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History, Tradition, Heritage As related to the subjects of piping, drumming and pipe bands.

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Old 10-13-2009, 08:20 PM   #1
Ben Shaffer
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Default The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

I won an old Tunebook on eBay which seemed to have come out in the Mid 60's. The Title is The McCullough Bagpipe Tunebook written by a Frank Sterling. On the outside of the book is printed Gaelic Imports ,,5931 W. Chicago Ave, Chicago. The book also indicates there are stores in Pittsburgh as well as Cleveland. The Tunes are Irish in nature. Does anyone know about the history of this book, the store or Frank Sterling? The book appears to have been published by McCulloughs of Dawson Street in Ireland
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Old 10-14-2009, 03:17 AM   #2
Adam Sanderson
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

I used to have a copy of Sterling's The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book No.2. I don't have it any more, but I do recall it was printed in Dublin by "McCullough Ltd", but seemed to be aimed at the American market, as there was some form of American Airline sponsorship logo on the cover, with references to St Patricks' day in New York.

I bought it with a number of other Irish related tune books at a very cheap price from Bill Lewington's shop in London when it closed down in the early 90's. (Lewington's used to sell Boosey & Hawkes bagpipes that were turned at Starck's, but later became agents for R.G. Hardie. They had connections with the London Irish PB). Quite a few of those books were of obviously small print runs, as I have never seen any other editions. There were others that featured sponsorship logos from U.S. companies. ( One, whose name I can't remember but I can see the cover in my mind, was actually printed in New York and imported back into Ireland, then ended up in London ).

I don't have any of these books anymore, (The settings were poor, IMHO, and the modern compositions with old sounding titles appended to them so they'd appear "ancient" were abysmal, gimme Terry Tully's books any day)so can't be of more help, but I can tell you there is a volume 2 out there.
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Old 10-14-2009, 02:22 PM   #3
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

This should open your eyes........

http://wapedia.mobi/en/Denis_McCullough

http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive...649D946395D6CF
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Old 10-14-2009, 06:15 PM   #4
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

Whoa!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 10-15-2009, 03:04 AM   #5
Adam Sanderson
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

I've received a fair bit of overnight correspondence about this matter. Three sources say that the shop was run by Daniel, not Denis, McCullough. This comes from a report in the Piping Times. Were there two McCulloughs, Daniel and Denis, or did the Piping Times get it wrong?

One thing that is agreed on, the firm of McCullough started in Belfast with the encouragement of Francis Biggar, also known as the MP Joe Biggar. They began manufacturing bagpipes around the early 1900's under the direction of the David Glen company of Edinburgh.

In 1926 the company published McCullough's Irish Warpipe Tutor & Tune Book. By then the company is listed as having two addresses, Belfast & Dublin.

The tutor was written by William Andrews, aka Liam MacAndreis, a well known Union pipe player, (Andrews seems to refer only to "Union" pipes, not uillean). Andrews seems to have taken up the three drone mouthblown pipe around the time of WW1. He was leader of a pipe band at Trinity College, Dublin. Lots of correspondence still exists between him and Pipe Major Willie Gray of the Glasgow Police, who advised him. Andrews also wrote many articles for the long defunct "Piping & Dancing" magazine.

The cover of the tutor is interesting for several reasons. Firstly, it features what would appear to be a member of the Black Raven Pipe Band. I'm guessing this because when the Black Raven PB formed in 1910 they wore a uniform partly based on an illustration from John Derrik's 1581 book The Image of Irelande. (This was based on the assumption that Derrik made the illustrations, but he didn't. The artist was probably an unknown Dutchman working for the publisher, John Daye. We can't know how accurate the illustrations are, although the drawings of Sir Henry Sidney's forces are remarkably correct in their detail).

The second thing that interests me is the drawing of the pipes themselves. It's difficult to tell from an illustration, of course, but they look like typical three droned David Glens to me, with the unusual "inverted bottle" shape that many early 20th century Glens had, as well as the Glen type small mounts.

It's noted in the PT and Piper and Dancer that after taking up the GHB, William Andrews devoted the bulk of his time to the instrument, making some pipes and many chanters through the 1920's up till his death in the late 1930's. I don't know if he turned for McCulloughs or not. If the first turners for McCullough, or even Andrews himself, were trained by the David Glen company, I wonder if there are any pipes out there that have been identified as early 20th century Glens that really have their origins on the other side of the Irish Sea?

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Old 10-15-2009, 05:41 AM   #6
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

The illustration on the cover is indeed based on a piper from the Black Raven pipe band. The cover of the original version of the tutor for the Warpipe and Highland pipes published by Walton's music shop also in Dublin featured a similar drawing of the patriot Thomas Ashe also from the Black Raven band wearing the same uniform. Photos and drawings of this uniform worn by Black Raven members were popular in the period 1910-1920's. They were used as bookmarks and postcards etc.
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Old 02-07-2019, 05:06 AM   #7
Aidan sterling
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

I came across this thread while surfing the net, My father Frank was the man who wrote the McCulough pipe book 2, he sadly passed in 99 but played right up to his death.
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Old 02-07-2019, 01:56 PM   #8
Paul M Burke
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Default Re: The McCullough Bagpipe Tune Book

If I recall correctly, there were some versions of the McCullough tutor that had an open C in the tutor section. That is three fingers up and only the D finger down.


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