Editor’s Notebook: RSPBA Latest/ D McD Cuach/ NZ Piping Centre/ Seumas’s Citadel/ John Cruickshank VC/ Brisbane Contest

Well done to Walter MacGregor and Nigel Greeves, RSPBA directors, for jildying up their colleagues about the inaction over any sort of pipe band summer programme. They let loose at last month’s Association Board Meeting. According to the minutes just published: ‘W MacGregor informed the Board that the London and South England Branch had held its third online solo competition with over 100 performances, reporting it had been a great…

Review: ‘The Roke’, A New Music Collection by Ross Miller

‘The Roke’ is a recent publication of pipe music by the well-known and successful piper, Ross Miller. Ross now hails from Linlithgow and The Roke is the official town tune. Ross, appropriately enough, is the town piper. He has compiled an interesting collection of bagpipe music. He has included compositions both traditional and contemporary, as well as some imaginative new music by himself. By Barry Donaldson The publication coincides with…

Be a Better Piper: Big Bore Blowsticks Do Not Cause Bad Blowing

One of our readers in Sweden has pointed out an article which appeared somewhere on the internet in which the writer complained of an increasing prevalance of bad blowing among amateur and lower grade band players. He blamed the problem on the growing popularity of wide bore blowsticks. I’m afraid this analysis defies logic. By The Editor The purpose of the wide bore blowstick is to facilitate the flow of…

The Final Chapter in the History of Ireland’s Famous Fintan Lalor Pipe Band

Pipe Major Finbarr Connolly, who hailed from Cork, was the first non-Dubliner to lead the band when he succeeded Pipe Major Tim J Keogh in 1976. P/M Connolly held the post for over two decades during which time the band would appear to have experienced considerable ups and downs. They competed regularly in Grade 2 and would often play up in the Open Grade competing against bands such as the…

Editor’s Notebook: George Stoddart and the Edinburgh Tattoo/ Piping Live/ Chanter Mate/ Solo Contests

Another great disappointment of this summer, particularly for tourists, is the cancellation of the Edinburgh Tattoo, largely because of the lack of insurance cover. It set me on a rake through the PP archive and I discovered an interesting cutting from the Scotsman newspaper from August 1970. It features P/M George Stoddart, the Tattoo’s first ‘Lone Piper’. It reads: ‘Back with the old crowd is George Stoddart, for many years…