“The High Note” is a free program where the piper and drummer, respectively, will provide free mentoring to needy pipe bands through a nomination process. Only a week after launch, Briscoe said that they have had 25 nominations for 13 bands in five countries.
Bands chosen will receive a monthly video workshop check-ins; review of and adjustments to scores, arrangements and ensemble; a performance by the band at the 2019 Piping Live! Festival; and the two players will compete with the band at the 2019 World Pipe Band Championships.
Briscoe said that The High Note’s objective is “to empower the piping community from the ground up – focusing on those bands that simply don’t have access to top-tier leadership. Mentors will cover their own travel and accommodation expenses with zero costs to the selected pipe band.”
With the success of the initiative, which is limited to bands in Grade 3, Grade 4 and Juvenile, they hope to attract other top-tier leaders to contribute their talent and time as coaches.
Briscoe added that bands from Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and the United States have been nominated, and said that the majority of nominations have come from within Scotland.
Briscoe’s playing experience includes stints with ScottishPower and the 78th Fraser Highlanders, and Meneghin was a snare drummer with Peoples Ford Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia for several years.
As to why he launched the program, Briscoe said, “Now that I have a son, I feel priorities in life have changed and I want to help enable and amplify the next generation of young piping talent. In the end, it will cost me money to do this, but the long-term impact I can have on a pipe band or players individually could be immense.”
The band chosen for the first High Note program will be announced on January 1, 2019. Those interested can make contact by email.