Offensive Bagpipes?

Yithian

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#63
As (quite possibly) the only piper on these boards, I can tell you quite a few personal stories regarding the world of pipe-bagging.

View attachment 22458
Tell me about your headgear, O, Piper!

Is it military or civilian (it's blurry)?

And does the tartan/check have some significance?
 

titch

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#66
A former colleague of mine at the Botanic Gardens turned up to an evening function in a kilt with the most impressive sporran ever. When I questioned him about it it turned out it was his grandfathers uniform from the First World War. Looked amazing.
It may be an urban legend, but I was told years ago that kilt covers where introduced because the Germans and boers used the sporran as an aiming point. That's dashed unsportsmanlike.
 

Ermintruder

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#69
Tell me about your headgear, O, Piper!
He's blown it. It's a Glengarry

Is it military or civilian (it's blurry)
The glengarry is worn by both military & civilians in highland dress. It's actually quite warm & practical, the long twin ribbons trailing from the back of it are...fun, in the wind (environmental, not piped)

And does the tartan/check have some significance?
Originally these were rigidly-observed, but in modern times these have become fairly-standardised/undifferentiated. Apart from in Canada...apparently
Wiki said:
The diced bands on glengarries were either in red, white and blue for royal regiments or red, white and green for others....The 93rd Sutherland Highlanders were unique in wearing a simple red and white chequer pattern. This was said to commemorate the stand of the 93rd Sutherland Highlanders at the Battle of Balaclava immortalized as The Thin Red Line.
These glengarry tartan ribbons were the origin of the Sillitoe Tartan (ie black-and-white checks worn as the hat-bands of many current Police forces around the world)

When done well, by someone who really can pipe, it has the capacity to be wonderful. Conversely, it can... sound really bad. It is a miracle marathon challenge that requires excellent memory, perfect bearing and turnout, and great technical skill. It polarises pipers & spectators....most tend to prefer 'the light music' (most often in the classic triad of march, strathspey & reel)

As (quite possibly) the only piper on these boards
I never progressed beyond the chanter...sadly. But: I've professionally 'called the tunes', for many years.
 

heisenbear

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#70
Here's a brief, very rough story as to how I ended up being a piper.

I started the pipes at the age of 19 in 2000 after overhearing a member of the folk/ceilidh band(that I play accordion and autoharp for) mention that he had a set of bagpipes for sale as he couldn't get on with them. I had always wanted to play the pipes and I jumped on him with money straight away. I found some tuition locally, which came as a surprise living in such a backwater. I quickly progressed and spent just about every waking moment in between college and a part-time job practicing. Later that year, I was able to play quite a few tunes well on the pipes and landed a small gig in a local hotel piping in the New Year. Plus I loved dressing up in all the gear! Then things took off like Thunderbird One when Madonna got married and had a piper at the wedding. Then I became extremely in demand. And then 9/11 happened. And all of a sudden I found myself very busy playing at funerals. One Saturday, I played 6 gigs over 12 hours. But living in a small town full of jealous people, I soon found myself being bullied mercilessly just for doing something different and my life was made a living hell at work. Within a couple of years, everything started to go into freefall and I found myself nearly burnt out. Getting involved in a pipe band turned out to be a mistake as I hated marching and all the military pretentions that went with that whole scene. I last played a Burns Night about 5 years ago. Then the pipes went up into the attic. These days, I play the mouthblown Scottish Smallpipes. These are quiet. Well, relatively quiet. I can play indoors at home and at pub sessions without deafening all within 80 feet and they have a nice sweet tone. Plus they have the added advantage of using the same fingering as the Highland pipes, so the tunes I learnt over the years will not be wasted.
 

Ermintruder

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#71
These are quiet. Well, relatively quiet. I can play indoors at home and at pub sessions without deafening all within 80 feet and they have a nice sweet tone. Plus they have the added advantage of using the same fingering as the Highland pipes, so the tunes I learnt over the years will not be wasted.
Might you consider an electronic chanter?
Permits practice play in total silence....

2020-01-12 21.16.21.png
I'm shocked by the cost.... I was expecting maybe 70-100£/$/EUR, but I'm just auld & unattuned when it comes to musical instrument prices.

ps you could also occasionally connect them to a 40kW PA system, just to loosen the roof-tiles a little
 

heisenbear

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#72
Might you consider an electronic chanter?
Permits practice play in total silence....

View attachment 22540
I'm shocked by the cost.... I was expecting maybe 70-100£/$/EUR, but I'm just auld & unattuned when it comes to musical instrument prices.

ps you could also occasionally connect them to a 40kW PA system, just to loosen the roof-tiles a little
I've got the Deger electronic pipes. I tried a Fagerstrom chanter but preferred the finger spacing of the Deger. Plus, they play Amazing Grace as the battery dies....
 

Ermintruder

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#73
Plus, they play Amazing Grace as the battery dies....
All portable devices used in Scotland are required to do this sort of thing, under many local laws. My electric toothbrush plays 'Highland Cathedral' if I forget to leave it on the recharging stand overnight.

And our cordless vacuum cleaner whistles-out the main coda from "Donald Whar's Yer Troosers" if you try & tidy more than just the living-room.

ps I am, of course, joking. It's always 'Amazing Grace'...
 

Frideswide

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#76
These days, I play the mouthblown Scottish Smallpipes. These are quiet. Well, relatively quiet. I can play indoors at home and at pub sessions without deafening all within 80 feet and they have a nice sweet tone.
popular in "my" home area - Wigtownshire
 

Squail

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#77
Our kettle signals boiling with Wild Mountain Time...
Images conjured up, of someone in Colorado or Alberta with a badly-malfunctioning clock :) ! The song is generally reckoned to be about wild mountain thyme (growing around the blooming heather) -- I'm aware that I'm a most irritating nitpicking know-all...
 

Swifty

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#82
Because I've been watching a lot of bagpipe videos recently, YT has recommended me this. I don't know how comprehensive the list is but there are many bagpipe cousins I've never heard of before. UK, Europe and Scandinavia.

Out of ten, the Great Highland Bagpipe gets an 11 from me .. very stirring stuff.
 

Eyespy

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#85
We used to live in Ohio as part of an international military enclave. there was a chap who looked like a scot ( muscly thighs, kilt well fitted tunic and stockings, sandy hair etc) who played the pipes. I believe he made more cash at that than his day job. in great demand for all sorts of events.

We ate more haggis and bloody cucumber sandwiches in three years than in the rest of my life.
 

hunck

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#86
Apologies for continuing the slight diversion but here's some more Uilleann goodness. There's something emotionally affecting about the sound, much more so than the Scottish pipe, at least to my ears. It's more expressive, what with the bends you can get on notes & so on. I think it has a more vocal quality.

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Frasier Buddolph

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#87
A few years ago I attended a Scottish festival in western Connecticut. It was a cold drizzly morning, and the fog was so thick you couldn't see fifty feet. Suddenly, off in the mist, a pipe and drum corp struck up, and it made my hair stand on end. I could imagine the effect if I was standing on a battlefield waiting for the attack. Brrrr . . .
 

RaM

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#88
Always loved the pipes, a fond memory was from a reunion a good few
years back, the piping of the haggis, a big hulking piper and a RSM quick
marching with a little Rumanian chef with Haggis stuck between then with
very little room, he looked frightened to death.
 
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