Christine M.(Bunty) MacLellan

arisaigWe are sad to report on the passing of Bunty who died peacefully on Monday morning.

She was born in Torbreck, Rogart on 11th July 1923 and in 1943 she met John MacLellan, then the youngest Pipe Major in the British Army, at a garden fete in the grounds of the Invershin Hotel. The rest, as they say, is history.

When Captain John MacLellan was posted to Edinburgh Bunty formed part of quite a formidable ‘piping wives group’ including Margaret Stoddart, Anne Anderson, Flora Cameron and Jean MacLennan and there is no doubt they added great colour to the piping scene at that time.

Our sympathies and condolences go to Colin, Kirsteen and family.

The funeral service will take place at Warriston Crematorium, Cloister Chapel, Edinburgh on Monday, July 7th, 2014 at 1.30pm to which friends and family are warmly invited, and afterwards at the family home at 14 Dean Park Crescent, Edinburgh, EH4 1PH.

The Eagle Pipers’ Society

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Match Report Tuesday 24th June 2014

A quiet night at the Eagles saw the P/M open events. He was followed by Ian Dewar, who, in turn, was followed by the resurrected Scott Thomson, who played the P/Ms pipe. Then it was back to the P/M. After pies Ian Dewar had another blast.

Welcome back Scott

Welcome back Scott

It has to be noted that Scott decided to make his Eagles debut by playing 3 jigs straight off the bat ending with the great Jig of Slurs. He then knocked off a couple of 2/4 marches before declaring that he was a bit rusty!

Excellent stuff Scott and once he gets his own pipe ‘sorted’ we hope to hear a lot more from him.

So where was everyone? Perhaps late June/July and August is just one of these periods where people are on holiday or immersed in pipeband practices that are omnipresent at this time of year?

trotting out a few polkas

trotting out a few polkas

Perhaps the Society should consider a summer hiatus and run from October to May?

It is one thing to be a member of a Society and quite another to support it. If the same people show up meeting after meeting it will stagnate. If you are sitting at home thinking others will go and keep things going, that is short sighted and will only lead to folly.

Remember the Society closed before. It can close again. You can take the horse to water but you can’t make it drink. There is a social platform available to pipers in Edinburgh.

You have been warned

How long for is up to you.

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

 

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12th August – Extra Date for Worlds Week

To coincide with Piping Live and the lead up to the World Pipe Band Championships, we are holding a meeting on Tuesday 12th August.

The meeting on 5th August is now cancelled.  19th August will take place as normal.

 

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Match Report Tuesday 10th June 2014

UnknownWith the Hon. PM away on professional duties (yes we know he’s retired – but it seems there really is no rest for the wicked), the management of order of play fell to the Hon. Pres. The first piper invited up for a tune was Andrew Allison. “Where’s your mum tonight Andrew?” someone asked. “At home,” he replied and blew up his pipes. Less chat, more piping. The piping, it must be said, was very impressive – Andrew is clearly working hard and coming on in leaps and bounds. He treated us to a few traditional ¾, then 6/8 marches, and a big MSR – Jim McWilliams, Ewe wi’ the Crookit Horn, and Ca’ the Ewes, on a lovely steady bagpipe.

Long-time Eagles supporter Donald MacLeod was up next. I must apologise for not knowing the names of many of his tunes, and not finding out from him afterwards. But they were good! I know he started with Donald MacLean of Lewis and another 6/8 march, moved on to a slow air and an excellent set of small strathspeys and reels, then finished with another slow air and an impressive hat-trick of big jigs – John Paterson’s Mare, the Judges’ Dilemma, and the finger-perfect Shaggy Grey Buck.

Bamber

and your starter for ten………….

Donald in fine formAfter the pie break, it was my turn to have a go. I’d decided to take a leaf out of Peter McCallister’s book and do something a bit different – namely an Eagle Pipers pub quiz. The audience was asked to name all the tunes, and guess the theme, i.e. what all the tunes had in common – all for the super-desirable prize of a mid-range bottle of white wine, and of course the glory. Points were awarded for each tune based on how difficult I thought they would be to name. I got that a bit wrong, as there were a few one-pointers that no one got… Anyway, the tunes were: 4/4 march Mrs. Flora Duncan; a little scrap of the 1st variation of Lament for Mary MacLeod; 6/8 marches Miss Lily Christie and the Sweet Maid of Mull (got it yet?); a line of Praise of Morag; strathspeys Lady Loudon, Sarah Lawrie, and Linda Aumonier; reels Kelsey’s Wee Reel, Miss MacKay, and Margaret McCall; a smidgeon of Sobieski’s Salute; slow air Welcome to the World Annie; and finally the Ladies’ Hornpipe. The theme of course was that all the tunes are named after women (although it was hard to argue with Andrew Gray’s alternative guess, “All played on the great highland bagpipe”.)

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After totting up the points (which for most respondents didn’t take long, it must be said), the result was a fourth place finish by Craig Martin and Janne Hansen; a tie for second between Andrew Gray and the Gardiner/Hislop/Lindsay collaboration; and way out in front in first place was Donald MacLeod.

Thanks once again to all for indulging my geekiness – we’ll do it again later in the summer, but with a geographical twist this time.

The ultimate performance for the night was from Eagles newcomer Gordon Hislop, who had made the trek from Dundee to give us the evening’s piobaireachd. Gordon settled the pipes with a few marches, then got straight into it and gave us a very enjoyable The Glen is Mine. We hope Gordon will return and be a regular Eagle Pipers visitor and player.

Next gathering is 24th June at 8PM, should be pretty much exactly one hour after England’s third World Cup group-stage defeat. (Ok ok that was low, and with neither Scotland nor Canada in it, I’m in no position to poke fun. But I’m backing the Netherlands in the office pool so … so far so good.) See you on the 24th.

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Jenny H

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Match Report Tuesday 27th May 2014

Once the P/M had broken the ice with a few more tunes from his repertoire Alan Harper took to the floor starting with the little heard ¾ The Heros of Osterbrook. After a few more tunes Alan concluded with the

Alan Harper

Alan Harper

great Ally Reese composition, Ceilidh Lines. Alan’s tempo was a bit slow but as he explained later he had been plucking up the courage to have a go at this tune for some time so well done say all.

Next for shaving was an Eagle new comer Michael Graham from Musselburgh. Michael goes to Tom Speirs for lessons and started his spot with the well-known 6/8 Donald McLean of Lewis. When he had settle down he set off into a double MSR with the great 2/4 marches The Clan McColl and The Crags of Stirling. An excellent inaugural performance and great to see Michael on the floor.

Iain Dewar

Iain Dewar

The pre pie piper was Iain Dewar who stated off with the 4/4 George Henry Gillies that was apparently composed by his son Pipe Sgt. Brian Gillies of the RSDG. Iain then went into the Willie Ross composition The Flight of the Eaglets also known as Lady McRoberts’ Lament. Following a fine rendition of the Royal Scot’s Polka Iain concluded his spot with the ground of The Lament of the Old Sword.

Michael Graham

Michael Graham

The post pie piper was none other than the Hon President himself, Colin MacLellan. The Eagle eyed amongst the audience quickly noticed that there was something slightly different about the pipe. A dark blue chanter. The Ayrfire had, I suspect, a bespoke red and white reed inside but this was not witnessed with the naked eye. Colin avoided slipping into The Sash My Father Wore and started his spot with a few waltzes. It has to be said that while these new coloured chanters seem to be in vogue just now the sound is certainly not affected and Colin’s pipe went from strength to strength. It settled so well that Colin gave us the ground and first couple of variations of the Lament for the Children. Once he had knocked that off he went into some competition bits and bobs starting with the very musical 2/4 Marches Leaving Lunga and Hugh Alexander Low of Tiree.IMG_0931

To end the evening it was left to Roddy Weir to give us the piobaireachd, The Groat. Roddy is obviously enjoying his retirement and it would not surprise me one bit if he picks up a few prizes this year. The bagpipe was again first class and he gave us a very musical interpretation of this tune.

Blue ?

Blue ?

The games are well under way and it is nice to see the Eagles holding their own with a first and second in the A Piob. at Blair Atholl. Well done Peter M and Jenny H.

Next meeting Tuesday 10th June.

Euan Anderson

Roddy playing The Groat

Roddy playing The Groat

Hon P/M

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Match Report Tuesday 13th May 2014

The P/M got us under way with a wee tear in his eye as he celebrated his departure from the Scottish Police Service. Whether it was a tear of joy or sadness has yet to be determined but he did start off with some Jigs! Time now to address the golf handicap!

Next up was Lachie Dick who is in the middle of his exams so this was a bit of R and R. Lachie has recently been down in the Scottish Borders looking after the lieges down there. Good luck with the results LD. He was in fine form and ended a splendid spot with the jigs Donald McKillop and The Cameronian Rant.Lachie Dick

Peter Digby enjoying some tunes

Peter Digby enjoying some tunes

Peter Digby from South Africa was a welcome return visitor the Eagles and he gave us a very insightful update to the piping scene over there. (and the Oscar Pistorius trial!)

Pies. But before they were served the Hon Pres. presented a Society gift to the Pipe Major marking the end of his 32 years Police service-a bespoke Eagle Piper’s waistcoat. The Hon P/M immediately donned the resplendent vest and gave us a few tunes starting off with the well know 2/4 March, The Fight for Truth and Justice Goes On.

Colin presents the waistcoat to Euan

Colin presents the waistcoat to Euan

The post pie piper was Roddy Weir who was quickly into his stride starting with Lilly Christie and The Trees of North Uist. Roddy is going to have a great summer playing pipes and perusing his other love, Mountain Bike riding. (well done Mrs W for completing the Edinburgh marathon at the weekend)

Braw

Braw

The final piper of the evening was Andrew Gray who was on piobaireachd duties. Andrew gave us the Donald McLeod composition MacMhurich’s Salute that you will find on Donald’s Piobaireachd Tutorial Vol 4. This was a most welcome airing as this tune is not often heard out with the memorial competition arena. It has some very distinctive wee idiosyncrasies and Andrew made a very nice job of it.

Andrew Gray

Andrew Gray

And that was the evening s evening.

The Games are up and running and the Band season has started so good luck to all.

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

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Match Report 29th April 2014

In the absence of the Hon P/M, the evening got off to a prompt start with young Diarmid Lindsay playing a set of Sinclair pipes given to him in 1967 on his 21st birthday.  Diarmid is fresh from the prize list at The Royal Scottish Pipers’ Society annual contest and tonight gave us a selection including the 4/4s Maggie’s Wedding (self-penned), Smith’s a Gallant Fireman, 8th Argyll’s Farewell to the 116th Regiment de Linge and Within a Mile o’ Edinburgh Toon.  Here is a photo of Diarmid taken recently.

 

RHS_PM D Lindsay

The Lindsay’s a Gallant Pipe Major

Another youngish member, Iain Dewar, played next on his immaculate looking and sounding silver and ivory Gillanders & McLeod drones – adorned with historic Royal Scots’ ribbons.  Iain finished a stirring selection of tunes with the ground of Beloved Scotland, one of the most evocative piobaireachd.

Tom Peterkin was Post Pie Piper.  Tom was remaining tight lipped about the identity of a piper he booked to play at his recent wedding who, just as the bride arrived at the altar, knocked a three foot crystal vase containing the bridal flowers onto the floor with his bass drone.  Tam is not sure who was more smashed.

The Mystery Wedding Smasher

The Mystery Wedding Smasher

Andy Gray gave a very musical selection before the headline act of the night, Nils Michael, rounded things off with the piobaireachd, Corrienessan’s Salute.  Having recently returned to a full cane set up, Nils overcame the distractions of a temperamental middle tenor to give a strong and musical rendition of this popular Silver Medal set tune.

 

 

 

Douglas Gardiner

 

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