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Beer Tent The general discussion forum, and the place to start a new "beer-tent-like" Piping Related discussion...

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Old 01-11-2020, 09:28 AM   #31
John McCain
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

Very cool. Thanks!
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Old 01-11-2020, 09:44 AM   #32
MacTallanambeann
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

Glad you like them. I have a 'normal' set of modern Hendersons as well if I ever find myself having to fit in with other pipers but, for personal use I wouldn't swap either of my two sets of McGoldricks for any other pipe of any age or provenance because these ones have my tastes for the unusual and Charles' talent to make a cracking sounding and beautiful instrument incorporated into them and they just sort of worked out exactly where I wanted them to be all round. Sadly Charles informs me that he has given up pipe making as of now due to declining health and feeling he has achieved what he set out to do. I can't argue with him on either score.
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:57 AM   #33
McCracken140
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

Quote:
Originally Posted by EquusRacer View Post
I love the comment by Jim Migillivray on the bass. Thanks for including that. It reminded me of a student I had getting ready to compete in Pleasanton. He was frustrated, having a hard time getting the drones, especially the bass to lock in. As I approached him, I realized the problem was that he was standing right near a generator and compressor for one of the food tents, and the bass-like hum was throwing him off.


I was in a ‘soundproof’ musicians practice room once. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why my bass drone sounded flat no matter what. I realized there was a bass tone of about 112hz sounding from the heating vent. So ie about 450hz while I was trying to tune to Bb. Not nice!
And I couldn’t turn it off because it would have been freezing in there lol


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Old 01-11-2020, 11:06 AM   #34
Tom1136
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

Over the years(25+) I've owned many sets from Gisbon to Kintail to Henderson to Nail to McCallum and my FINAL SET(per the wife) is back to Gibson. All were good pipes in their own respects.
When I started down the piping road I had a set of D110 Gibsons. And as many pipers do I blamed them for all my troubles and failure to become a grade 1 or 2 within a few months of starting. I did everything except wrap them around a tree and I threatened that a few times. But as we all do, I came to realize the pipes were not the problem.... but by that time I had sold them and moved on.
Now after many years I have a beautiful full silver set of Gibsons and I truly love them. After retiring from the band most of my playing is for weddings, funerals and church related services. So I have a set of Crozier drones and a Henderson orchestral chanter set to blend with a pipe organ.
Warm tone, easy to tune, easy to play. I'm glad my last set is back to my first set and wherever they are I'd like to apologize to that old D110 set.
Thanks for the time to read and happy piping.
Tom W.
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Old 01-12-2020, 09:37 AM   #35
Imagineer
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

MacLellan ABW - Chalice tops with bronze and silver
Begg Sheepskin bag
Rocket reeds
Henderson Solo chanter

Sinclair - Imitation ivory
Red Ross bag and MCS
Rocket reeds
Sinclair chanter

Breadalbane MacDougall reproduction - Imitation ivory with alloy slides
Red Ross bag with MCS
Kinnaird Edge reeds
MacLellan chanter
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Old 01-12-2020, 10:28 AM   #36
Pppiper
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

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Originally Posted by Tom1136 View Post
Over the years(25+) I've owned many sets from Gisbon to Kintail to Henderson to Nail to McCallum and my FINAL SET(per the wife) is back to Gibson. All were good pipes in their own respects. ...
I have to agree, Gibson makes a fine-sounding instrument. I don't think they quite get the reputation that they probably should.

I too have a set of Gibsons that I played for many years, and I do still keep them around. I certainly haven't played them much since getting my old Hendersons, but I do think that I should try to get them out and playing more often. I've been especially thinking on that since helping sell a Gibson set from a friend who passed away a couple years ago. His widow reached out to me about how to approach selling them.

I ended just taking charge of them for about a month, rehemping, oiling, setting reeds, playing in, etc. I then posted them along with some sound samples online, and they were sold within a week or so.

Once I'd gotten the right reed configuration in them, they really sang. Nice and rich tone, but not overly bold. I prefer a bold sound, which is why my old Hendersons are perfect for me, but I was really impressed with the sound of those Gibson pipes as I was playing them in.

I've gotten much better with pressure and steadiness over the last few years ... had that been the case before I'd went shopping for my Hendersons, I may not have bothered at all!

Cheers,
~Nate
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Old 01-13-2020, 09:52 AM   #37
Dan Bell
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

I'm a curmudgeon about bagpipe sound. I don't want to own or play on a set whose sound I DON'T love. I'm also a vintage bagpipe geek, which means that in order to keep an old set in active use, I'm willing to keep more than one set going (to be able to deal with repairs, ivory, etc...).

#1. Henderson, early 1900s, blackwood (I think), silver and ivory. Henderson Harmonic bass, ezeedrone tenors, Gannaway bag. I will not alter the ivory, so I don't travel outside the US with this instrument. I would be perfectly happy playing this bagpipe exclusively for the rest of my life, but as I think it should be played as actively as possible, I plan to pass it on when I'm done competing. I definitely consider myself more of a steward than an owner. This instrument made music long before I was alive, and it should keep doing so long after I'm gone.

#2. MacLellan, early 2000s, blackwood. Silver, bronze, and satinwood. Same reed/bag setup as the other. I lucked into this bagpipe second-hand at a time when my then-#2 was on loan to someone else. Big, bold, steady, harmonic sound. Very stable with a very strong locking effect. Ideal for my needs as a band player. Maybe just a hair less refined than the old Henderson, but could certainly be played at any level.

Others that I've played: Naill, Strathmore, Atherton. Nothing against any of these; most of the switches have been matters of circumstance.
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Old 01-13-2020, 10:07 AM   #38
Dan Bell
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

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And I dunno what it is really, but something has changed with me. As much as I'd always considered myself to be a good tuner and steady blower, all of a sudden, I'm tuning quicker and playing steadier than ever before. Even working on new tunes where I'm reading off of sheet music, I listen back to recordings and I'm shocked with how little I'm cringing at the sound. It's weird.

I think having found a really good reed combo for my pipes has likely contributed to my hearing things differently. I can definitely say that my bass has become much easier to tune. I could "tune it" before, but I could never quite make up my mind as to whether it was "just right" or not. Or maybe it's just that I'm getting better? Or both? (((shrug)))
Yes! I'm glad someone else documented this phenomenon so eloquently . I've experienced the same thing, and I think it's a positive feedback loop: an instrument that makes a sound that really makes your heart sing encourages you to LISTEN and respond to it better (and to tolerate less crap...), and the more you train your ear, the better you get at eliciting the sound that makes your heart sing...

The synergy between the player and the instrument is real: an instrument that's right FOR YOU teaches you to be a better player, and the right player brings out an instrument's best characteristics.
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Old 01-13-2020, 01:02 PM   #39
EquusRacer
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Bell View Post

I will not alter the ivory, so I don't travel outside the US with this instrument. I would be perfectly happy playing this bagpipe exclusively for the rest of my life, but as I think it should be played as actively as possible, I plan to pass it on when I'm done competing. I definitely consider myself more of a steward than an owner. This instrument made music long before I was alive, and it should keep doing so long after I'm gone.
Good on you, Dan. No matter one's view on vintage vs. modern, etc., it's nice to see you eventually passing on a good instrument (as I will, eventually). Conversely, it's a shame to see good vintage instruments just sitting, unused. Recently, a former member, now around 90 years, donated his mid-50s Robertsons to the band, saying, "The band was so much of my life; and I want to contribute and thank the band for those years." We are ensuring his pipes are being played, and that they'll be in good hands.
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:21 PM   #40
Dave Sanderson
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Default Re: I LOVE my bagpipes

I still have 2 sets that are polar opposites as on my profile, fair weather and foul. Both have full on sound for the various events they are required, they are keepers till I'm done and they are passed onto family.

1. early 1950's half silver and ivory Rudall Carte, Starck lineage, turned by Les Cowell. Band chanter we use use is the McCallum solo, McPhee reed, Kinnaird drone reeds. I occasionally play an old Hardie blackwood and ivory chanter on my own.

2. An older set on Dunbar P3's for travelling and adverse weather, same type of reeds and chanter.
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