Features

Simon McKerrell: what’s the story?

Simon McKerrell: what’s the story?

By Simon McKerrell At this time of the year, most pipers around the globe are busy learning the tunes they’ll play during next year’s competition season. Band and solo competitors are working hard on mastering the music, working on the the technical improvements in their playing and hopefully, as my […]

‘Big Ronnie’ bridges the generations

‘Big Ronnie’ bridges the generations

Ronald Lawrie of Oban (1927-2008) wasn’t called ‘Big Ronnie’ for nothing. But his broad-shouldered, 6ft 5in frame and imposing, square-jawed presence were almost incidental to his considerable stature in piping — and an involvement that began with direct influences from the 19th century and continues into the 21st century. He […]

Brett Tidswell: piping in Australia

Brett Tidswell: piping in Australia

By Brett Tidswell The oldest pipe band in the southern hemisphere is arguably the Pipes and Drums of the Royal Caledonian Society of South Australia. The band was first established in 1894 in Adelaide, the capital city of South Australia. There is some argument that it was not a pipe […]

Tunes in the key of A-Major

Tunes in the key of A-Major

Theory Top-Up by Tim Cummings Piping Today #72, 2014. This article is the third in an on-going series focusing on specific musical keys found in our Scottish piping repertoire.  Having already looked at the two most common musical keys in our light music, D-Major and A-Mixolydian, we’ll now put a […]

The real life of Mike Katz

The real life of Mike Katz

While not cut from the cloth of the competitive piper, Mike Katz is one of the world’s most successful American-born pipers. Born in the Los Angeles region of the San Fernando Valley, he broke his piping teeth in his older brother Steve’s high school pipe band – along with a […]

Flashbulb memories

Flashbulb memories

GREY’S NOTES by Michael Grey Piping Today #64, 2013. It’s an uncomfortable truth that any sentence that starts with “One of my earliest memories…” will induce in any person — outside of maybe a Freudian psychoanalyst — a vacant stare, a droop of the eye lids and just enough open-mouthed […]

Tunes in the key of A-Mixolydian

Tunes in the key of A-Mixolydian

Theory Top-Up by Tim Cummings Piping Today #71, 2014. In the last issue of Piping Today, we took a close look at the key of D-Major.  That article was the first of what will be a series designed to supplement previous articles1 that painted broader pictures of multiple musical keys2.  […]

Two heads are better than one

Two heads are better than one

GREY’S NOTES by Michael Grey Piping Today #63, 2013. It’s said that every day we each make thousands of decisions. Starting from the moment we wake up: do we get out of our chariots or roll over? And then: if we decide we want to eat, what’s for brekkie, what […]

Who was the Earl of Antrim? – Part 2

Who was the Earl of Antrim? – Part 2

A discussion on the possible influence ofScottish and Irish ceòl mòr on each other By Frank Timoney And what of the strange testimony by Dennis Hempson? In 1792, the Belfast city fathers finally realised in probable grateful relief, that the ancient tradition of Irish harp playing was about to disappear […]