PP Editor’s Blog 20/2/15: Drumming Prizes etc

Results of our poll on the drumming prize were as follows:

Yes, but for side drummers only 10%  
Yes, for all drummers, bass, tenor and side 40%  
Definitely not, it’s a pipe band contest for goodness sake 34%  
No, there are too many drummers today anyway without encouraging more 16%  

So yes, most of you think there should be prizes for drummers. However a significant percentage are against the idea favouring the ‘band only’ option. Personally I don’t have an issue with drumming prizes provided they are judged through the prism of the pipe band. In other words a drum corps that is excellent in isolation from the pipers should never be given the accolade of a prize. The corps which perhaps doesn’t play so well but lives and breathes the band and helps it deliver as a unit should be the one favoured with the silverware.
The same goes for bass and tenor sections. Absolutely no use if they are brilliant in isolation.
The onus is on drumming adjudicators to make sure that the prime consideration of a corps is its contribution to the band. All other criteria by which the drummers are judged must surely follow on from that. And of course pipe majors who allow so-called ‘mid-sections’ (horrible description) and drum corps to perform in this introverted way and to develop beatings which may impress technically but which hinder musicality, are making a rod for their own back. There can be only one master in a pipe band and it cannot be the leading drummer or anyone else.


Jim Beggs’s Newsletter: ‘I’m looking forward to the Uist and Barra solo competition this year and the Wheel of Fortune event in Danderhall Miner’s Club. Piping is not all about gold medals – these two events are of the highest standard and worthy of support. In saying that, there can be no higher accolade than winning an event at Inverness, Oban or indeed Luss, Lochearnhead and Glenfinnan – the latter three are just as worthy. There have been a few changes recently at various Glaswegian centres of piping excellence – Chris Armstrong is off to new projects, having done a great job at The National Piping Centre. As we all know, Rab Wallace shifted to pipingpress.com after putting a huge amount of drive and energy into successfully developing and  modernising The College of Piping.’


Many thanks to our 4,337 readers this week for their support and interest.


The third instalment in the Ian McLellan ‘Famous Pipers’ series may  have been hard to find for some. It has now been slotted into its correct place – after parts 1 & 2.


The Queensland Pipers Society has the following: Highland Bagpipe by Grainger and Campbell, circa 1968. Mounted in Sterling Silver and African Ivory, this pipe was designed by Pipe Major Donald McKinnon (KOSB’s) in consultation with Pipe Major Donald MacLeod. The instrument comes with a new Canmore hybrid bag, the original chanter, and a 1980’s Naill Chanter. Excellent condition. Price is $10,000 o.n.o; Contact Iain Bruce, email ijb1@bigpond.com, or phone +61 7 55344178.


 

pipers persuasion logoAllan Hamilton the editor and producer kindly agreed to re-shoot my interview for ‘Pipers Persuasion’ and it was completed this week. Those interested can check it out here. A word for Allan and his efforts. I believe he is doing a very valuable service for piping in making these recordings. He is creating an archive which will be of interest in years to come, the more so as time passes. He does it all out of his own pocket too. Please let him know you appreciate his work by sending him a message of support.rw


In the north and want to hear some top class piping this evening? Then head along to Tulloch Castle in Dingwall where double Gold Medallist and Northern Meeting Former Winners winner Niall Stewart is in action; 7.30pm for 8.00pm. More info here invernesspiping@gmail.com