December 31, 2018

Bill Merriman, 1934-2018

Bill Merriman in a 2014 photo.

Bill Merriman, a major contributor to the piping and drumming scene in the western United States, died on December 30, 2018, at the age of 84.

Merriman was the co-founder and former Pipe-Major of the Prince Charles Pipe Band of San Francisco, one of the longest-running and most successful pipe bands in the United States. Over more than 30 years, he was the leader of the Pleasanton / Santa Rosa games in California, retiring for good only in 2014. Under his watch, the event continued as one of the most significant and popular pipe band competitions in North America.

Merriman originally joined the City of San Francisco Pipe Band, starting a youth pipe band as a feeder group. The band eventually became Prince Charles. Merriman was said to have tutored more than 500 pipers in the last 50 years.

Bill Merriman was a tour de force of piping and drumming energy, and a mainstay of success for the art in California.

On behalf of the piping and drumming world, our sympathies go to Bill Merriman’s family and many friends at this sad time.





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