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Fri Aug 16, 2013, 10:28 PM


New Musical Toy

Got this last weekend and I am having a blast. My main two instruments are the bagpipes (both Great Highland and small pipes) and the guitar. This thing is awesome. Loop your drum track, add a bass track, then sample yourself on the guitar for some rhythm chords. Run it through your amp and then jam away.

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Reply New Musical Toy (Original post)
Bunnahabhain Aug 2013 OP
OriginalGeek Aug 2013 #1
Bunnahabhain Aug 2013 #2
OriginalGeek Aug 2013 #3

Response to Bunnahabhain (Original post)

Fri Aug 16, 2013, 10:42 PM

1. Other than having a family who is stuck with me

any advice for a guy who would love to learn to play the bagpipes?

I should probably add I have no musical training and am often asked to leave karaoke bars. I've heard it takes no small amount of lung capacity and, towards that end, I quit smoking.

I might also add that Laphroaig is my favorite whiskey but maybe that's because I've never had Bunnahabhain.

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Response to OriginalGeek (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 16, 2013, 10:56 PM

2. Practice Chanter


You want to pick up a practice chanter and stick with that for six months to a year first. Let me give you a link to a perfectly fine chanter:


The chanter is the part of the bagpipe where you do all the finger work. This little guy lets you blow it like a recorder or clarinet and learn piping fingering. Next, you need an instructor. Plain and simple, this little nine note instrument is one of the hardest to play. You need an instructor. He/she is going to teach you the scale and then start you with basic embellishments. This is going to drive you crazy and you will want to start playing tunes.

Listen to your instructor!

Learn your doublings, triplings, burls, taorluaths, tachums, etc. These are what piping is about. There is no way to have silence between notes, as the air supply is constantly flowing over the reads, so it is these embellishments we use for phrasing.

A stand (that's what a set or pipes are technically named) of pipes are not cheap. You can get into respectable ones for 1-2k, some used for maybe a little less. I had a stand made by Naill for me, what's called "half mounted" in engraved silver. It's not all silver finished as I liked the imitation ivory mounts for counterpoint, but the ring caps, ferrules, and tuning slides are all engraved silver (Celtic Dragon pattern). These pipes will survive me and I paid 4k for them 12 years ago, replacements would be about 7k now.

Hope this helps! Slainte Mhath!

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Response to Bunnahabhain (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 16, 2013, 11:39 PM

3. Yes!

thank you! I've seen those chanters at the highland games...I shoulda bought one when I saw it then and I'd already be more than a year into practicing...

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