Ze bag, ze drone reeds, and da tunes

I bought a second set of Kinnaird’s to go in my MacPherson pipes so they sound real good now. Definitely get the low pitch bass model if you like the bottom joint on the bass drone down low as I do if you’re putting them in MacPherson pipes. They played out of the box, no problems, as expected.

My spare bag which ended up on the MacPherson’s is a small, grommeted Gannaway. I don’t like it. It doesn’t fit very well. It really cramps my top hand’s style. I’ve conditioned and seasoned it (well, I think I conditioned it, my memory sucks) and I noticed it was still a bit damp after not being played a while and there are these little cube crystals in there which I thought was odd. So, gonna let that dry out a bit and maybe re-season. Moisture was a bit of an issue tonight so I might have to get a tube trap for this set too. I much prefer the fit of my tied-in medium Gannaway that is on the Gellaitry’s.

If you don’t have the CD, I recently acquired the 2009 Silver Cap competition album and it is a must have solo album. It is mucho awesome-o. The format is a MSR-SA-HJ, that’s a slow air there in the middle. What’s neat is in addition to the world class players are some really cool tunes. The MSRs are all pretty traditional, the slow airs musical, but the hornpipe jig sets are fairly radical as far as tune selection goes. Were it just a straight up HJ competition at Glenfiddich, you wouldn’t have heard half these tunes. One of them was PM Calum Campbell’s Caprice which I thought was a cool tune, played by Niall Stewart, so I sat down for a few minutes the other night and transcribed the tune from the recording, if you have any corrections they would be appreciated. Pity, I’m about sick of it now though. The moisture in the bag was putting my chanter pitch everywhere and so it took a while to get a decent recording tone and finger wise, especially since I’m sight reading but it finally came together I think, after I played the tune like 10 times. In the same vein of practice I play Rakes of Kildare (out of Seumas MacNeill’s first book) a few times through until it didn’t royally suck (also sight read), so you’ll get to hear that like 3 times. I’ll get these two tunes down eventually. This certainly isn’t a wussy version of Rakes of Kildare, none of that whole bar of nothing but high G taps on high A in the 4th part, no sir. Drone volume might be a bit much in the recording but I’m back in the closet with the wife on night float so I don’t wake the kids and trust me, you don’t want me facing the mic. Just say no to solo bombards. Cheerios!

PM Calum Campbell’s Caprice (Joe Wilson) and Rakes of Kildare (arr. Donald MacLean, London)