August 14, 2005

Jottings from GLA

A fantastic day at the World’s yesterday. The Grade 1 standard was extremely high. The day stayed mostly dry after a wet start, the beer tents were well-stocked, and the results came out quickly.

There are tons of things to talk about, but, for now, here are a few stand-out items:

  • SFU’s medley. This was I think the best contest performance that I’ve ever heard from a pipe band. The overall band sound was unreal, and the band’s rendition of Mark Saul’s “Emancipation” was a visual and aural treat. Brill. Ee. Ant.

  • Manawatu’s pipe section. Some of the best pipe band moments are hearing a band that you have modest expectations from, and then end up super-impressed when you actually hear them. A crystal-clear, perfectly-set sound in three performances got my attention. I wasn’t as close as the judges, but I’m pretty sure that I would have scored them higher in piping all three events.

  • Ballycoan: see above. This is an extremely good band that seems to have all the marks of a young FMM. Sound to spare.

  • The growing internationalism of the World’s. Bands from Spain, Oman, and Pakistan were there just to be a part of it. This lends a real festive aspect to the event.

  • The Grade 1 qualifier. This was a very low-energy event. Lots of very careful playing, and bands seemed to be going through the motions. With the exception of Dysart’s “Leaving Lunga,” it was pretty much the same old hoary band-chestnuts being trotted out, including umpteen “Blair Drummond”s. It would seem to make a lot more sense for everyone to make this a medley.

  • Connectivity. Ironic that I can get the results posted as they’re announced when I’m 3000 miles away, but being right there there was too much “noise” (or something) to get a wireless connection to the net, somethign that had worked great all week. Sorry, readers, I tried.
  • I’ll be back with more scribblings later.





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