As we go live with this new website, there are a few more things to add to this page. We will have more links, and sounds, and some pictures available soon. Some of these featured pipers can be heard demonstrating our pipes on our Sounds page.
In alphabetical order - pipers can be sensitive!
David Adam and Jamie Aitken
Play both highland pipes and our border pipes in the band MacUmba. This is an innovative Glasgow based band which mixes pipes and strings with a big percussion section. Pipes and Samba is a main sound for them but there is much more. They have just finished their third CD, see www.macumba.com. David also has a new trio featuring him on border pipes and whistle with fiddle and guitar. Their website with some sound samples is www.skelpaig.co.uk
Ross is one of the finest young pipers in Scotland, and with Ali Hutton was a student of Gordon and Ian Duncan in the Vale of Atholl pipe band. He studied Scottish Music at the RSAMD and also plays banjo, whistle, and cittern. After a tour with the Emily Smith Band he joined Salsa Celtica, and the Dougie MacLean band. His duo with leading young Irish piper Jarlath Henderson which combines Ross on our Border pipes with Jarlath on Uillean pipes has mightily impressed audiences at major concerts and festivals, and their forthcoming CD is much anticipated. From what I’ve heard it promises to be a stunner. www.salsaceltica.co.uk www.dougiemaclean.com
Composer and multi-instrumentalist leads the 'Fraser Fifield Trio' and also writes and produces music for film, television and a variety of other projects. Previously he has been known for his performances with groups such as Old Blind Dogs, Salsa Celtica, Wolfstone, Bag O Cats, and the Mick West Band. Our border pipes can be heard on Old Blind Dogs CD "Five" and Fraser’s solo CD Honest Water which also features our smallpipes, and Bag o’ Cats CD "Out of the Bag". In our view Fraser is one of the finest musicians to come onto the Scottish music scene in the last ten years. www.fraserfifield.com
Mairearad plays accordion and our border pipes with the Anna Massie band. She is also writing some great tunes which are justifiably making their way into the repertoire of the best sessions. In the band Anna Massie plays mainly fiddle and guitar with Jenn Butterworth on guitar and vocals. Three very talented girls forming an outstanding traditional band, check out their new album. www.annamassie.com
Ali Hutton is from Methven in Perthshire and has been playing the Highland bagpipes since the age of 7. He toured throughout Europe with the Vale of Atholl pipe band for a number of years, winning the national youth pipe band competition as their pipe major. Through this he received tuition from the virtuoso piping brothers Gordon and Ian Duncan. He studied Scottish Music at the RSAMD and also plays guitar, whistle, bouzouki and bodhran. Ali has played in a number of groups and is currently a key part of leading Scottish traditional band "Back of the Moon" plus playing with Ross Ainslie & Jarlath Henderson, Brolum, The Trotters and the Jamie Smith Experiment. Ali is an outstanding piper, and great all round musician. www.backofthemoon.co.uk
Alan Macdonald (Glenuig) is a musician who any piping enthusiasts will know of, any many consider to be peerless in the world of Piping/Gaelic music today. Currently teaching piping to the top young pipers at RSAMD, he has an awesome reputation as a composer and player of pipe music. Amongst other recordings he has two CDs with Margaret Stewart on Greentrax which feature him playing on Highland pipes and Hamish Moore’s smallpipes - check it out. He has also been playing our Session pipes for the last two years in a number of public performances on TV and radio. He has recently re-released his ground breaking Moidart collection of pipe tunes with a CD, and he tells me he has a second 100 in the pipeline, can we wait!
Finlay has established himself as one of the most adventurous of Scotland’s younger pipers. He was one of the first pipers to graduate from the traditional music course in RSAMD and was one of the first pipers to get our border pipes, and play them with a number of top Scottish folk bands like "Old Blind Dogs" and "Deaf Shepherd". He formed "The Finlay Macdonald band" featuring him playing Highland pipes and our border pipes with four other talented musicians. They have made two great CDs for Foot Stomping Records and have been festival favourites for the last few years. Finlay also teaches piping at the Piping Centre in Glasgow, and regularly plays with other bands like the "Unusual Suspects". www.finlaymacdonaldband.com
Iain (Finlay’s dad) was one of the very first pipers to play pipes in a folk band, and played in Kentigern before Dougie Pincock. As pipe major of the Neilston pipe band he lead them to give up competition in favour of travelling all over the world as ambassadors for Scottish piping. They have been doing this with great success and giving much pleasure to people in many different countries for some 30 years. Iain has been playing our border pipes since the early 1990’s and has taught both Highland and Bellows pipes in the Piping Centre for many years. hometown.aol.co.uk
More than 20 years of international prizes in all branches of pipe music including Gold Medals at Oban and Inverness, and the Clasp at Inverness, lend credence to the prestigious Piper & Drummer magazine’s claim that Jim McGillivray is "one of the best all-round pipers – ever." Jim also plays our border and smallpipes, and is an agent for our pipes in Canada and the US. Usually you can get a quicker delivery from Jim there for most models, than you can from us, with the benefit of his advice and support. www.piping.on.ca
The worlds first and so far only "Doctor of Piping" (RSAMD) Simon has achieved great things already in a number of different piping fields. Currently head of piping studies at the National Piping Centre in Glasgow, he is also President of the Competing Pipers Association for Highland pipers, and is having increasing success in Highland pipe competitions. Outside Highland piping he spent two years touring as part of leading Scottish traditional band "Back of the Moon", playing on their first two CDs. He is currently involved in a musical project with Guitar Tabla and Shenai, he is also a dab hand on the Irish pipes. He describes our border pipes which he has been playing for many years as "The best I’ve heard".
Jimi has been a friend of ours since his early days as one of Edinburgh Royal Mile’s best know buskers. He moved on from that and has released three CDs and fronted a successful band mixing a number of different influences in imaginative ways. "Jimi the piper (on highland, border, 'Arabic' and electronic pipes) and lots of friends with stringed instruments; tripped out bagpipes collide with Pink Floyd at a world music convention. Excellent" Review in Folk Roots magazine of the CD Earthdance. Jimi plays our border pipes, and "Arabic" smallpipes, and a highland pipe chanter in A we made specially for him designed to suit a particular reed. www.jimithepiper.co.uk
Colin comes from Fort William and has been playing Highland pipes for the last six years with "The Tannahill Weavers", one of the first, longest lasting, and most successful of Scotland’s traditional bands. The "Tannys" are one of the highest profile UK trad bands in America, where they tour two or three times every year. www.thetannahillweavers.com Colin has played our border pipes for a few years now, and has recorded with them on a fine CD in 2004 called "Fits of Giggles" with accordionist Ally Mackenzie. www.allyandcolin.com
Gordon Mooney is a piper who was the forefront of the revival of the bellows blown bagpipes. He was one of the first to research the Border bagpipes and their music, which resulted in the publication of two tune books and a tutor. He was a founder member of the Lowland and Border Piper’s society, and later Chairman for many years. Gordon recorded a landmark album for Temple Records: 1989’s ‘O’er the Border’ (COMD2031). This is probably the first Scottish album of Border pipe tunes played on bellows pipes. On this recording he plays our Border bagpipes, and also Scottish small pipes, and Northumbrian pipes.
Peter Morrison from Dunvegan in Skye has been playing pipes with the Peatbog Faeries from the time they started about 15 years ago. They have been established as one of Scotlands leading traditional bands now for many years. Peter got a set of our border pipes over a year ago and tells me they have been "A revelation" particularly in the versatilty that the chromatic scale gives and the range of tunes that become available. The Peatbogs still feature Highland pipes, but Peter has been regularly playing sessions on Skye with the border pipes, and has a new trio featuring them with Fiddle and mandola called Bramax. Check out www.myspace.com/thebramax and www.peatbogfaeries.com
I played music with Dougie many years ago in the Victoria Bar in Glasgow on the occasion when Sandy Bells (Edinburgh’s well known folk pub) football team went through to play the Vicky Bar team on Glasgow Green, those were the days! At that point Dougie was playing in Kentigern before he moved on to become the piper for one of Scotland leading folk bands the Battlefield Band. He is now Director of Sgoil Chiùil na Gàidhealtachd, the National Centre of Excellence in Traditional Music at Plockton. He has been playing a set of our session pipes for some time now and can often be heard at a traditional music session in the Hotel in Plockton. The link is to the School which is producing some great young musicians. www.musicplockton.org
Mark is recognised as one of the world’s most successful and respected contemporary composers of bagpipe music. Mark joined the Victoria Police Pipe Band in 1990. Their 1993 CD release, ‘Live Concert in Ireland’ featured twenty of his tunes, and has since gone on to become a classic. Mark has recently received the border pipes he ordered from us last year when he had a great tour in Europe with his band playing material from his new CDMixolydian. He wrote"I just thought that I should let you know that the Border Pipes arrived safely this week. I've been playing them keenly since and they're fantastic! I think many hours of fun are ahead of me. Thanks a lot for your wonderful workmanship." www.marksaul.tv
Matt has made a huge contribution to the collection of the old pipe music of the borders, and has been tireless in promoting it and its particular style of playing. As well as recording a number CDs and publishing classic reference books, he has also been active as a composer, his pipe tune Lindisfarne has become a border classic. He plays one of our border pipe chanters fitted to an old set of pipes he brought to us for overhaul. www.dragonflymusic.co.uk
James Thomson and Jamie Young
James Thomson and Jamie Young are borderers from Kelso and Duns who played together in the Duns pipe band. They recently recorded a CD as part of the new Border supergroup "Junction Pool", a band lead by the outstanding traditional keyboard player Harris Playfair which features a fine brass section. James plays our Session pipes and Jamie plays our border pipes on this CD - they work well together. www.junctionpool.com
Thomas was already an established piper in Germany with bands like Estampie before he came to RSAMD in Glasgow to further his piping studies for three years in the traditional music course here. Thomas has three sets of our pipes, and years ago he insisted on a baritone for his border pipes, which I was pleased and slightly surprised to find worked very well, it is only last year that we have taken up this idea again ..he has our thanks! Since returning to Germany he has set up a piping school which goes from strength to strength. An imaginative wide ranging musician Thomas has recently recorded a great CD ("Homebound Concerts") featuring among others Alan MacDonald and Glasgow tabla maestro Vijay Kangutkar. Some brief sound samples are available here. www.thomaszoeller.com.
The Lowland and Border Pipers' Society
For over 20 years this society has been encouraging and supporting the bellows pipes of Scotland and the north of England, a first port of call for anyone interested in the music, history, events, and much more, relating to bellows pipes. www.LBPS.net