'OT: Bagpipes'

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OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 04 Jan 02:27PM
     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 04 Jan 05:16PM
         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Bob Zawalich, 04 Jan 06:00PM
             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 05 Jan 07:32AM
                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 05 Jan 10:00AM
                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 05 Jan 11:18AM
                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 05 Jan 11:29AM
                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - James, 05 Jan 03:25PM
                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Bob Zawalich, 05 Jan 10:19PM
                                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 06 Jan 02:01AM
                                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 06 Jan 09:16AM
                                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 06 Jan 11:39AM
                                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 06 Jan 02:35PM
                                                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - James, 06 Jan 04:06PM
                                                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Tony Wakefield, 06 Jan 11:00PM
                                                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 07 Jan 12:36AM
                                                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 07 Jan 09:45AM
                                                                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 07 Jan 09:47AM
                                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 08 Jan 02:26AM
                                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 08 Jan 07:38AM
                                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Neil Macintyre, 10 Jan 10:04PM

OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 04 Jan 02:27PM (edited 04 Jan 02:36PM)
Hi there,

Australia Day is almost upon us, when Australians celebrate their national identity by basking in the sunshine, wearing little-to-nothing, drinking plenty and singing Australian songs that they feel best sum up the nation's achievements and aspirations.

So for the grand finale concert, it falls upon me to write "The Finale Medley" including AC/DC's "Long Way To The Top". As a special bonus, the producers have organised for pipers to play the bagpipe solo, which I humbly attach.

I've been reading a few articles on writing for bagpipe transposition and I'll be honest. The more I read, the more confused I become. Can anyone help me please?

The pipers have requested parts in A and Bb. (Usually whenever I have an instrument query, I have plenty of numbers in my book but alas, no pipers). And here in Sibelius-land, we can smugly talk of transpositions and edit instruments, knowing that very few people will know of what we speak.

So, can anyone help?

Please be nice. Remember that the most contact Australians have had with Scotland is when they saw Mel Gibson in Braveheart. We're sorry.

Thanks in advance,
Dave

--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com
Attachment Long Way To The Top Bagpipe Solo.sib (38K)

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Adrian Drover - 04 Jan 05:16PM (edited 04 Jan 05:18PM)
Living in Scotland and occasionally having to write for this instrument from hell combined with orchestra, I can verify that it is most confusing. Its scale is basically Eb (with a couple of quarter tones thrown in) but written in D, often w'out any flats or sharps in either the key or accidentals. I'm guessing that your melody would be transposed up a semitone into Bb. I would keep the Bb key sig to be safe. From what I understand, it makes no difference to the player either way. Happy Australia day. Don't forget the ear plugs.

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Bob Zawalich - 04 Jan 06:00PM (edited 05 Jan 10:18PM)
There is a set of plugins I wrote for bagpipes back in 2011 or so called Bagpipes Suite, category Composing Tools. As part of the zip file there is a PDF file describing both how to use the plugins and more relevantly,how to notate bagpipes, including pipes in ensembles.

It may be overkill and it may be irrelevant, but it might be worth having a look at. I am not a piper but I was working with some at the time.

--
Bob

An experienced user of Sibelius. Sib 1.2 - 8, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit, 32 G RAM. Year 2017.
For plugin lookup and categories see http://www.nycmusicservices.com/musicresources
For manual plugin installation see http://www.sibelius.com/download/plugins/index.html?help=install

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 05 Jan 07:32AM (edited 05 Jan 07:58AM)
Great thank you Adrian and Bob. I have just walked in the door and will look at this again tonight, armed with your expertise. I'll let you know how I fare. I also asked another arranger in Sydney who came back with the advice "Whatever you do, they'll complain about everything."

Cheers,
Dave

--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Adrian Drover - 05 Jan 10:00AM
The attached is a scan from Forsyth Orchestration (strangely of Scottish parentage). It will probably throw you into more confusion than you already suffer. The range and drones shown are as written for the instrument, but actually sound a semitone higher. Tunes attempted to replicate modern scale temperament are normally played in keys close to Eb or Bb sounding, but written as "white" notes one step lower. Tunes written on a pentatonic scale are the most successful when the pipes are combined with orchestra or band (e.g. Auld Lang Syne, Skye Boat Song) thus avoiding quartertone tuning.
Attachment bagpipe.JPG.jpg (283K)

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 05 Jan 11:18AM

Thanks Adrian. What a fabulously written chapter.

Cheers,
Dave

--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 05 Jan 11:29AM (edited 06 Jan 06:18AM)

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by James - 05 Jan 03:25PM (edited 05 Jan 03:33PM)
I like the sound when the bag under their arm runs out of air and it sounds like a cow dying.

I would notate this using the fall on keypad 4. Plus I'm sure they would appreciate the annotation: "Die, cow, die!" ;^)



--
Mac OS 10.12 Sierra
Sibelius 6.2

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Bob Zawalich - 05 Jan 10:19PM
Sorry - I have corrected the post that gave the wrong location.

--
Bob

An experienced user of Sibelius. Sib 1.2 - 8, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit, 32 G RAM. Year 2017.
For plugin lookup and categories see http://www.nycmusicservices.com/musicresources
For manual plugin installation see http://www.sibelius.com/download/plugins/index.html?help=install

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 06 Jan 02:01AM (edited 06 Jan 06:18AM)
No worries Bob. Your accompanying bagpipe documentation is nothing short of stunning. I'm still working my way through the first page.

I have attached the 8 bar bagpipe solo from "Long Way To The Top". Of course, to confuse matters, the original recording is in Bb concert, while we'll be playing in A concert.

With respect, may I ask both you and/or Adrian if this passes muster, or will there be chanters at 50 paces?

mòran taing

Dave

--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com
Attachment Long Way To The Top Bagpipe Solo CHECK.sib (38K)

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Adrian Drover - 06 Jan 09:16AM (edited 06 Jan 10:32AM)
Take a listen to these:

Scotland the Brave https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSH0eRKq1lE in Bb

Amazing Grace https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8AeV8Jbx6M in Eb

Auld Lang Syne https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=to1xT93IlUI in Bb

Mull of Kintyre https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5626WzsfMw in D

The first three are either in Eb or Bb. Notice the flat sounding leading note in Scotland the Brave.

In the fourth one the pipes are in D. This has obviously been electronically shifted down half a tone to suit Paul McCartney's accompaniment.

I have found no reliable guide to writing for pipes and orchestra that I can recommend. All I can offer is that the written chanter range is from G4 to A5, all on natural ("white") notes, and sounds closest to the modern Eb major scale, range Ab4 to Bb5 with dominant (Bb) drones. See attached.







Attachment bagpipe range.JPG.jpg (45K)

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 06 Jan 11:39AM
Adrian - you're a champion. Much appreciated thank you. I think your attached bagpipe range answers my main question which is "Can the bagpipes play the solo down a semitone from the original?" and I fear the answer is "nay ye cannae do that laddie". The notes required for the solo in concert A (instead of the original concert Bb) do not seem to exist.

The YouTube links you sent really provide the clearest answer. Always trust your ears and my ears say that the bagpipes attempting to play in the key of concert A instead of concert Bb is going to sound even more terrible than usual.

Cheers,
Dave

--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Adrian Drover - 06 Jan 02:35PM
There is one solution, Dave. Put the pipers on a fast moving open top train and record while they are moving away from you.

Q. Why do pipers always play on the march.
A. To try and get away from the terrifying noise.

G'day, Ade.

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by James - 06 Jan 04:06PM
I think it is important for bagpipe players to remember that all the jokes cannot be about the contrabassoon.


--
Mac OS 10.12 Sierra
Sibelius 6.2

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Tony Wakefield - 06 Jan 11:00PM
"Put y' hand up ma kilt".

"Ooh Jock, it`s gruesome".

"Put y` hand up again it`s gruesomemore . . . . . . !


--
Sibelius 6/7/8. Win7. Note Performer, with various other no longer in use programs & audio.
Web:http://www.scoreexchange.com/profiles/tonywakefield

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 07 Jan 12:36AM (edited 07 Jan 12:37AM)
I fear this thread is running away. And I thought it was only viola players and trombonists who copped the flak.


--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Adrian Drover - 07 Jan 09:45AM
Don't mess with trombonists!!! ;-)

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 07 Jan 09:47AM

Oh - it's like shooting fish in a barrel.


--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Dave P-B - 08 Jan 02:26AM (edited 08 Jan 02:27AM)
Re Adrian's bagpipes guide:
Acknowledgement for Adrian from my fellow Australian cohort.

"Perfection. I think I’m going to insert this as a graphic and stick it on all bagpipe charts I do in future. :-). I’m not even kidding."

--
Sib 8.5.1
MacPro, 16GB RAM, OS 10.11.6
http://www.davepb.com

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Adrian Drover - 08 Jan 07:38AM
Then I just hope that my info is near enough accurate. We have an establishment here in Glasgow called the Piping Centre. For many years I thought it was a firm of plumbers.

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Re: OT: Bagpipes
Posted by Neil Macintyre - 10 Jan 10:04PM (edited 10 Jan 10:50PM)
This, I suppose:

https://www.thepipingcentre.co.uk/

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Messages in this thread

OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 04 Jan 02:27PM
     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 04 Jan 05:16PM
         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Bob Zawalich, 04 Jan 06:00PM
             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 05 Jan 07:32AM
                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 05 Jan 10:00AM
                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 05 Jan 11:18AM
                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 05 Jan 11:29AM
                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - James, 05 Jan 03:25PM
                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Bob Zawalich, 05 Jan 10:19PM
                                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 06 Jan 02:01AM
                                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 06 Jan 09:16AM
                                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 06 Jan 11:39AM
                                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 06 Jan 02:35PM
                                                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - James, 06 Jan 04:06PM
                                                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Tony Wakefield, 06 Jan 11:00PM
                                                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 07 Jan 12:36AM
                                                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 07 Jan 09:45AM
                                                                 Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 07 Jan 09:47AM
                                     Re: OT: Bagpipes - Dave P-B, 08 Jan 02:26AM
                                         Re: OT: Bagpipes - Adrian Drover, 08 Jan 07:38AM
                                             Re: OT: Bagpipes - Neil Macintyre, 10 Jan 10:04PM