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Music Discuss specific tunes, the writing of tunes, other questions, concerns, etc. related specifically to the music or music books.

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Old 12-31-2007, 04:45 AM   #1
Ross Anderson
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Cambridge, England
Posts: 210
Default Seasonal tune - with a twist

I have recorded "Auld Lang Syne" the way the eighteenth-century pipers played it - pinching a high B:


This was done on a standard highland pipe - a Naill chanter bought from the College of Piping in 2002 with a standard reed from MacLachlans, and Grainger and Campbell drones with Eezedrone reeds.

The technique I use is to play high A with the left hand fingers down - fingering o xxx xxxo - while increasing the bag pressure slightly to stay in tune. I then put my thumb lightly on the thumb hole, leaving a small gap. I find the tip easier than the side, as you can rotate the chanter to get the right gap at a controllable thumb pressure. Simultaneously you raise the B finger. You can either slide up or snap up, as you'll hear. You may find it easier to practice on a mouth-blown pipe chanter first before trying the full set. In fact, I can also get a high C, but not so reliably. (The Sutherland manuscript of 1785 has two second-octave notes in its highland pipe fingering chart.)

Enjoy - and a Happy New Year to all!

Ross Anderson
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Old 12-31-2007, 07:40 AM   #2
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Haifa, ISRAEL
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Default Re: Seasonal tune - with a twist

I have heard of old Nova Scotian pipe chanters with a small groove across the High A hole for positioning the thumb with the thumb-nail, to make the High B easier.
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