Review: ‘Over the Chindwin to Lochaber – A Scottish Piper’s Memoir’ by Pipe Major Evan Macrae BEM

Evan Macrae was the Pipe Major in the Cameron Highlanders for 13 years and served in various theatres of war and conflicts including places in the Far East – but this is not a war book. It is an easy, pleasant read. Evan was born in 1922 and commences with his earliest memories as a young lad, one of a family of four. Despite knowing him, I was surprised to learn…

London and South of England Solos

By the summer of 2020, it had become clear that there would not be any chance of outdoor piping contests. In order to keep the flame alive and provide an incentive for continuing to practice, the London and South of England Branch of the RSPBA (which covers nearly half the geographical area of England and S Wales) decided to hold a Solo Online contest for both adults and  juveniles.  By…

A Day at Inchdrewer and a Passing Out Parade at the Army School of Piping

Lance Corporal McCaskill had just finished his half hour performance and I turned to Jimmy Banks and Jimmy turned to me and Finlay Johnston turned to him and we all agreed what a joy it was to hear a live bagpipe. The occasion was this week’s Army Pipe Major’s Course Passing Out where we three were the panel. It was the first time in many months we had heard pipes…

Terry’s 40 Years at SFU/ New Collection of Modern Piobaireachd Published

Yesterday, April 1, was the 40th anniversary of the City of Port Moody Pipe Band under P/M Terry Lee becoming the ‘new’ Simon Fraser University Pipe Band in 1981, writes Rob MacNeil, SFU Band President. We asked Terry to share some brief thoughts and a picture on this significant anniversary that Piping Press readers may finding interesting. Terry writes: ‘It has been a great ride over the 40 years and…

Pioneers of Pipe Band Drumming

Recently I posted on Piping Press drumming advice written during the 1940s and 50s by all-time greats Jimmy Catherwood and George Pryde. I have now taken a look through other papers collected over the years of my involvement with the RSPBA, particularly as a member of the Association’s former Historical Research Group.  Other prominent legendary pipe band drumming pioneers of the early 20th century included Paddy Donovan, Alex McCormick, Gordon…