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Jock Agnew


As we have all come to expect and accept, the annual Collogue was another success. Also in line with expectation was the hard work the LBPS committee and others put into organising and arranging this year’s event.

Jeannie Campbell was the first of the speakers, and part of her paper on “Some Highland Bagpipe Makers who made Bellows Pipes” follows on the next page. Dougie Pincock, Director of the National Centre of Excellence in traditional music at Plockton High School, and one time member of the Battlefield Band, discussed the influence of Folk groups on the popularity of bagpipes. With a number of examples from old and recent CDs, he explored three themes: -

How the General Public with, perhaps, little knowledge at first, was becoming aware of pipes as they are played in folk groups.

The popularity with youngsters, some of whom would subsequently approach the world of piping in other ways than through the traditionally established route i.e. via pipe bands and competitions.

Other Musicians, who learned how to play with pipes and discover their limitations and tuning requirements - and when smallpipes came on the scene found that they didn’t invariably have to tune to Bb, and could access more easily the enormous bagpipe repertoire.

Ian Green, founder of the Greentrax lable, described how his enthusiasm for Scottish music and love of the pipes had encouraged him to build up a business specialising in this type of music - again with plenty of examples from some of the recordings.

After lunch (and the AGM, the minutes of which will reach members in due course), Cathie Peattie MSP talked about “The Scottish Parliament and Traditional Arts”, and pleaded for support in her continuing fight to obtain recognition and finance for promoting traditional and National music.

Hamish Moore’s talk on “Cane for Reed Making”, will be described and discussed in the next Common Stock.

Finally Duncan McGillivray wound up the formal part of the day with an illustrated talk on “Piping in Folk Groups and a few tunes”. In fact the few tunes came later when, in the impressively high-ceilinged hall, he was joined by Iain Hardy and Freeland Barbourr to play for the evening’s boisterous Ceilidh.