The Oban Times, 6 December, 1924
Scottish Pipers’ Association, Glasgow
The annual competition took place in the Pearce Institute, Govan, on Saturday last. Sir Iain Colquhoun, D.S.O., Rossdhu, presided, and he was supported by Mr. Percy Thomson, secretary, Highland Club; ex-Bailie Arch. Campbell, Mr. McKenzie, the Hotel, Lochboisdale; Mr. McGregor Murray, Inverness; Pipe-Major J. McDougall Gillies, president, Pipers’ Association; Pipe-Major J. Mckenzie, Govan; Pipe-Major Wm. Gray, Glasgow Police Pipe Band; acts-Pipe-Major A. Hutchison, Govan Police Pipe Band; Pipe-Major Shepherd, Eddleswood Pipe Band; Pipe-Major A. McPhedran, 5th H.L.I., Glasgow; Pipe-Major D. Gray, Singers’ Pipe Band; Pipe-Major J. Swanson, 9th H.L.I., ex-Pipe-Major D. McDougall, late 8th Scottish Rifles; ex-Pipe-Major Wm. McLean, Lochiel Camerons; Mr. James McLiver, Islay Association. The competitions were followed with interest by a large audience, and there were 62 pipers with 18 drummers.
The Prize Winners
These are as follows:–
Bagpipe Playing-March, confined to boys and girls, 16 years and younger (14 competitors)–1 (R. Henderson Silver Medal), Cameron Hutcheson, Dalmuir; 2. R. McDonald, Renton; 3. R. Cowie, Glasgow; 4, Miss Fitzpatrick, Partick.
Bagpipe Playing-Strathspey and Reel, confined to boys and girls, 16 years and under (16 competitors) – 1. (Handsome Sporran, presented by J. Murray), Cameron Hutcheson; 2. A. McLeod, Glasgow; 3. R. MacDonald; 3 [sic]. R. Cowie.
Piobaireachd Playing, open to amateurs– 1 (The Farquhar McRae Trophy and gold medal), H. McTavish, Glasgow; 2, A. McLeod; 3, Jas. McNicol, Islay; 4, Wm. Barry, Glasgow.
March, confined to members, amateurs–1 (The Cameron Cup and Skean Dhu), Mat. Sloan, Glasgow; 2 (silver medal), Alex. McNeill, do.; 3. R. Davidson, do.; 4, George Grant, Barrhead.
Strathspey and Reel, confined to members, (amateurs)– 1 (The Chisholm Cup and Practising Chanter, presented by Mr. D. McRae, Argyle Street), Neil McKechnie, Govan; 2 (silver medal), H McTavish; 3, M. Sloan; 4, A. MacNeill.
March (professionals)– 1, J. McDonald, Glasgow Police Pipe Band; 2, Angus Campbell, Glasgow; 3, ex-Pipe-Major John Mckenzie, Govan; 3, [sic] Philip Melville, Glasgow Police Pipe Band; 5, Hugh Kennedy, Tiree.
Strathspey in Reel– 1, J. McDonald, Uist; 2, Angus Campbell, Glasgow; 3, R. McDonald; 4, Philip Melville; 5, ex-Pipe-Major McKenzie.
Best Dressed Highlander (open)– 1, H. McTavish; 2, Pipe-Major A. McPhedran, 5th H.L.I., Glasgow; 3, Philip Melville; 4, Angus Morrison, Glasgow Police Pipe Band.
Drumming Contest (open)– 1, R. Adams, Millhall Pipe Band; 2,Laverty, 7th H.L.I., Glasgow; 3,Moir, Glasgow Police Pipe Band; 4, White, 6th H.L.I., Glasgow; 5, Ross, McLean Pipe Band.
In the drumming contest there was a great variety of beating. The first prize winner gave an excellent exhibition.
The judges for piping were ex-Pipe-Major John McDonald, 4th Camerons, Inverness; Ex-pipe-major Wm. Ross, 4th H.L.I., Hamilton; and Pipe-Major George McDonald, Millhall Pipe Band, Stirling.
The judge for drumming was Drum-Major H. Duff, 58th Cameronians, Glasgow.
At the close of prizes were presented by Mr. McKenzie, The Hotel, Lochboisdale. The judges for piping had their work cut out for them, as the piping was very keenly contested, especially in the piobaireachd event, for which there were 17 competitors. The four prize winners were very close as regards points. In the amateur events confined to members, a high standard of playing took place, the performances being up to professional standard. The juveniles’ playing was excellent, and the first prize winner gave a very good performance. The whole programme was smoothly carried out, thanks to the hard-working committee, consisting of Messrs James McIvor, H. Lothian, J. Turner, Hugh McIntyre, P. McIntyre, J. McBride, G. McDonald. Valuable help was also rented by Pipe-Major Wm. McLean, Lochiel Camerons, Mr. Callum, the secretary, and Mr. R. Mann. The President accorded a vote of thanks to the Chairman.
The Oban Times, 29 November, 1924
Pipe Music Of The Clans
Glenetive, 20th November, 1924
Sir,–As far as I am aware, the Clan McLean is the only clan that has published the music specially connected with them. Such a collection was compiled and published by the Clan McLean Society of Glasgow in 1900. My father, the late Henry Whyte (“Fionn”), collected the martial music of various clans, with their history and traditions, and a series under the heading “The Martial Music of The Clans” appeared in the columns of the “Celtic Monthly” and afterwards in book form. In this compilation he has endeavoured to indicate the musical collections where the tunes can be found. In all, he dealt with over three hundred tunes. If your correspondent applies to the Messrs. Alex. MacLaren & Sons, 360-362 Argyle Street, Glasgow, they may be able to secure copies of both works. –I am, etc.,
The Oban Times, 29 November, 1924
The Prince’s Salute
Johannesburg, 22nd October, 1924
Sir, –Your correspondent Mr. George MacKay, began my telling us that the tune had changed, and how the Taorluadh and Doubling ought really to be played. He admitted that he had no authority for his statements except his own opinion. Notwithstanding his admission he still confidently asserts that he is right in that everybody else is wrong.
I noticed some letters a while ago complaining of other tunes being misconstrued and misunderstood. From their general tone and the fact that they were signed “Bratach Bhan Clann Aoidh,” and dated from Edinburgh, I take them to be from the same Mr. MacKay. Now, if Mr. MacKay has set out to improve Piobaireachd generally, it would be as well to examine the whole matter further to see if his views are at all worthy of consideration. He is very strong against irregularity, and is wroth at the mere suggestion of it, although there is plenty of evidence to show that it has existed for a long time. For his views to carry any weight, he must be consistent; yet I have heard him play often, and certainly in many tunes I have heard him lengthen the bar with cadences. Further, he has kindly sent me a copy of the “Prince’s Salute” as he plays it, and there is no regularity in it. In the ground there are bars of the value of 9, 9 ½ and 10 quavers respectively, besides starting notes of the value of 2 quavers to each phrase, which he says are essential. This is a sample of what he calls regular metre, I suppose. In addition, the last note, G, in the second bar, and A in the fourth bar, is a crotchet instead of a quaver. What can any musician think of this, and what weight can the views of the author of it carry?
I am misconstrued as quoting Dr. Johnstone as an authority on Piobaireachd, when I mentioned him as a witness only. I am asked to account for the virgins and published style, but do not see that it is incumbent on me to do so. If the suggestion is of any use, what about the probability of there having been other enthusiasts with a mission to improve Piobaireachd, to their own satisfaction at any rate.
Why make confusion by unwarranted alteration? Mr. MacKay thinks he has discovered something in Piobaireachd; but it seems to be the same kind of discovery that the Pickwick club made when they found the stone on which the immortal Bill Stubbs had set his mark. –I am, etc.,
Call Of Pipes
Winding slowly through the house;
humming, chanting, brawling.
Crowing shrilly, like the grouse.
Dancing, lilting, stepping so,
Leaping, laughing, bawling
As the men and lassies go.
Strangely on a mystic note,
Stilling babes a’ squalling,
With sad songs, afar remote.
Fiercely rings the slogan shouts,
On tent years a’falling
Through the din of Death and rout.
Mr. M.S. Shaw, W.S., of Auchenleishm hon. treasurer; Dr. G. L. Malcolm Smith, Mr. K. Nigel Mackenzie, Mr. C.E.W. MacPherson, C.A.; Major Ian C. Stewart (Fasnacloich). Mr. A.F. Balfour Paul, M.C.; Mr. Eaun Macdiarmid, Mr. Francis M. Caird, Captain W.F. St. Clair, Mr. W. J. Officer, Mr. F. M. Richardson, Mr. T. Evershed Thomson, Mr. C.D. Mactaggart.
The following office-bearers were elected:–
Honorary Pipe-Major–Dr. J. C. Caird.
Honorary Secretary–Mr. John Methuen.
Honorary Treasurer–Mr. MacKenzie S. Shaw.
Committee–Colonel J.D. Boswell, Dr.G.L. Malcolm Smith, Mr. Euan Macdiarmid (hon. Pipe-Corporal), Mr. K. Nigel Mackenzie, Mr. Francis M. Caird.
The Committee’s report showed the total membership of the Society, including both honorary and ordinary members to be 296. A was held in the Albyn Rooms, 77 Queen Street, Edinburgh, on 29th February–Mr. John Bartholomew, O.B.E., of Glenorchard in the chair– and proved a great success. The company hundred thirty-six including two members of the Glasgow Highland Club. Mr. W.G. Burn Murdoch proposed “The Immortal Memory of MacCrimmon.” Pipe-major W. Ross played “MacCrimmon’s Lament” and “Macgregor’s Gathering.”
The annual competition was held on 19th April at the Drill Hall, Gilmore Place, Edinburgh. The judges were–for piping, Mr. Somerled MacDonald, Mr. W.L. Calderwood, Pipe-Major Reid, Shettleston, and Pipe-Major Mackenzie, K.O.S.B. and for dancing, Major Stirling, Major F.B. Mackinlay, and Mr. J.A. Gordon.
The society gave a Silver Star and £2 at the Argyllshire Gathering. It also gave a Silver Star to the Northern Meeting. Silver Stars were sent to South Uist and Barra Highland Gathering, the Skye Gathering, and the Mull Highland Meeting.
Two silver-mounted practising chanters were competed for at the Officers’ Training Corps Camp at Stobs, from the “Longmore Fund.” The Committee also decided to present at this camp 4 kilt pins as prizes for a competition in reel dancing for school teams, and a Sgian Dubh as a prize for individual dancing of Highland Fling.
A framed photograph of Lieut.-Colonel Neill D. Campbell was presented to the Society by Major Ian C. Stewart (Fasnacloich), and has been hung in the Club Room. A photograph of Mr. Frank Adam, who has done so much for the Society in the East, has also been placed on the wall.
An ornamental paper knife, gifted to the Society by the Scottish Society of Marlborough, New Zealand, was handed into the Hon. Secretary’s office on 11th June, by a member of that Society. The New Zealand Society propose that it be given as a prize for Piobaireachd in 1924, but as the competition was over, it is proposed to have a special competition for this prize on 7th January, 1925.