Champion Scottish piper Stuart Liddell playing his composition "Diu Regnare", outside Balmoral Castle, home to the Royal family in Scotland. This tune was composed by Stuart Liddell as a tribute to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, on the occasion of her platinum jubilee in June 2022. This occasion is of immense historical significance as it is unlikely to be repeated in the years to come. Stuart is facing the castle in tribute to the Queen rather than facing the public on the lawns.
For centuries, there has been a long-held belief that bagpipes were classified as an instrument of war and were banned in the Act of Proscription of 1746.
The story goes that in the aftermath of the Jacobite Rising of 1745, culminating in the now infamous Battle of Culloden, possessing a set of pipes or playing bagpipes them was banned.
Unfortunately, history is always far more complicated than we think...
In my part of the world, “The Green Hills of Tyrol” is a staple of massed band performances. You can count on hearing it at some point at the beginning and end of each games day. It’s also used frequently for pipe band tuning—the second part is quite effective, since you are basically playing down the scale from High A. But this little workhorse of a tune is one of the oldest pipe band tunes in our repertoire today, and has quite an amazing story.