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Extending the life of a chanter reed

Extending the life of a chanter reed

“The pipe reed obeys no laws. Like the most fickle woman, it rewards, if at all, the lavish attentions of an honest heart with but a brief and transient display.” – J.C.M., Piping Times, October 1949. By Chris Apps Contrary to ‘J.C.M.’s’ quote, the average pipe chanter reed, if well […]

Stuart Letford: Bliadhna na Cobhid

Stuart Letford: Bliadhna na Cobhid

2020, Bliadhna na Cobhid (the Year of Covid to those unfamiliar with Gaelic), the year that almost all piping activity took place in front of a laptop or Smart phone. Where every competition or band practice began like a seance: “Hello? Can you hear me … can you hear me? […]

Stories of the Tunes – The Black Mill

Stories of the Tunes – The Black Mill

By James E. Scott The Muillean Dubh [The Black Mill] is a very old tune and, at one time, was well-known and popular all over the Highlands, every piper having it in his repertoire. For some reason, it seems to have gone out of favour in later times and is […]

Yahya Hussein: Preparing to do our damndest in 2021

Yahya Hussein: Preparing to do our damndest in 2021

2020 was to be the year I made my first appearance for the Dunvegan Medal, for which I had been preparing mightily over the last three years. My four submissions are, out of interest, Lament for the Children, Lament for the Earl of Antrim, MacSwan of Roaig and Lament for […]

Merry Christmas from all of us

Merry Christmas from all of us

It is Christmas morning here in Scotland. Everyone connected with Bagpipe.news and the National Piping Centre would like to wish you a Merry Christmas. We hope Santa has been good to you wherever you are. It’s been a tough year. One like no other. Throughout this historic year we’ve worked […]

A Christmas ceilidh in the Bonnie Glen

A Christmas ceilidh in the Bonnie Glen

By Clemson N. Page, Jr. It hardly seemed possible a year had passed. The Second Annual Auchmountain’s Bonnie Glen Yuletide International Invitational Grand Championship Grade 7 Extra-Loud Pipe Band Extravanganza and Highland Revue was now history. All creation, like a dowager countess loosening her corsets, sighed with relief. It had […]

It’s in the blood

It’s in the blood

Andy Tasker is a piper with an impressive piping lineage. The retired banker from Leeds can trace a direct lineal descent to two of our most important piping families, the MacKays of Raasay and the MacKays of Gairloch – and also Captain Malcolm MacLeod of Raasay. But before we get […]

Sandy Grant Gordon, 1931-2020

Sandy Grant Gordon, 1931-2020

Sandy Grant Gordon, one of piping’s great patrons – possibly its greatest ever benefactor – has died peacefully at home. He was 89 and had been in hospital following a fall a week ago. Daughters Maggie and Sally were with him at the end. Sandy was not a piper himself […]