You’ve just purchased a sheepskin bag, and you’re excited to tie it in and get playing. You’ve gotten suggestions for different types of seasonings including glycerine based solutions. Should you try it?
The next tune in our continuing series on the Pipe Tunes of the First World War, and our Battle of the Somme mini-series, is “The Taking of Beaumont Hamel.” This tune commemorates the capture of Beaumont Hamel in November 1916 but it also serves as a bookend to one of the great tragedies of the Battle of the Somme.
Do you have issues with basic rhythm, scale navigation, or gracenote quality? Do you play embellishments because everyone else does? Could playing the simplified version of a tune help you get better as a piper?
Do you have a set of poly pipes? What is the best set up if they are your primary set or your backups?
If you are serious about playing pipes, how much should you consider spending on piping? Chanters, reeds, pipe bags, and private instruction all add up. Is the cost reasonable?
Have you tried circular breathing? Do you need to know how to circular breathe to become a better piper?
Have you ever felt that you were struggling with your pipes, or that they were too hard to blow, or that you just couldn’t blow enough air into the bag to maintain the correct pressure? Can you play for no more than 10-15 minutes, even with an “easy” chanter reed? Have you answered "yes" to any of these questions?
This post is written by Dr. John Holcombe.
One of the biggest fears some pipers have is that one of their drone reeds will suddenly come out of its reed seat and fall into the pipebag, leaving you with no ability to play. If this ever happens, trust me here, it will occur during one of your most important performances. But there is a way to totally eliminate the possibility of a drone reed becoming dislodged, and that is to “thread” the reed seat using a commonly found tool.