PP Editor’s Blog: Grampian Placings/ Roddy Ross/ BB Letter/ Piobaireachd Analysis

Patricia Grant has sent the final placings in the John Milne Fine Arts Grampian Games Association Piping League 2016. Well done to all those pipers, junior and senior, who supported these important north-east games.

Patricia writes: ‘It is encouraging to see that there are new names appearing on the League placings and hopefully the efforts of the Grampian Games Association to promote all aspects of Highland games is paying off.  I know that two of the Games were cancelled due to adverse weather and this impacted on the placings. However the pipers that turned up to compete at the other Games have reaped the benefit.

‘I would like to thank all the judges for their forbearance with me poking around when they were deliberating  and to the Games Committees for all their assistance.  Thank you again and hopefully things will be even better next year.  I would advise that this is the first year that we have done a Junior Piobaireachd and hopefully this will encourage the Games that do not hold this competition to think about staging it.’

Senior Piobaireachd Placings
1      John MacDonald                                               9
2=   Calum Brown                                                       6
2=   Edward Gaul                                                         6
3=   Alan Clark                                                              5
3=   Allan Russell                                                        5
3=   Anna Kummerlow                                            5
4=    Nick Hudson                                                       4
4=   Andrew Hall                                                        4
4=   Ross McCrindle                                                 4
5=  Jori Chisholm                                                       3
5=   Gordon McCready                                           3
6=   Michael Laing                                                      2
6=   Ben Duncan                                                          2
7=  Gordon Barclay                                                   1
7=  Darach Urquhart                                              1

A Great Night of Piping!qslnd-ad

Senior Ceol Beag Placings
1         Calum Brown                                              35
2         Gordon McCready                                   18
3         Allan Russell                                                17
4         John MacDonald                                       16
5         Edward Gaul                                                10
6=      Andrew Hall                                                   8
6=      Ben McClamrock                                        8
7          James McPetrie                                          5
9          Alan Clark                                                      6
10=    Steve Spencer                                             4
10=    Ben Duncan                                                  4
11=   Danny Hutchinson                                    3
11=    Matt Pantaleoni                                        3
11=    Andrew Carlisle                                         3
11=    Jori Chisholm                                               3
11=    Joe Davies                                                      3
12=   Anna Kummerlow                                      2
12=    Gordon Barclay                                           2
12=    Andrew Lee                                                   2
12=    James Troy                                                    2
13=    Michael Laing                                               1
13=    James Dyson                                                 1
13=   Dan Leyden                                                     1
13=   Nick Hudson                                                   1

Tutor Book half page adJunior Piobaireachd Placings
1      Lee Taylor                                                           9
2=   John MacLaren                                               8
2=   Liam Brown                                                       8
3=   Robbie MacIssac                                            4
3=   Finlay Cameron                                              4
4=   Tom Spencer                                                     3
4=   Kyle Cameron                                                  3
4=   Angus MacPhee                                              3
5     Donald Stewart                                                2

Junior Ceol Beag Placings
1       Liam Brown                                                       22
2       John MacLaren                                               16
3       Lee Taylor                                                           12
4=    Finlay Cameron                                                 8
4=    Grant Sanderson                                              7
5       Dillon Finnie                                                        6
6=    Donald Stewart                                                 5
6=   Angus MacPhee                                                 5
7=   Robbie MacIssac                                               4
7=   Daniel Ferguson                                                4
7=   Murray Watt                                                       4
8=   Matthew Moir                                                    2
8=  Angus Robertson                                               2
8=  James Tough                                                         2
8=  Angus Wood                                                         2
8=  William Strachan                                               2
9     Andrea Yates                                                        1

New letter posted today concerning Boys Brigade piping and a connection with Jimmy McIntosh. It also mentions the old NCR Pipe Band founded in Dundee in 1957 with Jimmy as its first P/M. The Practical Pipers Society website reports: ‘The National Cash Register Pipe Band (Dundee, Scotland) came into being on 11th March, 1957, following a meeting held in the canteen…… At this meeting, Jimmy McIntosh MBE., was appointed as their first Pipe Major and George Black was appointed as their first Drum Major/Leading Drummer. With a leadership like this, the band were sure to taste success and by the early 1970s they had been successful as far as Grade Two by winning the major honours. They proudly wore the Robertson Red Tartan……

‘The drummers were well served by George Black Sr., and Andy Adamson, both Drum Majors in their own right and respected RSPBA adjudicators.  These two were also well served by their pupil, George Black Jr., who eventually took over as Leading Drummer and continued the success of the drum corps.

‘The band discipline was handled up front by Arthur Guthrie, who eventually emigrated to New Zealand. This was not before passing on his expertise to the young ‘drummie’ you see in the photo (top), David Alexander. The final Drum Major was also no slouch. Malcolm Stewart was a member of the MacKenzie Caledonian Pipe Band where he was placed in the World Championships in 1966 in Inverness.  Shortly after that, and by coincidence, he was employed by the NCR and Malcolm moved on amicably to first of all play the bass before returning to his favored Drum Major roll …. The NCR company suffered through ’downsizing’ like many other companies, and the loss of key players meant that the band eventually folded.

‘In ten short years, this band had been started, tasted great success and declined to nothing once more. This does not seem much when said quickly, but during that time they made friends by playing at home and abroad, won many prizes and at the end of each season they donated the proceeds to various charities.  Even today, bands in and around Dundee still boast having ex-members of the NCR.’

Ronald Smith has added a nice comment on the late Roddy Ross in case you haven’t seen it.

The second excerpt of Duncan Watson’s close look at the letters from James Campbell to Norman Matheson appears today. Duncan looks at comments on the playing of cadences and ‘open’ and ‘closed’ fosgailte. Read the article here.