What the world’s best pipers are playing: a pipes|drums Survey
By our tabulations, the preferred instrument at the Argyllshire Gathering and Northern Meeting last year looked like this:
Vintage Henderson drones
Naill blackwood chanter
Donald MacPhee chanter reed
Henderson cane bass reed
Ezeedrone tenor reeds
Begg sheepskin bag
Basic tube trap
Because our current survey was more extensive than the one conducted in 2009, it’s difficult to compare statistics, but overall we see a dramatic trend in the popularity of cane bass drone reeds. The use of vintage drones remains strong, but clearly modern drones are more popular with B-Grade players. Ezeedone tenor reeds are still by far the choice of the world’s elite pipers, according to our stats, while preference for MacPhee chanter reeds remains strong. Natural pipe bags have increased in popularity, and so it follows that tube traps are on the rise.
As with our 2009 survey, we could not find two pipers who responded who used an identical instrument and setup. The variety of choice continues to expand, and it’s clear that personal preference is what it’s all about.
As always, we encourage you to seek out your own ideal instrument!