PP Ed’s Blog: Angus’s Funeral/ Shotts Contest/ Fergie Book/ Trad Awards

Angus Nicol
Angus Nicol

The dates for Angus Nicol’s funeral in Oban and mass in London have now been set:

Tuesday 18th October – Oban RC Cathedral: Funeral Mass: 11.30am followed by Kilninver interment and Knipoch Hotel wake .

Friday 21st October – Brompton Oratory: Requiem Mass: 11am with wake afterwards at St Wilfrid’s Hall.

Angus, a great lover of piping and self-taught Gaelic speaker, died last week after a long bout of ill health. Throughout his life he did a great deal of work for piping particularly through his association with the Highland Society of London and the Argyllshire Gathering.

shotts-posterEntries are now open for the Shotts & Dykehead Junior Piping and Drumming Championship to be held in Calderhead High School on December 3rd. Entries close Nov 14. Click here for more info.

This is a very well run competition hosted by the 2015 World Pipe Band Champions and held in an excellent school facility courtesy the local authority North Lanarkshire Council. This council deserves a lot of praise for the support they give to piping and drumming and it is no surprise that under P/M Ross Cowan’s guidance their school band won the 2016 Novice A World Championship. The children are pictured top celebrating their big win.

fergie-bookfrontAce accordionist Fergie MacDonald has a new book of pipe tunes out. They have been transcribed by the well-known piper and teacher Lorne MacDougall and have already found favour with many pipe bands searching for something different for their medleys. One such tune is the jig ‘Runrig’ which has been played by Field Marshal Montgomery. There are some outstanding melodies in the book – Donnie MacGillivray’s March for one is sure to become very popular.

They all have a real west Highland feel to them and sit surprisingly well on the piper’s finger. Lorne has done a great job in transferring them from button box to chanter. The book has many endorsements including this from Angus MacColl: ‘Fergie MacDonald is one of Scotland’s finest composers. His tunes are unique in style and have a very Gaelic/ west Highland melodic swing to them. It’s impossible to listen to a ‘Fergie tune’ without feeling the urge to dance. This book is a ‘must have’ for pipers worldwide.’

The book, priced £15, is available here.

scots-trad-awards-logoVoting for the  MG ALBA Scots Traditional Music Awards is now open. The organisers, ‘Hands Up for Trad’, have sent this: ‘It’s up to the public to decide who they want to be nominated. The winners will be crowned at a glistening ceremony held at the Caird Hall, Dundee, on Saturday 3rd December.  MG ALBA (The Gaelic Media Service) have pledged their continued support for the coveted awards. The public now have until Friday 14th October to cast their vote for who they want to see shortlisted in 16 categories, including Live Act of the Year, Composer of the Year, Instrumentalist of the Year and Gaelic Singer of the Year by visiting: www.scotstradmusicawards.com.

‘Among the sterling list of nominees is the top 20 longlist for Scottish Traditional Albums of the Year 2016. Winners will be unveiled at the most prestigious date in Scotland’s cultural calendar, the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Award ceremony.  Tickets are on sale from the Caird Hall box office on 01382 434 940 or by visiting www.dundeebox.co.uk.’

‘Event founder and promoter, Simon Thoumire, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted to bring the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards to Dundee for the second year in a row as we celebrate our 14th year. ‘