Pipe Band Competition Formations – Part 1

I had not anticipated my article on Piping Press about the recent World Pipe Band Championships would generate debate about the circle formation for competing bands.  My reference to containing and balancing the sounds with the circle formation were intended merely as a reference to only one of the aspects of the original thinking when the circle formation was introduced.  I also did not suggest any preference for either a…

Editor’s Notebook: Look Back at the Season/ Inverness/ Worlds MSRs/ BB Fears/ South West School

So summer’s lease has come and gone and I think we can look back on a very successful return to competition in both solo and band worlds. Next year will be even better I feel, all things being equal. I think the standards in the Grade 1 bands were every bit as good as before the shutdown – but maybe not so in the solos. A lot of weak interpretation…

1st Port Glasgow BB – Pipe Band Memories and Worlds Winning Celebration Part 2

After a successful 1973 in Grade 3, most of the boys went on to play in Grade 1 bands such as Paisley, Red Hackle/Clan Campbell/Britoil, British Caledonian Airways (Renfrew), Shotts and Dykehead, Scottish Power, Babcock Renfrew and Bucksburn. In 1993, the BB company celebrated its Centenary. There was a Grand Dinner in the Town Hall on the Friday evening at which, amongst others, ex-member Lord George Penrose, a high court…

Review: ‘The Pipe Tunes of Pipe Major Alex M MacIver’

This recently published collection of tunes composed by the late P/M Alex M MacIver, has been compiled by one of his former pupils, namely Hector Russell. For those who may not be aware, Alex was Pipe Major of the renowned Glasgow 214th Company Boy’s Brigade Pipe Band. This band led by Alex during the 1950s, 60s and 70s dominated the juvenile pipe band scene winning countless championships as well as…

1st Port Glasgow BB Pipe Band to Celebrate Winning World Juvenile Title 50 Years Ago

This year represents 50 years since 1st Port Glasgow BB became World Juvenile Pipe Band Champions. The band was also Champion of Champions that year.  Above is a photo of the winning band of 1972. It was taken in the BB Institute in Balfour Street, Port Glasgow, and shows the band in its new Anderson tartan kilts and tweed jackets. We did not have the kilts in the 1972 season…