Match Report Tuesday 16th August 2016

The P/M's Diary

The P/M’s Diary

Piping Live/Worlds week is just fantastic. A chance to attend so many really great events and meet up with old chums from far and wide for a catch up and beer, however, if you are involved in playing in a band it can certainly take its toll, mentally and physically. The two-day World Pipe Band Championships is a marathon event with the Saturday simply being too long a day with bands still on the field at 7.30pm. Do we need a grade 1 qualifier on the Friday? This snafu lies at the feet of the RSPBA. They are trying but there is much work to do. Oh and let the crowds (customers) closer to


A beer with old chum Jim Stack

the bands. Why, when we march into a circle, do we have metal railings placed in an oblong shape yards away from the musicians? (That goes for all contests.). Enough said.

Anyway with the ‘worlds’ done and dusted (hats off to FMM and all the other prize winners) the focus moves back towards the solo scene with Oban, The Captain John MacLellan Memorial dinner and Inverness on the horizon. Thus, while we had another great turnout at the Eagles, pipes were short supply with competitors perhaps taking the opportunity for some well earned R and R.


The pipe

The P/M broke the ice and rolled out a few selections. Happy to have handed back the Chesney chanter and reed, that was near 487 on a cold day, he was back to the more sonorous, rich Sinclair. To set the mood he included a couple pieces of Ceol Mor before seeking a small refreshment. This was to be the first of many as it turned out to be one of those nights!


A wee gift

The Sons of Scotland were once again in attendance, squeezing in another night at the Eagles before hitting the road back to Canada. In fact there were quite a few International attendees with Derek Midgley, Michael Grey, Sonny and Susan Lo, some German tourists, and the pre pie piper Christopher Lee from Hong Kong. It was also nice to welcome Paul Hughes and Laura McMillan to the fold who are here with the Scots College kids from Sydney, who are performing at the tattoo. Despite a busy schedule Laura managed to get back in the circle with her home band Inveraray and District.


Chris Lee

Chris is on the piping degree course in Glasgow and is having a run with Lomond and Clyde Pipe Band this season, who were a very creditable 3rd in Grade 2 last week. Chris is a charming young man and very self-effacing and perhaps one of the most improved pipers in 2016? In front of quite a daunting audience he fished the pipe out the box and quietly went about his business. On a very steady and well-balanced instrument he opened with some 3/4s, two of Bruce Gandy’s and one that he composed himself with a friend, named Andrew Tennant’s first Tennants. He then went into an MSR, P/M Willie McLean, Duncan Lamont and Broadford Bay. A quick tweak of the drones and he was into a couple of Gandy hornpipes before ending with the classic jig, Alan MacPherson of IMG_3735Mosspark. First class stuff and with that we were into the pie break.

Speaking of Bruce, he and Alex Gandy will be at the Scots Guards Association Club in 2 weeks time, Tuesday 30th August to give a recital. There will therefore be no Eagles meeting as such that night. No pies but a dam fine curry and music to be had. £10 a head-tickets on the night.

IMG_3739With pipes in short supply the P/M offered up his own pipe and Cameron Drummond gave us a quick blast of some of the Inveraray medley tunes and concluded with a very fine ground of The Lament for the Earl of Antrim. He is in fine form having recently won the clasp in Skye and played an excellent tune in the Silver Chanter. Let’s hope he can take this form forward.

The final player of the night was Paul Hughes. Having been cajoled mercilessly by the P/M and the crowd he reluctantly broke his duck at the Eagles and taking the P/M pipe gave us a couple of 6/8s. While he clearly found the pipe a bit strong for him (we can get you a seniors reed from CRM) it was great to see him up on the floor.


Paul Hughes

While Mike and Derek sensibly caught the 10.34 train back to Glasgow others ended up in Platform 5. Not a train in sight but plenty of refreshments in the new pub in Haymarket Terrace. A catch up with old friends that went into the small hours.

13886389_838183089614524_3820626409843581616_nThere are still a few tickets left for the Captain John MacLellan Dinner on Saturday 27th at the Waldorf Astoria in Edinburgh.

The next Eagles Meeting will be on Tuesday 13th September.

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M


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Match Report ‘Pre Worlds’ meeting 9th August 2016

FFF7F3F9_5056_A318_A8DD881B86CE84CCThe annual pilgrimage goes on for the Sons of Scotland pipeband as they once again joined us for a tune, pie and a pint. The band is in their 120th year and P/M Bethany Bisaillion is showing no signs of slowing down. Fellow Canadians, The Black Watch Association Pipes and Drums of Montreal, joined the throng and we were all set for a cracking night.

First up was a trio from RAF Waddington/Halton who are competing in grade 2 this weekend. The P/M has been roped in this year and he was joined by fellow reprobates Douglas Gardiner and Zac Stimson.



The boys settled the pipes with a couple of 3/4 marches that included the little heard Jim Thompsan of Flagstaff, before going into their first MSR that kicked off with P/M J McWilliams. A quick tune of the drones and they were straight into their other MSR The Clan McRae Society, Dora McLeod and The Smith of Chilliechassie. This was followed


Zac Stimson

by their medley that started with the Niall Matheson tune, The Mokwa. The boys sat down for a well earned beer to rapturous applause and hopefully they can produce that form at the weekend.


Chris Happs was up next and was quickly into his stride with an MSR that started with Hugh Kennedy. He finished with a slow air and Fred Morrison’s jig, Skye, named for Celtic Arts Foundation Founder and Executive Director, Skye Richendrfer of Mount Vernon, WA.



Pies. 40 of them and they went like snow of a dyke. Wanda from Canada declared them the best meat pie she had ever tasted. Standing at barely 5 feet tall she managed two! Good effort.

The PPP Brodie Watson-Massey gave us an MSR that started with the great Abercairney Highlanders. He finished off with the RS MacDonald tune Last Tango in Harris. Roddy



is in town just now playing at the Edinburgh Tattoo so a couple of beers and a catch is very much on the cards at some stage.


Tom Peterkin was ‘next for shaving’ (one of P/M Bob Kilgour’s favourite sayings) and Tom was not to be outdone by the youngsters giving us the MSR Leaving Glenurquhart, Maggie Cameron and Mrs MacPherson of Inveran.







The final player of the night, resplendent in the new air cushioned Ally McCoist boats, was Andrew Gray. Andrew has settled into his new piping instructors post in Banff and is enjoying his first school holiday break. He was in great form and played a wide selection of light music before concluding his spot with a lovely rendition of Salute to Donald, which was a set tune for the Silver medal back in 2012 so nice to see that Andrew has kept it going.


The air cushioned AMBs

And with that the night was over in the blink of an eye. As some headed home to charge the batteries for the weekend others stayed out for a night-cap. Tradition and all that!!

Best of luck to everyone involved at the weekend. The mecca that is ‘Piping Live’ beckons.

There will be a meeting next Tuesday 16th August and Bruce and Alex Gandy will be preforming at the Guards Club on Tuesday 30th.


Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

PS. Free to a good home. Requires an owner who will look after them and treat them with TLC !


a story for another time

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As usual we are shifting our dates a little in August to ensure we have a meeting during Piping Live Week.

Our dates are as follows:

9th August (new date) pre worlds evening
16th August-normal night
30th August: Bruce Gandy recital hosted by the Scots Guards Association (£10 per head inc curry). There will be no Eagles night that evening 

The meeting on 2nd August is therefore cancelled.

The September meeting will be Tuesday 13th Sept.


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No Meeting Tuesday 19th July 2016

Due to a clash with Inveraray games and members on holiday this Tuesdays meeting has been cancelled. Normal service will resume on Tuesday 2nd August.

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Match report Tuesday 5th July 2016


Jimmy and Morag Banks

With P/M Jimmy Banks MBE celebrating his award, post Queens Garden Party, in the downstairs lounge of the Guards Club, the Eagles were in full flow up the stairs. Attendances can be small at this time of year, with people away on summer holidays and the Highland Games kicking in, but it is pleasing that the Facebook page has hit 1028 members and we are still getting new young members to come and give us a tune.

There was only one way to start the evening and the Hon. Pipe Major got us under way with late great Willie Lawrie composition, The Battle of the Somme.


P/M Willie Lawrie

This lovely 9/8 March was written by Willie Lawrie of Ballachulish in 1916, the same year as the battle. Born in 1881 he won both gold medals in 1910 and became Pipe Major of 8th Battalion of the Argyll and Southern Highlanders in 1914. He died in 1916 having spent months in the trenches and was survived by his wife and three children. His pipes are on display in the Argyll and Southern Highlanders museum in Stirling Castle. He composed several great tunes, including the famous 2/4 marches, John glencoe3aMacDonald of Glencoe, The Pap of Glencoe, The Braes of Brecklet and Mrs. H. L. MacDonald of Dunach.

When the P/M was done he handed over to Michael Upton who,while a regular attended at the Eagles, had never played solo at the Eagles. On an old set of Robertsons, that used to be on the shoulder of the late Andrew ‘Lefty’ Craig, Mike started off with some 4/4 matches. The drones were resonant and steady. Once into his stride Mike gave us some slow airs followed by a couple of 3/4 matches. Great stuff and now that he has broken his duck we hope to hear more from him.



Next for shaving was one of the new breed referred to earlier, Chris Happs. Chris is on school holidays and is hoping to hit one or two games over the summer. When he had settled the pipe he gave us a very musical Caber Feidh Gu Brath,composed by



Donald MacLeod.

Next up was his school chum from Heriot’s, Brodie Watson Massey, or Gaz to his mates. On a first class pipe he started off with a 6/8 march, Mavisbank House, composed by Calum Watson of National Youth Pipe Band of Scotland fame. He went onto play a hornpipe and jig and finished with a very nice performance of The Groat.



The post pie piper was Nils Michael who was quickly into his stride knocking out some big 2/4 marches. Nils is clearly enjoying his break from competitive piping and was in fine form.



The final player of the night was Lachie Dick, who was on a few days R and R from hospital duties. He was cheered on by Andrew Gray, who is enjoying his first school summer holidays. Lachie borrowed the P/M’s pipe and it was a real treat to hear him again. Once the drones were locked he gave us a first class MSR followed by a slow air and 3 jigs. The first was The tricky Braes of Mellanish followed by two of Lachie’s own compositions, Trip to Uist and Christina Dicks Jig. Fantastic stuff.



And with that we were done. We headed downstairs to join in the celebrations but there was too much catching up to do as the assemble had clearly had a well deserved ‘kick at the ball’.


This is due to a clash with Inveraray games where members will be playing or judging. Several people are on holiday so we thought a night off was the order of the day. Normal service will resume on Tuesday 2nd August.

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M.


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The Queen

the-queen-smiles-001There was no match report for the last meeting as, truth to tell, there was not much to report. The evening fell victim to the majority of pipers being involved in bands and Tuesday being a big practice night, especially before a major. So well done to Michael Chiang, for keeping the first half going, and the P/M who did the second half. As a reward Michael got a full maintenance session and advice on setting up his bagpipe. He was a tired boy.



With a small hiatus in the band season and the games in full swing hopefully the next meeting will be better attended. It is on Tuesday 5th August KO 20.00hrs in the Scots Guards Club and should be a special night. We are up the stair as P/M James Banks, family and friends will be in the downstairs bar celebrating


P/M Jimmy Banks MBE

Jimmy’s well-deserved MBE. I dare say the two evenings will merge at some stage. There may even be a few stragglers from the Queen’s garden party being held that afternoon at Holyrood Palace. It is unlikely that Her Majesty will attend the Guards Club but you never know what the lure of an Eagles pie may do.


What is a pie ?

She may even have a go at the record?


Hopefully two young Eaglets, Chris Happs and Brodie Watson-Massey will be there to give us a tune. Brodie ‘Gazebo’ Watson-Massey to give him his full title. For those of you who follow Pipes/Drums you will have seen the photographs of him receiving medical treatment, having been wiped out by the judges flying gazebo at Thornton Highland Games on Saturday, during a fine performance of MacCrimmons Sweetheart.


The ice pack treatment

For those who missed the excitement here they are. Bad blowing of a different kind.



The Judges Tent

Luckily Brodie was not badly injured and recovered to play again. Chris struggled to play, as he couldn’t stop laughing.


See you on Tuesday,

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

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Match Report Tuesday 7th June 2016

Eagle Pipers v Cold Play?

UnknownA tough one and when the text came in ‘Pipey, I can’t make it tonight, off to see Cold Play’, it was somewhat of a surprise to see the author was Iain Dewar. Chris Martin is probably used to fan adulation (probably from young girls) but little did he know that a middle aged piping rocker was in the midst cheering him on. Viva La Vida!


Iain Dewar

IMG_3555The P/M got the evening under way starting with the hornpipe The Mokwa, followed by a few jigs. Some quick time 2/4 marches followed and he finished off with a few 6/8s.

Next up was Michael Chiang who had a few tunes on the P/M pipe. Despite the blow stick being about 3 inches too long for him he quickly got into his stride playing some light music, before giving us the ground of The Little Spree. This was Michael’s inaugural tune at the Eagles and we hope it is not the last. He is in Edinburgh and currently looking for a tutor.



13307492_10101514760096033_8232200273615157438_nThe pre pie piper was Nils-recently married-Michael and despite his new responsibilities he was in excellent form on a good pipe. He played a large selection of strathspeys and reels before concluding with the 2/4 marches Murdo’s Wedding and Arthur Bignold of Lochrosque.

Sir Arthur Bignold was a politician in Scotland who served as the Member of Parliament for Wick Burghs from 1900 to 1910. He was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge. In 1873 he was a founding member of The Kennel Club. He was proprietor of Lochrosque and Strathbran Estates in Ross Shire and served as President of the Ross and Sutherland Benevolent Society as well as a magistrate of Ross and Cromarty and Chief of the Gaelic Society. It was around this time the bagpipe march Arthur Bignold of Lochrosque, composed by John MacColl, was named after him.

Pies and time for a chat. Tickets for the John MacLellan memorial dinner are on sale and going well. Here is the facebook link. If you want to secure a ticket please contact Colin at

IMG_3556The post pie piper was Jenny Hazzard, who is marking her 20th wedding anniversary to Colin by heading back to Canada to reminisce and visit some old stamping grounds. We were all expecting The Unjust Incarceration, 20 years is quite a sentence, however, as usual, Jenny trotted out some excellent light music while her husband looked on all doe-eyed 🙂

The final player of the night was Andrew Donlon who was making a welcome return to the Eagles. Andrew is from Wooster, Ohio and plays with local band, The MacMillan United Pipe Band, but is over in Scotland to have a run out with the Spirit of Scotland. On a solid pipe Andrew settled the instrument with some big stuff that included the little heard Hugh McKay composition, Angus Campbell’s Farewell to Stirling, followed by the great G.S. march, Inveran.IMG_3562

This got us all in the mood for the evenings Ceol Mor, Rory MacLeod’s Lament. This tune can be found in full in the Campbell Canntaireachd MS and in book 11 of the Piobaireachd Society collections and is probably dedicated to the Chief of the MacLeod’s of Skye around the 1760s. Andrew made a great job of this wonderful tune and it was a real treat to hear him play. Thanks Andrew.

And with that we were done. The next Eagles meeting is on Tuesday 21st June.

Euan Anderson

Hon P/M

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