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  • Bucket list tunes

    As i get older (not going to give my age but it is one where some have asked "will you still need me, will you still feed me") I find my musical aspirations changing and I am thinking about tunes I have always meant to learn but have not got around to. Some of these are tunes that are technically challenging, and and others for sentimental reasons. So I thought I would start a thread to see what other peoples "bucket list" tunes are. These are some of those I have been, or will be, working on:-

    Susan MacLead } both great tunes, but always impressed by the way Rare Air interpreted them
    The Conundrum }

    John Morrison of Assynt House } another great tune, an early introduction to which was through a recording a friend gave me of Alan Stivell who recorded it as Ian Morrison's Reel. I also heard it in my youth on one of John Burgess's LPs. I'll never play it as well as Burgess, but hope to do better than Stivell.....

    Rhodesian Regiment } this was a tune that the pipe band I learned in used to play when I first started, but which had dropped out of the repertoire by the time I got to the pipes. I associate it with being a kid learning to march - we junior members would be formed up behind the drum corps to march as the band practiced in a school hall. "Dornoch Links" is another tune I remember from this part of my life, which was no longer played by the band once I was on the pipes.

    What's on your list?

  • #2
    What a great question! I'd have to give this more thought, but...

    First to mind is Andy Renwick's Ferret.

    John Morrison of Assynt House is also on my list.

    Every tune composed by Bob Worrall!

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    • #3
      In elementary school, I attended one week summer church camps. Each camper was given a song book of about 50-75 pages. The songs were sung before/after meals in the large (echoing) dining hall. One of my favorites was the Ash Grove (traditional Welsh). I have come across the tune over the years and start humming it. Recently, came across the printed pipe tune and have started playing it. Pleasant memories of my younger days.
      "Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right."

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      • #4
        Little Cascade. A tune I've revisited over the years, but not quite pulled it together. The tune absolutely fascinates me. G.S. was the Gordan Duncan of his day.
        Cheers,

        Matt

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        • #5
          Doctor MacInnes’s Fancy

          Someday!
          My Piping Blog (recordings, articles, reviews, etc.) - Homepage - Pekaar's Tune Encyclopedia - Convert BMW to ABC

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          • #6
            One tune I've had floating around the "to be learned" folder for a very long time and recently got round to learning is GS's setting of the Brown Haired Maid. One a first playthrough it feels a bit uninviting, but once you get it into the head it really opens up.

            I'm also tackling more piobaireachd; not being particularly keen on competing, I was well trainied as a youngster and I've learnt quite a few over the years but never particularly systematically since, and especially in the last decade or so I've made little progress. I've been working my way through the Stewart's White Banner recently, a fascinating piece of construction.

            What I find myself less and less interested in as time goes by is kitchen piping cleverness. My reaction these days tends to be "oh yes, X did that back in the 80s" or "that's just a bunch of doublings"; I don't often hear something that feels genuinely musical and innovative.
            http://www.callingthetune.co.uk
            -- Formerly known as CalumII

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Calum View Post
              One tune I've had floating around the "to be learned" folder for a very long time and recently got round to learning is GS's setting of the Brown Haired Maid. One a first playthrough it feels a bit uninviting, but once you get it into the head it really opens up.

              I'm also tackling more piobaireachd; not being particularly keen on competing, I was well trainied as a youngster and I've learnt quite a few over the years but never particularly systematically since, and especially in the last decade or so I've made little progress. I've been working my way through the Stewart's White Banner recently, a fascinating piece of construction.

              What I find myself less and less interested in as time goes by is kitchen piping cleverness. My reaction these days tends to be "oh yes, X did that back in the 80s" or "that's just a bunch of doublings"; I don't often hear something that feels genuinely musical and innovative.
              Yes!! So many tunes my band mates suggest at our annual tune selection meeting have a great sound but are all flash or very reliant on the accompanying orchestration. I feel such a wet blanket pointing out that specific tunes really won't stand on their own.

              Anyway, I would love to learn Lament for the Harp Tree. It's a lovely piobaireachd and, as I'm trying to learn the Celtic harp, it's a nice tune for tying my two musical loves together. I'm such a beginner at piobaireachd that I am flummoxed at how to understand the written music for the tune. I really need to consult our PM for some guidance.

              Y'all enjoy your musical journeys as you learn the new tunes!!

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              • #8
                John Morrison of Assynt House is on my list too. It's a great tune. I would also like to find and learn a pipe version of King George IV (not the same tune as King George V's Army, or King George versus army as my kids call it ). Also Fingals Weeping and Hamish Moore's version of Hot Punch.

                Kevin

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Calum View Post
                  What I find myself less and less interested in as time goes by is kitchen piping cleverness. My reaction these days tends to be "oh yes, X did that back in the 80s" or "that's just a bunch of doublings"; I don't often hear something that feels genuinely musical and innovative.
                  Right! I put most tunes in two categories: Melodic or Rhythmic. That may be too general, but it allows me to point out why some of the "gimmicky" (more rhythmic; less melodic) tunes don't work well with our band. Some young students, however, just cannot resist the fast, rhythmic tunes with all sorts of.....stuff, and lacking on melody.

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                  • #10
                    My three are:

                    The Sheepwife

                    The Little Cascade

                    Earl of Seaforth's Salute

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                    • #11
                      I just remembered The Stone Frigate and added it to my bucket list. This could go on forever

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                      • #12
                        Greetings to All,

                        Although not being any Great Shakes--for overwhelming
                        technical difficulty--or--for being enshrouded in The Mists
                        of Time--there are those--that I would cast into The Bucket--
                        to learn outright--or--to refine--and just--to play better... :-)

                        None were tunes in any of the band repertoires in which I
                        have played--but they are all ones--which drew me into
                        them--and two with which--I have--fiddled about... :-)
                        (And hence the need--"to play better." :-)

                        * The Black Bear
                        * Caber Feidh

                        * The Piobaireachd of Donald Dhu
                        * The Irish Washerwoman
                        * The Rakes of Mallow

                        I do realize that all of these are--Old Tunes--but as was said
                        above--some of the now newer offerings--have enough grace
                        notes in them--to sink a cattle boat!!--and for myself--those
                        melodies--if any may be found therein--neither engage--nor
                        inspire...

                        But--and as always--to each their own... :-)

                        Gather your tunes--and fill your Buckets--and have a roarin'
                        grand time of it!! :-)

                        Regard to All,

                        Pip01


                        And now--a Quick Add-On--That Now Suddenly Looms UP!!

                        "Donald McGillivray."
                        (Good Tune!!, That!! :-)
                        Pip01
                        Holy smoking keyboard!
                        Last edited by Pip01; 01-16-2022, 09:05 AM.
                        My friends all know,
                        With what a brave carouse...

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                        • #13
                          I really like the John McColl tunes. I play Clan McColl, Arthur Bignold and next is The Argyllshire Gathering, then perhaps March To Kilbowie Cottage, Mrs John MacColl. I see that John Roy Stewart and John Morrison, Assynt House are on my list also, so who knows?
                          John Bolt

                          Single malt scotch more than just a breakfast drink

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Tervs and Tunes View Post
                            Little Cascade. A tune I've revisited over the years, but not quite pulled it together. The tune absolutely fascinates me. G.S. was the Gordan Duncan of his day.
                            Twinsies!!!

                            I would say I just can't get my heads and hands wrapped around it. I know I could. It would just take me days. Even the most difficult of tunes contains maybe 1-3 passages that just take a little extra focus on those areas and I can play it reasonably well within minutes or an hour. Not so with Little Cascade.

                            And the F>double F>E>strike>E at the end of every part is probably the hardest for me to control. If we were playing the 'lighter game' from Twilight Zone, I would not risk it on that series of notes. Or the B>low G>Low G>B>birl in the Grey Bob.

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                            • #15
                              "G.S. was the Gordan Duncan of his day." Or, possibly, Vice Versa?

                              One of my BL tunes is "The Ruins of Arras" from John McLellan (Dunoon).
                              Part 3 is (for me) a BEAR - It's been in, and out, and back onto my list
                              since 2014.
                              LloydB
                              *****

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