Posts Tagged ‘McCallum Bagpipes’
Ghost Hunters International Visits McCallum Bagpipes
On Friday 26th November, McCallum Bagpipes had an unusual visit from a film crew making the latest episode of a hit US TV show.
‘Ghost Hunters International’ features a squad of paranormal
investigators who use their principles of scientific techniques, to
explore some of the most legendary haunted spots around the world. Each week the team travels to the far corners of the globe, searching for answers to bizarre supernatural mysteries.
The show was featuring Inveraray Jail and the producers also wanted to visit a factory where bagpipes are manufactured in Scotland. The show filmed the process of bagpipe making and interviews with Stuart
Inveraray & District Pipe Band member Geordie Hunter (who works at McCallum Bagpipes) was filmed playing a tune on the Great Highland Bagpipes and Iain Todd was filmed playing smallpipes.
The show is set to be screened in the USA in February, 2011.
McCallum Pipes Win at George Sheriff Memorial
McCallum Bagpipes was proud once again to support the George Sheriff Memorial Amateur Invitational Solo Piping Competition, held at St. Paul’s Church, Hamilton Ontario on 20 November, 2010. The George Sheriff is Canada’s top solo piping event for the rising talent on the competition circuit.
Competitors must perform a Piobaireachd, March, Strathspey & reel and 6/8 March, with the overall winner being decided upon by the best aggregate placings. In the end, there was a placing tie for between Andrew Laird and Glenn Wapole which was decided by Andrew Laird’s win in the Piobaireachd event. There was a different winner for each event, which provided a reflection of the high standard of performance throughout the competition.
As part of his win, Andrew’s prize included a full set of McCallum Bagpipes donated by the Ayrshire company.
The event was adjudicated by Peter Aumonier, Terry Lee and Murray Henderson, all shown above with Andrew Laird.
Congratulations to Andrew and all the competitors at this year’s event from McCallum Bagpipes.
Balmoral Classic Receives McCallum Bagpipes Support
McCallum Bagpipes was delighted to support the annual Balmoral Classic US Junior Solo Bagpiping & Drumming Championship held in the Mellon Institute, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on 13 November, 2010.The piping was won by sixteen year-old Joseph Stewart of Seattle, Washington won and fourteen year-old Quinn McCormack of Pembroke, Massachusetts won the 2010 Balmoral Classic US Junior Solo Drumming Championship.The competitions are part of the Balmoral Classic, a US celebration of piping and drumming held annually in Pittsburgh. The national competitions are the only solo piping and pipe band drumming competitions in the US exclusively for those under 18 years of age. Entrants were required to apply and meet strict standards based upon amateur upper grade competitive successes. Bagpiping entrants competed in two styles; P?obaireachd and March, Strathspey & Reel, while drumming entrants competed in Hornpipe & Jig and March, Strathspey & Reel events. The overall placings are determined by an aggregate of scores from P?obaireachd and MSR for piping, and Hornpipe & Jig and MSR for drumming.The competitors were awarded points for tempo, tone, rhythm, execution and expression by piping and drumming adjudicators, senior champions themselves. The piping judges were Willie McCallum of Scotland, Donald McBride of the Republic of Ireland, and Andrew Carlisle of Northern Ireland. The snare drumming judge was Jim Sim of Peotone, Illinois.Winners were announced at Balmoral Classic?s evening concert featuring the performance ensemble Battlefield Band of Scotland in a farewell concert by the band’s remaining founder Alan Reid. Trophies, medals, prizes and scholarships were presented to the top 5 place winners. As overall winners, McCormack performed his Hornpipe & Jig set and Stewart performed his MSR set in front of the concert audience. Battlefield Band also invited McCormack on stage to accompany them to a set of brisk reels.Seventeen year-old Daniel Pisowloski of Canterbury, Connecticut, was the first-place winner for MSR in piping for which he received the E.W. Littlefield, Jr. Trophy and a set of McCallum Bagpipes.
McCallum Bagpipes Reach New Heights
Claus Reiss from Denmark sent us some pictures from a recent photo shoot to promote a tattoo being held in Maribo. We’ve seen our bagpipes being played in unusual places, but none quite as adventurous as Claus’ pictures… at the time, Claus was sky diving!
You can see Claus belting out some tunes on a set of plastic McCallum Bagpipes, which he played as he landed in a stadium full of gobsmacked onlookers. Have a look at the pictures and make sure to drop in on Claus the Sky Diving Piper’s website at www.claussreiss.dk.
McCallum Helps Arizona Piping School Blossom
McCallum Bagpipes contributed a set of pipes to the United States School of Piping in Flagstaff, Arizona as a raffle prize to support their education programme.
Their annual summer school was held from 9 to 16 July, 2010 and received a favourable attendance from students. The school had been directed by Jim Thomson who passed away recently, but newly appointed director Len Wood continued Jim’s great work this summer, with the workshop being dedicated to Jim’s memory.
By raffling the bagpipes provided by McCallum Bagpipes as part of its fundraising strategy, the school is able to sustain it’s programme of piping events in the area in future years. Jude McKenzie from the school was pleased to report the lucky winner was Paul Watson, who is seen pictured with his new bagpipes.McCallum Support For SFU Piping Hot WorkshopThe world championship winning Simon Fraser University Pipe Band held their 16th annual Piping Hot Summer Drummer at Silver Star Mountain Resort, Vernon, British Columbia this July, one of the world’s largest piping and drumming workshops. The workshop runs two individual week-long residential courses, instructed by pipers and drummers from the SFU organisation.As part of the workshops, organiser Jack Lee holds a composition competition each week, with the winner winning a pipe chanter and the runners-up winning a practice chanter. McCallum Bagpipes was delighted provide all 6 awards to SFU for the winners of the contests.Jack has indicated that the winning tunes may debut at The Silver Cap competition, to be held in Todds Bar Glasgow on Tuesday 10 August, 2010. You can download the manuscript of both tunes by clicking on the links here:Well done to everyone who participated in the competition and thanks to Jack Lee for the story and pictures from McCallum Bagpipes.Bucksburn Pipe Band To Host Boghall Concert‘Fired Up’ will feature Bucksburn & District Pipe Band and Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia Pipe Band in an end of season concert on 9 October, 2010 at the Aberdeen Music Hall.The concert, one of the biggest undertakings Bucksburn & District Pipe Band has ever tackled, will go down in the North East of Scotland?s pipe band history as one of the greatest events to take place there for over 20 years. Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia Pipe Band are delighted to have been asked to play at such an event and will take with them a 40 strong Band to entertain the audience in Aberdeen. The event hopes to attract a sell-out crowd with Boghall & Bathgate being the main attraction with performances from Bucksburn?s youth and senior Bands where the experience and talents of Pipe Major Robert Stewart and Leading Drummer Scott Niven will command from the front.Gus McAskill, Bucksburn Band President, says ?It?s great to have such an event like this here in Aberdeen. To secure a top class Grade One Band of the caliber of Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia is wonderful, not only for Bucksburn Pipe Band, but for the whole of the North East. Boghall & Bathgate are a fantastic Band with very talented players and are guided by 2 of the best in the business, Pipe Major Ross Walker and Leading Drummer Gordon Brown.? For further information and to book tickets please contact www.boxofficeaberdeen.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or phone Aberdeen Box Office on 01224 632400 or Bucksburn Pipe Band on 01224 312979.Exciting Changes To McCallum BagpipesWe are pleased to bring you some exciting news of improvements to McCallum Bagpipes.McCallum Bagpipes has been using a new alloy on our mounts instead of nickel and in fact, we have been using it since the end of last year. The mounts will be made by us, so it means we will be able to thread them, and therefore thread the wood as well, so that all the ferrules, ringcaps, projecting mounts and hemp retainers will be threaded from now on. It?s a big step forward, and will be a good selling point as well. All the projecting mounts have been threaded for several months, so the next logical progression was to thread all the parts. The threaded mounts, which some people in the market place prefer, takes us on to the same level as some of the hand makers.
The new alloy won?t tarnish, which is another thing positive, as Nickel can tarnish pretty quickly and once it gets too bad, it?s impossible to clean.We?re changing the imitation ivory as well, to a much stronger material, which again will be easier to thread, but wont chip. It?s a better colour than the whiter material we used before and it looks more like ivory, so it has a lot of positives.Finally; the biggest positive of all, there is no change in price!You can find out more about the new range in our new threaded mount brochure.
Centenary Presentation For Terry Tully
Pipe Major Terry Tully of St Laurence O?Toole Pipe Band was presented with a set of full silver McCallum Bagpipes by Stuart McCallum at the bands 100th anniversary dinner. The band made the presentation to Terry for his outstanding service over the years. All of the band’s members had contributed to this fantastic gift.Terry has led the band to major championships successes in recent seasons, topped off by a Champion of Champions title in 2008. Last season, the band achieved its highest ever placing at the World Pipe Band Championships, taking third place with two fantastic performances.Terry immediately struck up the pipes and played a tune for the occasion’s guests. You can enjoy Terry’s first set on his new McCallum Bagpipes here: Congratulations to everyone in the band on reaching their centenary milestone from McCallum Bagpipes.
McCallum Bagpipes Roadshow Raises Money For Donald Macleod Memorial ContestThe McCallum Bagpipes Roadshow traveled to Dingwall recently to help raise funds for the Donald Macleod Memorial Contest.Pictured with the McCallum Bagpipes Roadshow team are Don Smith who organised the event, Rona Lightfoot, and Susan and Fiona Macleod, Donald?s two daughters who travelled up from Glasgow for the night.Don Smith said ?The Roadshow was a great success attracting a good and knowledgeable audience, who were treated to crisp and musical performances on well set up pipes. I personally thought the evening went well and hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did. It is very much appreciated that McCallum Bagpipes agreed to donate the proceeds of the evening to the Donald MacLeod Memorial competition which is organised and run by The Lewis & Harris Piping Society in Stornoway each April.The atmosphere of the evening was all added to by the presence of Donald?s daughters Susan and Fiona who had travelled up from Glasgow for the evening and a couple of renditions of Susan MacLeod went down well.?
McCallum Bagpipes Reach Kazakhstan Summit
McCallum Bagpipes player Jonathon Richards found Scottish conditions to practice in while in the mountains of Almaty, Kazakhstan.
“I have played them in the mountains, although there is a risk of avalanche and also when its very cold (minus 25) and very dry. Occasionally one of the drones cuts out… but that could just be my playing!” Jonathon said.
Jonathon is in Kazakhstan in the capacity of Director of Music at Haileybury Almaty, a brand new English speaking Public school established in the country to cater for children of well-to-do Kazakhstani families, as well as ex-pats. The school offers a traditional British education and music has a high priority. ”Bagpipes have been used here for centuries, although I sense that the early models, which I have seen displayed in the Almaty Museum of Folk Music, were unlikely to have had the same smoothness of tone that McCallum Bagpipes produce.”
Jonathon pipes regularly at functions in the ex-pat community, as seen above with his McCallum Bagpipes at a Burns Supper held in Almaty.
Thanks to Jonathon for the great story and for flying the McCallum Bagpipes flag in Kazakhstan!
Coughlin Wins PPBSO (Toronto Branch) Knockout
Kyle Coughlin of Toronto Police Pipe Band won the 2010 PPBSO (Toronto Branch) Amateur Solo Piping Knockout Series held in front of a packed audience at the Moss Park Armoury, Ontario on Saturday 6 March, 2010.
McCallum Bagpipes was pleased to support the competition, after meeting with Rob McKenzie of the PPBSO while in Lorient, Brittany last summer. A McCallum MC? Solo Chanter was donated to the competition to be awarded to the winner. Kyle (pictured above) is a very talented young piper and Rob reports that he will put his new chanter to very good use.
Eric Bruce, Grade 5 piper of the day and winner of a McCallum Bagpipes practice chanter. He is 12 years old, from Richmond Hill, ON
Sam Goodwin, Grade 3 piper of the day. Sam lives in Toronto and
studies piping with Gail Brown. He won the top prize – a McCallum MC? Solo Chanter.
Alex Seto, Grade 4 piper of the day and winner of a McCallum Bagpipes practice chanter. Alex studies with Jim McGillivray at St. Andrew’s College in Aurora Ontario, and won the Grade 4 March contest against a field of 16 competitors.
Liam Melville, Grade 2 piper of the day and winner of a McCallum Bagpipes practice chanter. Liam lives in Refrew Ontario, plays with the Arnprior MacNab Pipe Band, and studies with Ross Brown.
McCallum Bagpipes would like to congratulate all of the prize winners.
The Sound of McCallum Bagpipes Reaches Kathmandu
Robin Robertson is a 13 year old, Grade 3 piper from Calgary, Alberta, Canada traveling with his parents for the year and sharing the music of his McCallum Bagpipes in some pretty unusual places.
When planning our trip Robin insisted he bring his pipes along as he wanted to continue to play and it made it his own journey rather than simply travelling along with Mom and Dad. We started in Australia, having the opportunity to play with the Launceston St. Andrews Caledonian Pipe Band and enjoy a weekend workshop with the majority of Tasmanian pipers and drummers. The next stage of the trip brought our family to Kathmandu, Nepal where we’ve spent the last 5 months.
Here we live in a close cluster of houses so practices cannot go unnoticed and before we knew it, Robin was involved in all manner of events to perform on his pipes. He’s played at a Hindu wedding, a German Bakery’s Christmas event, several schools, a running of the Himalayan Hash House Harrier group and private functions. In each case, just assembling the pipes stops traffic. Although there are pipes among some of the Gurkha members of the British Army, they’re a rare sight here. At the school events, Robin has delighted the kids by playing several tunes before completely disassembling the pipes for demonstration purposes, then he reassembles and continues to play. The kids are mesmerized by this display and performance.
At a hilltop Hindu temple, an elderly Nepalese gentleman, offered to play his reed horn for us as we headed out for the day’s trek. To his surprise, Robin responded by pulling out his practice chanter. As the wordless conversation began and the instruments were mutually explored, they began to alternate, playing for one another, tune after tune on these strangely related instruments. The tunes were quite different but the broad grins matched very well!
The most recent and perhaps most anticipated performance was at the Himalayan Hoolie, a Robbie Burns celebration held at the Stirling Club of Kathmandu. Piping in the faux haggis (the organizers were unable to import the required delicacy in time for the event this year) and providing several sets for the group, Robin had the opportunity to don his kilt and kit, tuck in his Kukuri (Gurkha knife he’s wearing as a Skian Dubh) and enjoy the company of people who had some prior experience with pipe music.
The travels continue and next we’ll be looking for an opportunity to pipe with others in Brittany, France. When Robin returns home and to the Ogden Legion Pipe Band in Calgary, he’ll be thrilled to be among his friends again but the experiences he’s having as a young solo piper abroad are sure to stay with him for years to come!
McKenzie Strikes Silver In Kansas City
Brian McKenzie of Seattle struck silver not once, but twice at this years MHAF Winter Storm Silver Medal, held in Kansas City on Friday 16 January, 2010. Brian’s first place with his ‘Lament for Mary MacLeod’ won him the MHAF Silver Medal for Piobaireachd, $500 cash and a set of Sterling Silver mounted McCallum Bagpipes.
Other competitors in the prize list, namely Will Nichols, Elizabeth Sheridan, David Wilton and Derek Midgley won wooden models of the McCallum MC? Solo Chanter. Brian is pictured above receiving his awards from MWPBA President Drew Hoinacki and James Moore of Henderson Imports.
McCallum Bagpipes has been a strong supporter of the Midwest Highland Arts Fund’s Winter Storm weekend and is proud to sponsor the solo piping events. Congratulations to all of the prize winners and to everyone at MHAF on creating a wonderful day of piping.
Thanks to Henry Spangler of MHAF for providing the photography.
McCallum Success At Gordon Duncan Memorial
Willie McCallum of Bearsden won the prestigious Gordon Duncan Memorial Invitational Solo Piping Competition in Glasgow’s National Piping Centre on Sunday 17 January, 2010. With one first and two third placings, Willie took overall first place and chalked up yet another top spot for the McCallum MC? Solo Chanter.
The event consists of a gruelling three-leg performance fought over by world class invited competitors, who are required to play individual sets of Scottish, Irish & Breton music.
Also in the prize list was former winner and McCallum Pipe Chanter player Sylvain Hamon of Brittany, who took third place overall. Other competitors included Xavier Boderiou, former winner Alexis Meunier, Stuart Liddell & Alen Tully.
McCallum Bagpipes was delighted as ever to be sponsor of this fantastic competition organised by the Gordon Duncan Memorial Trust. Our thanks also to John Slavin for the photography.
George Sheriff Memorial Winner Takes McCallum Prize
The 2009 George Sheriff Memorial Invitational Solo Piping Competition was won by Richard Gillies from Portland, Oregon (right) on 21 November, 2009.
The ‘Sheriff Memorial’ takes place every year in Hamilton in Ontario, Canada and brings 10 of the year’s best amateur soloists together to compete at what is now established as a prestigious date in the North American piping calendar.
Richard won the event with first places in the Piobaireachd and 6/8 Marches and third in the March, Strathspey & Reel. Richard won a full set of McCallum Bagpipes which he can be seen here with. Organiser Bob Worrall reported that the competition was a great success and added that Richard is delighted with his new McCallum Bagpipes.
North West England Piping Society Competition
McCallum Bagpipes player Cameron Neve, a piper with Greater Manchester Army Cadets Pipe Band won the Seumas MacNeill trophy for the juvenile march competition at the recent North West England Piping Society Competition. The competition was judged by Pipe Major Gordon Walker and piper Kevin McNulty, both from Mauchline & District Pipe Band, who performed a recital at night after the competition.
Cameron is pictured above with Allan Hamilton, who presented the prizes on the day. Our thanks to Owen Nash for providing the story and picture.
2009 Aberdeen & District Piping Society Practice Chanter Competition Results
McCallum Bagpipes was once again pleased to support the Aberdeen & District Piping Society Practice Chanter Competition for young, developing pipers in the area.Prize-winners in the front row are Alistair Webster who was 1st in the Chanter event, Kierin Addison who was second in the Piping and overall winner Lewis Maitland Each of the prize winners received a McCallum Bagpipes practice chanter and the overall winner won a McCallum Bagpipes pipe bag. Absent from the picture is secretary Robert Thomson, who George Greig would like to thank for his hard work in organising this year’s competition.Congratulations to all of the prize winners from McCallum Bagpipes.
McCallum Player Practices For Scottish Titanic Re-make
McCallum Bagpipes player Brian Young has been practicing hard for the Scottish remake of the epic film Titanic. Just a bit bit of fun on our part, but Brian was kind enough to send in a some pictures of him on the bow of his ship ‘Tyco Decisive’ in the Gulf of Aden.
A keen piper with Maine Public Safety Pipe & Drum Corps in the USA, Brian is able to maintain his piping practice schedule on-board the vessel, which is his home as well as his work while he is on the Arabian Sea.
Brian’s ship is large enough that he can practice with his McCallum Bagpipes on deck without disturbing his colleagues. Brian told us “The Captain says me and my pipes are an excellent anti-pirate device…”.Pictured here on the left with fellow piper Brendan Murphy, Brian told us more about his band and himself. Brian said “The Maine Public Safety Pipe & Drum Corps is a non-profit organization made up of public safety members and their families -(Military, Police, Fire, Dispatch). Our mission is to honour all public safety personnel both locally and nationally by providing Scottish music for funerals and memorials without any cost. We also represent the men and women of Maine’s Public Safety by participating in a variety of events, such as funerals, memorials, fairs, community events, parades, Highland Game & gatherings.I started taking lessons in 2001 and joined the Corps in 2008. As a kid growing up in New York, my father (an Irish New York City Police Officer) brought me into New York City to hear the NYPD Emerald Society Pipes & Drums perform at many events. Ever since then, I had always wanted to take up the pipes. Right after the events of 9/11, I was compelled to learn.Currently, I am in the US Merchant Marine; I sail as a Chief Engineeraboard an American-crewed, ocean-going cableship. We have layed, buried and repaired fiber-optic communications cables all over the world. As of November, 2009, we are in the Arabian Sea, installing a cable from Djibouti to Oman and India. I have been going to sea since 1987.Since joining the MPSPDC, I have been bringing my bagpipes out to theship. I practice every day in the bowels of the engine room. The diesel engines drown out the tunes, but it’s a great way to ‘escape’ from the day’s work.”
We are always keen to hear good news stories about where McCallum Bagpipes end up. Thanks to Brian for getting in touch and keep up the good work protecting the ‘Tyco Decisive’ from pirates!
McCallum Wins Sixth Springbank Invitational Title
Willie McCallum of Bearsden won an outstanding sixth title at the Springbank Invitational Solo Piping Competition held in Campbeltown on Saturday 12 September, 2009, chalking up another success for the MC? Solo Chanter, which he developed with McCallum Bagpipes.
Willie took second place in the Piobaireachd, and two firsts in the March, Strathspey & Reel and 6/8 March to guarantee his overall winner status.
Also competing were Gordon Walker, Dougie Murray, Niall Stewart, Jimmy Murray, Roddy MacLeod, Angus MacColl & Stuart Liddell.McCallum Making Tailor Made ChanterJoeri Besnyoi is Pipe Major of the fast growing Concord Pipe Band from the Netherlands. The band is currently playing in Grade 3A after playing in Grade 4B only in 2006. Joeri has been playing the pipes since he was 10 and last year he was getting trouble with his top hand. Focal dystonia was prognosed witch is a neurologic problem of which one in 200 musicians suffer. The condition results in the fingers not doing what you want them to do. For example when you want to play a ‘high G’ gracenote, you will also lift your ‘F’ finger. After experimenting Joeri noticed that playing in a different hand position he could play with no problem. He contacted McCallum Bagpipes and Stuart offered to help him with making a special chanter by putting the hand in a different position. The chanter was ready in April this year and Joeri could play again after 6 months of not playing. The chanter has valves which are made by one of the best flute makers in Amsterdam. The sound is just as good as a normal chanter. Tuning is different as screws are used instead of regular tape. Joeri wrote: ?Stuart I would like to thank you, Kenny and the rest of the McCallum team for all your help and time to get me playing again. Also I would like to thank Rory Grossart for his knowledge and advice. All the best, Joeri Besnyoi”
Quimper Festival de Cornouaille Junior Prize Winner
McCallum Bagpipes enjoys a close relationship with the piping and Bagad culture of Brittany and the company is always keen to support the development of the art in the region. McCallum Bagpipes was delighted to donate a set of AB4 deluxe bagpipes to Festival de Cornouaille for the winner of the junior solo piping event held in Quimper on 17 August, 2009.
The overall winner of the junior competition was Anne Clemence Van Langhenhove, who was presented her new set of AB4 deluxe bagpipes by Yann Pelliett, owner of Ti Ar Sonerien one McCallum Bagpipes‘ Breton Distributors.
Many congratulations to Anne, we hope you enjoy many years of success with your new bagpipe. We also wish the Festival de Cornouaille continued success with their event.
McColl Wins McCallum Bagpipes Todds Bar Challenge
Angus McColl of Oban won the 2009 Todds Bar Challenge sponsored by McCallum Bagpipes, which was held in the University of Strathclyde on Thursday 13 August, 2009.
A large audience packed out Todds Bar for the annual piping event organised by Willie McCallum, which brings together some of the world’s top soloists for an afternoon of top class piping as part of Glasgow’s Piping Live festival.
Todds Bar has continued to prove itself as the perfect venue to host this event, with enough space and facilities to handle the large numbers who attend.
Stuart Liddell, Alasdair Gillies and Alan Bevan lined up against Angus, who emerged as winner of the event for the second year in succession. Angus is pictured here receiving his award from McCallum Bagpipes Director Stuart McCallum.
McCallum Bagpipes Reaches Out To Summer School
The annual College of Piping California Summer School took place this June, coinciding with San Diego Highland Games. The summer school is organised by John Keys and attracts piping students from all over North America. The California Summer School of Piping offers intensive instruction by four Scottish professional pipers and one talented American piper, in the playing and maintenance of the Great Highland Bagpipe.
Emphasis is placed on Marches, Strathspeys, Airs, Reels, Jigs and Hornpipes. Optional classes are offered in the afternoon, such as Piobaireachd, reedmaking, pipe band techniques and bagpipe maintenance.
Nightly lectures and recitals are offered by the instructors demonstrating prize-winning piping and presenting some interesting history about bagpipes and piping.
To help support the financing of the summer school, McCallum Bagpipes provided the College of Piping with a full set of McCallum Bagpipes to raffle. The bagpipes were won by Jim Rusk from Sterling, Colorado.
Scandinavian Open Pipe Band Championships Success
McCallum Bagpipes was proud to sponsor this year’s Scandinavian Open Pipe Band Championships which took place this May in Denmark.
Heather Pipes & Drums took the overall Champion of Champions award, winning Grade 2.
Congratulations to the Pipe Band Association of Scandinavia and all of the pipe bands for putting on a fantastic event.
McCallum Bagpipes Recital Helps BAG Association
Having arrived by air, train and road, the various members of the McCallum Bagpipes Roadshow put the jigsaw together in Muhlhausen, which is a small town near to Heidelberg and Frankfurt. On Saturday evening, 25 April, 2009 we played before a packed and enthusiastic audience who clapped and whooped through the repertoire of solo, small and group piping.The visit was memorable with the perfect organisation and hospitality of Kilts & More owner Donald McPhee, “Many thanks for the concert, it was very well appreciated by everyone! 164 paying guests, so in total over 200 folks thoroughly enjoyed an entertaining evening, a night to remember.”McCallum Bagpipes is a well respected company in Germany and events like this certainly helps keep up a good relationships with existing customers and potential customers. The donation of ?1500 (takings at the door) was very well accepted by the BAG and will be used to sponsor the All German Pipe Band Championships. The kind donation will be mentioned on the BAG website and discussed in the BAG Forum.“It was a real pleasure meeting Willie and Sylvain in person for the first time, you’re great guys and a pleasure to know. You’re all great guys and welcome here any time!? All expenses were paid by McCallum Bagpipes and Kilts & More, and a great night was had by all.
Lyons Success With McCallum Chanter
Ian Lyons enjoyed more major success with his competing chanter of choice – the McCallum Pipe Chanter over the Easter weekend in Hastings, New Zealand, winning the Comumn na Piobaireachd New Zealand Gold Medal.
In addition to taking the prestigious Gold Medal, Ian competed in several other categories, placing 2nd in the Open March, Strathspey & Reel, 3rd in the Open 6/8 March, 3rd in the Open 2 x 2/4 Marches and 4th in the Open Strathspey & Reel competitions.
Ian is pictured (right) with his spoils from the day. McCallum Bagpipes wishes Ian many congratulations.
McCallum Bagpipes Take To The Road
The McCallum Bagpipes Roadshow headed west on the weekend of Friday 27 and Saturday 28 February, 2009, stopping off in Campbeltown and Inveraray.
Soloists Rory Grossart, Willie McCallum, Stuart McCallum, Sylvain Hamon, Steven Leask, Kenny MacLeod and McCallum Bagpipes MC Allan Hamilton took to the stage for appreciative audiences in support of the Kintyre Piping Society and Inveraray & District Pipe Band respectively, with both organisations collecting the proceeds towards their funds. McCallum Bagpipes also underwrote all of the expenses for both recitals.
Watch out for McCallum Bagpipes Roadshows near you.
McCallum Success at Metro Cup
Willie McCallum of Bearsden won the 2009 Metro Cup Invitational Solo Piping Competition held in Newark, New Jersey on Saturday 21 February, 2009.
Willie was playing a brand new set of McCallum Bagpipes with his own McCallum MC? Solo Chanter and this was Willie’s first success without his trusty Henderson pipes, which he had played for 25 years. Willie won last year’s Metro Cup playing his Henderson pipes, so he was particularly delighted to maintain his high standards with his new set of McCallum Bagpipes. McCallum Bagpipes is proud to have Willie playing McCallum Bagpipes and we wish him many successes in the future with his new instrument.
Meunier Wins The Gordon Duncan Memorial
The prestigious and exciting Gordon Duncan Memorial Invitational Solo Piping Competition took place in Glasgow’s Central Hotel on Sunday 25 January, 2009.
The event consists of a gruelling three-leg performance from world class competitors, who are required to play individual sets of Scottish, Irish & Breton music.
Alexis Meunier of Brittany made a clean sweep of the disciplines with three first places to become overall winner.
McCallum Bagpipes was delighted once again to be sponsor of the competition.
Strathclyde Police & Cap Caval Concert Success
Celtic Connections hosted its largest ever audience for the Annual Piping Concert at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Saturday 24 January, 2009.
1,253 people came to Glasgow to enjoy Strathclyde Police Pipe Band and the newly crowned Grade 2 World Champions Bagad Cap Caval performing two hours of fantastic live Scottish and Breton music. Both bands play McCallum Bagpipes pipe chanters and have enjoyed terrific competitive successes respectively.
The concert was the first of two Celtic Connections events heavily featuring McCallum Bagpipes pipe chanters that weekend, the other being the annual Gordon Duncan Memorial Solo Piping Competition, which took place on Sunday 25 January, 2009 in the Central Hotel, Glasgow.
Aberdeen & District Piping Society Practice Chanter Competition Results
Despite 6 inches of snow, the recent Aberdeen & District Piping Society Practice Chanter Competition for youngsters supported by McCallum Bagpipes went very well.
The picture shows Aberdeen & District Piping Society President,
Dr George Greig flanked by the judges John Stewart (L) and Duncan Watson. The youngsters are (left to right) Karla Chalmers, Adam Newlands (winner of the under 9 class), Andrew McInnes (winner of the 12 and under class), Sean Lee Borwick, Alexander Walker and Victoria MacKenzie.
Well done to all the participants – keep up the good work!
George Sheriff Winner Gets His Hands On McCallums
Bobby Durning of Milltown, New Jersey, was the overall winner of the 13th annual George Sherriff Memorial Amateur Invitational Solo Piping Competition which was held in St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church, Hamilton, Ontario on Saturday 15 November, 2008.
Bobby came out top of a field of 12 pipers to take first place and he won a set of AB3 Deluxe bagpipes presented by McCallum Bagpipes.
Ryan Wins Balmoral Classic In Pittsburgh
Fifteen year old Ryan Praskovich of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania won the 2008 Balmoral Classic US Junior Solo Bagpiping Championship, receiving the top prize of a set of McCallum Bagpipes. He also received a trophy and a two-week full scholarship to Balmoral School of Piping and Drumming.
The national competition, which was open to the public for viewing, took place Saturday 15 November, 2008 at Hillman Center for Performing Arts in Fox Chapel, Pennsylvania. It is the only US piping competition for pipers 18 years of age and under. An invitational tournament, entrants are required to meet strict standards based upon amateur upper grade competitive successes.
Congratulations Ryan, we hope your new set of McCallum Bagpipes bring you many more wins in the future.
Hamon Wins With McCallum In Armagh
McCallum Bagpipes employee Sylvain Hamon won the Fort Invitational Competition, held on 15 November, 2008 in Dungannon.
The annual event is scheduled around the same time as the William Kennedy Festival in Armagh, an event which has grown steadily in popularity over the years. Sylvain’s win marks another first place success for the McCallum MC? Solo Chanter.
Well done, Sylvain!
McCallum Pipe Chanters Come Out Tops In London
Ian Spiers of Edinburgh was the latest piper to win a top award using a McCallum Bagpipes Pipe Chanter at the Scottish Pipers’ Society of London competition held in the city on Saturday 1 November, 2008. Ian won the prestigious Bratach Gorm, securing himself an invitation to compete at the Glenfiddich Piping Championship in 2009.
Overall winner was Gordon Walker, fresh off the back of a second Glenfiddich title. Gordon also played the McCallum Bagpipes Pipe Chanter.
Everyone at McCallum Bagpipes is delighted for both Ian and Gordon.
Gordon Walker Dominates Glenfiddich Again
Gordon Walker won a second consecutive Glenfiddich Piping Championships title at Blair Atholl on Saturday 25 October, 2008. Gordon finished ahead of former winner Willie McCallum. Gordon Played the McCallum Bagpipes Pipe Chanter and Willie played the McCallum MC? Solo Chanter. Congratulations to both pipers on their well deserved successes.
McCallum Success At The New Zealand Silver Chanter
Australian piper Ian Lyons won the New Zealand Silver Chanter on Saturday 25 October, 2008 playing a McCallum Bagpipes Pipe Chanter. Ian travelled from his home in Victoria, Australia to compete in the event. The picture above shows Ian being congratulated by Richard Hawke. Congratulations on a fine win, Ian.
Stevie Kilbride At The Sheffield Carling Academy
Drummers Alliance celebrates 21 years of organising major drum events and this year they have a superb line-up arranged for The Beat 2008, which will take place at the Sheffield Carling Academy on Sunday 19 October, 2008 12.30 to 5 pm.
In association with Hardcase, special guests include Eric Ward of Eric Ward Percussion with his team of drummers who between them have a wealth of experience from the Pipe Band World – Cameron Ward (snare drum), Alan McGeachie (bass drum), Stevie Kilbride of McCallum Bagpipes (tenor drum) and Pipe Major Don Bradford.
Between them they have performed across the globe in major pipe band solo competitions with some of the greatest pipe bands ? Shotts & Dykehead Caledonia (UK), ScottishPower (UK), Strathclyde Police (UK) and Bagad Brieg (France).
Other special guest drummers include Pete Ray Biggin (Mark Ronson, Amy Winehouse, Incognito), Pete Riley (session, educator), Concord Street Noize and the final of the Beat 2008 young drummer competition, trade/exhibition stands and much more.
Tickets priced at ?9.50 in advance or ?12 cash on the door.
Flexible Solution For Pipers With The Hump!
When pipers of the of the Sultan of Oman’s military pipe band began losing teeth and suffering injuries due to their Bagpipe mouthpieces during bumpy camel rides, they turned to McCallum Bagpipes for a solution – bendy blowpipes!
McCallum Bagpipes researched the situation and found that the perfect solution was to manufacture a blowpipe capable of adapting to the animals? movement.
Stuart McCallum said: ?I was amazed when our distributor in Oman told us they wanted camel-friendly pipes.
?I designed the device using computer technology. It?s a flexible plastic tube that bends as the camel moves and can be adjusted in length depending on how tall the piper is.
?There?s a padded bit on the tip as well for extra comfort.?
Oman’s armed forces and police have two camel-mounted bands who were delighted to receive their new prototype.
Kenny MacLeod said: ?One of the Royal Guard?s three pipe bands play on camels and the Royal Oman Police also have camel-mounted pipers.
?We stayed in the Royal Guard officers? mess in the capital, Muscat. We didn?t meet the Sultan but we did see the brigadier who oversees all the military music and he liaises directly with his ruler. The Omanis explained some of the pipers had lost teeth while playing so they were delighted with the prototype.”
McCallum Bagpipes is now preparing a massive order for the product.
Manchester Recital By McCallum PipersThe Northwest Of England Piping Society, under Owen Nash and his friends invited the pipers of McCallum Bagpipes to perform on Saturday 5 April, 2008, in Manchester at the Spring Recital. To help the funds of the Society all the participants offered to perform free in front of an audience of some 100 persons who were treated to solo contributions from Allan Hamilton (who then compered the night’s ongoings), Stuart McCallum, Kenny MacLeod and Rory Grossart.
After an interval, Stuart and Rory also played a selection on Small-Pipes (accompanied by Kenny on drums!). Thereafter, Silvain Hamon and then Willie McCallum played solo spots to the delight of the audience. The evening ended with all the players piping as a group which was highly appreciated.
Owen declared the recital as ‘the best yet’ since he began having them in ’92.
Red Hot Pipes For Chilli Pipers
World famous piping group The Red Hot Chilli Pipers have been presented with scorching new custom pipes by McCallum Bagpipes as a reward for their success.
In the last year, the group has performed in more than 150 shows all over the world, won BBC’s When Will I Be Famous? competition and brought out a platinum selling CD ‘Bagrock for the Masses’.
The unique McCallum Bagpipes pipes have a strong red theme, with red mounts and red trim. as well as every set being personally engraved.
Stuart McCallum said “We asked the guys if they would like their own unique pipes as a special reward from us for their services to piping and to celebrate their platinum disc sales. The group is definitely playing a big part in the recent bagpipes uprising across the world. The finished product is a very unusual set of pipes and while traditional pipers may not like them because they look quite bling, it’s what the band were looking for”.
The band have another busy year ahead of them and will debut their new pipes at Ewan McGregor’s star-studded Burns Supper in London.
StrathPol Solos Proves A Hit With Junior Pipers
McCallum Bagpipes was once again pleased to support the second annual Strathclyde Police Pipe Band Junior Solo Piping Competition, which was held in Smithycroft School, Glasgow on 23 February, 2008.
Almost 150 pipers competed in the competitions, which were adjudicated by band members past and present.
Pictured above is the Under 15 overall winner Bradley Parker with Allan Hamilton. Bradley travelled from Northern Ireland to participate and his trip was proved worthwhile with his first place. The full results can be found by clicking here.
McCallum Bagpipes would like to congratulate Strathclyde Police Pipe Band on running another excellent event.
McCallum Double At The Metro Cup
The Metro Cup competition which is held annually in Newark, New Jersey was won by Willie McCallum on 16 February, 2008 playing the new McCallum MC? Solo Chanter.
Willie took first place with the best aggregate place, coming second in the Piobaireachd and first in the Medley.
Congratulations Willie from everyone at the McCallum Bagpipes factory.
Carlisle Wins Second Gordon Duncan Memorial
The second annual Gordon Duncan Memorial Solo Piping Competition sponsored by McCallum Bagpipes took place in Glasgow’s Central Hotel on Saturday 26 January, 2008.
A large attendance saw Andrew Carlisle from Ulster take the overall winner prize in one of the most challenging events of its kind. Players have to perform a set in Scottish, Breton and Irish formats, the overall winner being decided from the best aggregate result.
Willie McCallum won the Scottish leg of the competition playing the McCallum Solo Chanter which continues to impress on the solo stage.
McCallum Bagpipes congratulates all of the participants on making the competition a great success.
MC? Solo Chanter Voted Product Of The Year
The popular piping Web site pipes|drums has voted the new McCallum Solo Chanter as ‘New Product of the Year’ in its New Year honours. Here’s what they had to say:
“The debut in August of the new Willie McCallum-designed pipe chanter was met with excitement, especially after it was revealed that McCallum had already been playing and winning with the new product around the Scottish games, which he of course won handily. Modern techniques and technology have quickly expanded the two-product solo chanter market to at least a half-dozen realistic options for top pipers.”
Click here to view the article in full.
MC? Takes Prizes AT SPA Solos
The new McCallum MC? Solo Chanter featured strongly amongst the prizes at the Scottish Pipers Association solo piping competition on Saturday 15 December, 2007.
Sylvain Hamon (pictured above) won the March, 2nd in the Strathspey & Reel, also 2nd in the former winners March, Strathspey & Reel and won the overall best piper of the day.
Kevin McNulty won 2nd prize in the March and first in the Strathspey & Reel, while James MacPhee won 3rd prize in the former winners March, Strathspey & Reel.
Sylvain, Kevin and James all played the new McCallum MC? Solo Chanter.
McCallum Bagpipes Unveils New Web Site
At McCallum Bagpipes, we always welcome customer interaction as part of our goal to deliver the highest quality products and services. We have been listening to your feedback about our Web site and have launched a new version that is more interactive than ever.
You’ve been asking for easier navigation and more close-up detail of our products. So we’ve teamed up with our Web and print designers Hot Stuff Web Design and DesignFolk to deliver our high quality brochures online in PDF format, which allow you to have full control over the amount of detail you wish to see.
We have also brought things right up-to-date with the introduction of an RSS feed. Now you will be able to receive news from McCallum Bagpipes straight to your RSS browser.
Windows Media Players embedded around the site allow you to see and hear our world class instruments.
Other new additions to the McCallum Bagpipes Web site include our drum supplies and highland dress services.
We hope you enjoy the new site.
Glenfiddich Round Up
Gordon Walker of Cumnock, Ayrshire won his first Glenfiddich Solo Piping Championship at Blair Castle on Saturday 28 October, 2007. Gordon won the event with the highest aggregate result to win one of piping’s highest accolades. Gordon plays the McCallum chanter and MG Reeds drone reeds.
Eight times Glenfiddich winner Willie McCallum won first place in the March, Strathspey & Reel event, playing the new McCallum Solo Chanter.
McCallum Bagpipes would like to congratulate both Gordon and Willie on their achievements at the Glenfiddich.
Piping Live! Quartets Won By St. Laurence O’Toole
A quartet of pipers from St Laurence O’Toole Pipe Band of Dublin won the Piping Live! International Quartet Challenge held in Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Tuesday 7 August, 2007. The group led by Alen Tully beat off stiff competition from 5 other invited bands from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Scotland and the USA.
Prizes for the competition were donated by McCallum Bagpipes and presented by McCallum Bagpipes director Kenny MacLeod.
McCallum Bagpipes Prize For Arizona Piper
Top soloist Robert Watt had the pleasure of presenting a full set of McCallum Bagpipes to a lucky winner at Flagstaff Arizona Highland Celtic Festival, which took place on the weekend of 21 & 22 July, 2007.
The event which was sponsored by McCallum Bagpipes, involved instruction and performances from Robert himself and Captain Bruce Hitchings before a full set of bagpipes was raffled as a star prize.
Before the winner was revealed, the pipes were played by Robert. Click here to view his performance of ‘The Mason’s Apron’.
The lucky recipient of the bagpipes was Keith Williams, a piper of only 2 years who was coincidentally about to purchase the very same set. Keith had this to say about his new instrument:
“I want to extend all the people at McCallum a very special thank you for producing such a beautiful instrument and donating it to the event. I will do my best to make it sound as good as it looks.”
Congratulations on receiving your pipes, Keith. Everyone at McCallum Bagpipes wish you many years of enjoyment and success with your new instrument.
Francois Kervadec Wins McCallum Bagpipes
McCallum Bagpipes director Kenny MacLeod was in Quimper, Brittany in July to represent the company at the annual music festival held in the town.
As part of the line-up of events, a solo piping competition was held, which McCallum Bagpipes was pleased to sponsor. The solo piping competition was won by a young French piper, Francois Kervadec.
Francois won a set of McCallum Bagpipes as his first prize, which was presented to him by Kenny MacLeod. Francois was delighted with the award and played them straight away. Well done Francois.
Strathclyde Police Wins With McCallum
The first major pipe band championship of the 2007 competition season took place in Dumbarton on Saturday 19 May, 2007 and was won by Strathclyde Police Pipe Band under the leadership of Pipe Major Donald Mackay playing McCallum Bagpipes pipe chanters.
This is the band’s fourth championship win since 2003 playing McCallum Bagpipes chanters.
Making it a double for McCallum’s, Johnstone Pipe Band won the Grade 3 championship.
Many congratulations go to both bands on their respective successes from their friends at McCallum Bagpipes.
Police Contestant Nabs A Set Of McCallum Bagpipes
Strathclyde Police Pipe Band held their inaugural Junior Solo Piping Competition in Glasgow on Saturday 24 February, 2007. McCallum Bagpipes director Stuart McCallum who is a member of the band, was delighted to donate the star prize – a full set of McCallum Bagpipes.
The overall winner of the competition was Keith Bowes Jnr of Inchinnan. Keith is pictured above receiving his new bagpipe from Pipe Major Donald Mackay and McCallum Bagpipes representative Allan Hamilton.
Surprise For Wounded Canadian War Veteran
Canadian soldier Corporal Ryan Pagnacco, was seriously injured in a US ‘friendly fire’ incident in Panjwaii, Afghanistan in September, 2006. He received shrapnel wounds to both legs, right arm, right hand and lower back.
Ryan is a keen piper and plays a set of pipes on loan to him from from the Royal Highland Fusiliers of Canada reserve band.
When McCallum Bagpipes heard that family and friends were fundraising for a new set of bagpipes for him, the company offered to donate a full set of McCallum Bagpipes and accessories which was gratefully accepted.
Ryan was presented with his new personally engraved bagpipes by family and friends as a surprise on Tuesday 30 January, 2007. Click here to see Ryan receiving and test driving his new instrument.
McCallum Supports Gordon Duncan Memorial Event
The inaugural Gordon Duncan Memorial Solo Piping Competition was held in Glasgow on Saturday 28 January, 2007. The event was devised in commemoration of the much loved and missed piper Gordon Duncan. Gordon himself played and endorsed McCallum Bagpipes, so the company was proud to lend its support to the event.
A unique feature of the competition was that every piper performed sets in Breton, Irish and Scottish sections.
The overall winner was Sylvain Hamon of Brittany.