place eleventh overall.

A source close to the band, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “James Cowie, unbeknown to him at the time, was stood down from the Pipe-Major’s position while he was competing in Scotland with the Australia Highlanders. He remains (for now) an employed player in the band. It was not until James’s return to work that he was informed of the change in leadership of the band, a decision that management claims, was in the best interests of the band. He was at no time, consulted or informed of any of the pending changes.”

The band’s Leading-Drummer, Emlyn Brown, remains in that role.


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