The Piobaireachd Society
Patron HM The Queen

News

Melbank’s Salute

Thanks to Gregor Speirs for this recording of  his broadcast of Melbank's Salute....

Ballindalloch Manuscript

The Ballindalloch manuscript, written by Donald MacKay, nephew of Angus MacKay, has now been added to the website.  It contains 23 tunes, and is a significant addition to our collection, complimenting the manuscript written by John Smith, around the same time.  Both manuscript show mainly the styl...

Award for Book 16

Book 16 of the Piobaireachd Society's collection was the winner the Pipes Drums "Product of the Year" award as judged by a panel of 20 expert pipers and drummers....

The Fairy Flag

A recording of John Macfadyen playing The Fairy Flag has been added. He plays the version which existed previous to that in book 16, which is an edited version....

 

Welcome

When the Highlands and Islands of Scotland adopted the bagpipe, perhaps some six hundred years ago, they began to develop the instrument and its music to suit their needs and tastes.

What emerged was the instrument we know today as the Great Highland Bagpipe, and a form of music, piobaireachd (pronounced Pee-broch), which is unique to the instrument.  The music consists of a theme (ground) and variations on this theme.  The theme can express joy, sadness, or sometimes in the “gathering” tunes , a peremptory warning or call to arms.

The theme is developed in a series of variations, which usually progress to the “crunluath” variation, where the piper’s fingers give a dazzling technical display of embellishment or gracenotes.

The Piobaireachd Society was founded in 1901 to encourage the playing teaching and study of this music.