Talk to any piper or drummer older than 55 anywhere and they will all say that, until the 1980s, there was much more socializing and camaraderie between rival bands and players. In Ontario they always talk about how everyone camped at the games, had impromptu ceilidhs the night of the event, then played softball or football on Sunday. In Scotland they talk about band socials where other bands would support each other more.
And then they remark how today everyone just goes home, and hardly even socializes with the competition – the enemy – even in the beer tent.
Why have things changed so? Has what we do become strictly about winning? Are the high-stakes of the World’s and Maxville and Oban and Inverness becoming such that we have no time to have fun?