View Full Version : Solo Competitions

07-24-2005, 04:12 PM
Moderator comment: The following post was submitted to me by a regular forum member requesting to remain anon.

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Although pipers need no accompaniment while playing in solo competitions,....drummers do, we get to select someone we know and trust as a reliable and competent player.

The other night following a discussion with a friend of mine on the subject of choosing a piper, I realized that I never took notice at these solo events as to whether or not the pipers were men or women.
I'm quite sure the fact I never noticed was because I was focused on the drumming and not the accompaniment.

Thinking it might make an interesting discussion, I have a question or two; of the pipers you've all witnessed being selected by a drummer for a competition,....how many have been women as opposed to men, or better yet; have you ever been requested?
And if so; did you accept or decline?

07-25-2005, 07:36 AM
Dee, you supply your own piper or two. My advice is to find someone that you can practice with regularly and who can play your tunes well. This way, you and the piper have a good feel for how each other plays and you don't have to worry about the piper royally messing up in the middle of your competition. It doesn't matter if the piper is a ment or a woment, they just need to be solid with the tunes.

Also, during the competion, the drummer is the driver: he/she sets the tempo from the git-go and must maintain it. I've seen cases, especially in the lower grades, where the piper, often the drummer's PM, call off the tune and the drummer gets marked for it.

07-25-2005, 08:22 AM
As a solo drummer, there have been only two pipers that I've used, and both were men. I didn't pick them because they were men, but because they were the Pipe Major and Pipe Sergeant, and in my mind, the two best pipers.

I pick a piper based on how well they play and how reliable they are on showing up on time. The latter is especially important to me as solos are generally well before our band members are required to show up.

Should one of our lady pipers ever fall in to my category, I'd have no problem having them play for me! To me, skill and reliability are all that's important, not gender.

I will say, I've only noticed a handful of female pipers playing for drummers, and almost all them were Prince Charles PB pipers playing for their drummers (including Liza on pipes for her students).