The Piobaireachd Society has made the music scores from books 1-3 in its published series available to members free of charge on its website at www.piobaireachd.co.uk,
writes President Dr Jack Taylor.
After several months preparation, classic tunes such as the Unjust Incarceration, In Praise of Morag, Lament for the Children and the Lament for Patrick Og, and also smaller tunes, e.g. Battle of Auldearn, Lament for the Old Sword and Black Donald’s March now sit right next to original sources and other scores of tunes on the tune page.
This makes it very easy for the player to compare different settings and styles, often while listening to recordings of the tune.
Members already have free access to all recordings, interesting articles and conference proceedings on the website.
The Piobaireachd Society scores, whilst not perfect, give an excellent idea of timing, and their annotation indicating differences from source material is an invaluable asset.
Source material often gives ideas about different timing and nuance, but it is often far from perfect too.
The wise piper will treat all written scores with an equal dash of respect and disdain. If possible, get a qualified tutor and get the tunes memorised as quickly as possible.
It is our expectation that the addition of the scores to tune pages will not adversely affect book sales, which are an important part of the Society’s revenue.
Our books continue to sell very well, whereas the existing excellent digital versions, of books 1-10 and 16, and Kilberry, available through the CoP bookstore app, have only a small uptake, thus mirroring the current trend favouring hard copy books over digital.
If book sales are not diminished as a result of this initiative, it is likely that the remaining PS scores from books 4-16 inclusive will eventually appear on the website too.
In another development, we plan in future to convert all our books into a more user-friendly A4 format (close to US letter size), and also to make them all available for purchase as digital downloads from the Piobaireachd Society website.
Note: The 2019 Piobaireachd Society Annual Conference will take place in Glasgow for the first time on March 23.
The one-day event will be held at the National Piping Centre, McPhater Street, Cowcaddens.
Fees are £35 for the day (includes lunch), and £55 to include lunch and dinner. A dinner-only option will also be available, £25.
A very full day of discussion on ceol mor is planned along with the first Scottish showing of Breton piper Patrick Molard’s film ‘MacCrimmons’ Gold’.
The day begins, however, with a paper by Dr Taylor entitled ‘New Evidence about the Old Competitions’ which promises to be a fascinating look back at the solo competition world in the early years of the Society. Music illustrations will be from John Dew and Iain Speirs.
All are welcome to attend the Conference and dinner, members and non-members alike.
All are assured of a warm welcome. If you are at all interested in this music this will be a must-attend event for you. Book your place here.
- To join the Piobaireachd Society (from £15 per annum; students £5) click here.