Putting the swing back into 6_8 Marches

I have observed over many years that the simple art of playing 6_8 marches has all but disappeared in the pipe band and solo piping world.   I take great joy in immersing myself in the fantastic music buzz of playing a 6_8 march with the proper swing.  This article tells about my approach to the … Continue reading Putting the swing back into 6_8 Marches

Is Skype too great a compromise for bagpipe lessons?

I have been teaching bagpipes face to face and using Skype for several years, with a number of successes.  The Skype approach is a compromise compared with face to face tuition, but has proven to be a very good one for many situations.  This article discusses using Skype, or other similar internet based tools, for … Continue reading Is Skype too great a compromise for bagpipe lessons?

The difference between swing and lift and why it matters

Understanding these two piping/drumming terms can provide some wonderful new ways to present and enjoy your music. I often comment on how sad I am that many piping/pipe band musicians don’t get to experience good 6_8 playing; the wonderful feeling of playing with swing. So, if swing is such a good thing, what is it … Continue reading The difference between swing and lift and why it matters

Expression and phrasing are not the same thing

As a musical community, we are particularly poor at teaching our musicians correct basic terminology, let alone correct playing technique. I often discuss phrasing and expression with pipers and drummers, sometimes on contest critique sheets. And, yet, I am now clear that many of our musicians, and perhaps even some of our adjudicators, may not … Continue reading Expression and phrasing are not the same thing