A New Tune for War Hero Sir Tommy MacPherson

Composer, teacher and Gold Medallist Niall Matheson has written a new piobaireachd for a war hero from his home Highland village of Newtonmore in Badenoch. Colonel Sir Thomas ‘Tommy’ Macpherson died in 2014 aged 94. At the time of his passing he was believed to be the most decorated surviving veteran of the Second World War. He won three Military Crosses and France’s Légion d’Honneur among many other awards. Said…

New Music Website Launched by Stuart Samson/ New Moisture Control Blowpipe

I am happy to announce the launch of my new website S. D. Samson Music which has been recently upgraded to showcase my music more effectively, writes Captain (ret’d) Stuart Samson MBE. This gives the buyer the ability to purchase my music books directly and receive them instantly.  Very importantly, there are recordings available within the website for all the tunes as written. It has been a number of years…

Drummer’s Corner: 1948 and the Emergence of the Great Alex Duthart

We are grateful to Alan Chatto, Australia, for forwarding this article from the ‘Piping, Drumming and Highland Dancing Journal’, the forerunner to the SPBA’s ‘Pipe Band’ Magazine. Many of those listed went on to become household names in the pipe band world: Alex Connell of Strathclyde Police, Betty Jeffrey, later wife of RG Hardie, Alick McCormick, Glasgow Police, Gordon Jelly, Billy Stevenson, Jock Kerr, Jim Hutton, Jimmy Catherwood…. THERE is…

Bob’s Tune for His Fallen Grandfather

Further to our concluding episode on pipers and pipe music of WW1, leading piper, composer and adjudicator Bob Worrall of Ontario, Canada, has submitted a poignant retreat march in memory of his grandfather who died in the conflict. Bob writes: ‘My grandfather Albert James Worrall was killed at the Battle of Vimy Ridge on Easter Sunday, 1917. He was 29, leaving behind his wife and five young children.  ‘About 3000…

With Precautions, No Additional Risk from Playing Pipes at Social Gatherings

A report by leading musicians and scientists has labelled the media’s demonising of the playing of pipes and other woodwind instruments during the Covid-19 pandemic as ‘simply wrong’ and that when suitable mitigations are in place the practice posed no aditional risk at social gatherings. Their comprehensive report is entitled ‘Following the Science: A systematic literature review of studies surrounding singing and brass, woodwind and bagpipe playing during the COVID-19…