The Piobaireachd Society
Patron HM The Queen

News

A new MacCrimmon composition

Thanks to Iain MacCrimmon for sending his composition, Salute to Malcolm R MacCrimmon.  It's good to see that the family is back composing after a few years off. Although born in Canada, Iain is in the direct line of the MacCrimmon family, back through to Donald Ruadh MacCrimmon.  He believes t...

Is Lament for Patrick Og misnamed?

It is curious that the tune we know as Lament for Patrick Og MacCrimmon, said to have been composed by Iain Dall MacKay on hearing a false report of Patrick Og's death, is known in the Campbell Canntaireachd as Couloddin's Lament.  Ronald Smith speculates why here, and wonders if the tune was in fa...

More newly published Campbell Canntaireachd tunes

Here, played by Patrick Molard is the strangely named "Comely Tune" as it appears in the Campbell Canntaireachd, where it has no name. The opening vocables are Hindo rodin, repeated 3 times, and it is tune 53 in the first volume of  the Campbell MS. And here is "One of the Cragich", one of the fou...

Silver Medal Tunes 2017 – additional notes

Thanks to Alan Forbes for preparing this list of additional notes about the tunes set for the Silver Medal 2017.  Please contact us with any queries. Notes on 2017 Silver Medal Tunes  ...

 

Welcome

When the Highlands and Islands of Scotland adopted the bagpipe, perhaps some seven hundred years ago, pipers began to develop it 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’).

Piobaireachd is unique to this instrument. It cannot be successfully reproduced on any other. (The name piobaireachd is literally ‘piping’ in Gaelic.)

This classical pipe music consists of a theme, known as the ground, or in Gaelic the urlar (‘oorlar’), and variations on this theme.

The theme can express joy, sadness, or sometimes, in the ‘gathering’ tunes, a peremptory warning or call to arms.

Variations on the theme usually progress to the ‘crunluath’ variation, where the piper’s fingers give a dazzling technical display of embellishments or gracenotes.

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