AusTex Bagpipes

Great Highland Bagpipes for all occasions
Throughout Austin and Central Texas

Blog

Part the Second: The Music and the Never Ending Fight for Attendance

Posted by cobracp88@gmail.com on August 25, 2015 at 5:00 PM

Competitions for a pipe band generally consist of two events: the March, Strathspey and Reel (MSR) and the Medley. For a Grade 3 band the MSR has to consist of a 4-parted 2/4 march, a 4-parted strathspey and a 4-parted reel. The medley is set of tunes, typically dance tunes with a slow air thrown into the mix, which has to last between three and five minutes from beginning to end.

Simple enough, eh? But what tunes do you play? There are tons of classic pipe tunes to choose from, as well as a lot of newer less known tunes. Here are a few tricks in selecting tunes that I have learned (mostly the hard way) over the past few years:

• Most importantly, choose tunes based on the skill level of your pipe corps. It doesn’t matter how easy you think Balmoral Highlanders is, if some of your pipe corps is struggling with it, you may want to rethink your selection. There are no point bonuses for difficulty.

• Don’t be afraid to strip some of the more difficult embellishments out of the tune. If the corps can’t play that pesky D-doubling in unison, take it out!

• Pay particular attention to picking some tunes that the judges will be familiar with. It is much harder getting the judges’ attention if you are playing a bunch of obscure tunes. My latest theory is to start a medley with a technically simple tune that has a nice musical melody, throw any interesting but obscure tunes in the middle (some that I have written) and finish with a couple of fairly well known tunes.

• Play tunes that everyone in the band likes to play. You’re going to be playing these sets for a while, make sure that they are fun to play! Keep it fun!

• Always have someone who well knows the capabilities of your drummers to write your drum scores! A Grade 3 drum corps playing Grade 1 scores (or even harder) will never bring back high scores from the judges.

• If you’re arranging your 3-5 minute medley and it times out right at 5 minutes, you may want to think about trimming it down. Again, no bonuses for pushing the limit!

• If you’re going to go to Scotland and challenge up in the warmup games the week before the Worlds, make sure very early that your medley is long enough for the higher grade! A 3-1/2 minute medley is good for Grade 3, but the Grade 2 medley has to be between four and six minutes! (There is a story here which I will relate later.)

There is an important phrase nestled in that list: Keep It Fun! And that is a big challenge sometimes when you are dealing with a volunteer organization and members of widely varying skill levels. If you simplify the repertoire too much, the more skilled and experienced players get bored. Do the opposite, and the less skilled and experienced players get frustrated. Bored or frustrated players tend to miss a lot of rehearsals.

This is compounded by the fact that you are dealing with a group of folks who have jobs, families and other hobbies. [I mean come on! Isn’t your life supposed to completely revolve around the pipe band?!?!? I keep offering to talk to players’ bosses and spouses about letting them have more time to practice and spend with the band, but no one has taken me up on it. We have some smart band members!] Sometimes life just gets in the way of pipe band. So I try to “keep it fun” as much as possible…and with varying success.

Here’s my current strategy:

• For competition sets, select tunes of moderate difficulty. Easy enough to allow the up and comers to play, but hard enough to challenge them. And hard enough to keep some interest from the established players.

• Select some fun and more challenging tunes to include in your gig sets.

• You’re going to hammer at your competition sets during most rehearsals, but finish off the evening with some of those more difficult and fun sets.

• Don’t be afraid to add more tunes and swap gig sets around! Keep everyone challenged!

I’ll let you know how it goes…

Next episode: Playing with Pitch

 

Categories: The Run to Scotland 2015, Pipe Bands

Post a Comment

Oops!

Oops, you forgot something.

Oops!

The words you entered did not match the given text. Please try again.

Already a member? Sign In

9130 Comments

Reply Cadewef
4:57 PM on October 6, 2022 
Emprunter 25000 euros
Reply TimothyEneme
5:03 PM on October 6, 2022 
Hello! generic propecia great web page http://propecia.site
Reply PhillipSceva
8:30 PM on October 6, 2022 
Howdy! india pharmacy online very good internet site http://onlinexlpharmacy.com
Reply clomidi hem
9:28 PM on October 6, 2022 
lasix online pharmacy lasix cost lasix pills
Reply PhillipSceva
2:07 AM on October 7, 2022 
Howdy! no prescription online pharmacy beneficial website http://onlinexlpharmacy.com
Reply WbzwItams
6:20 AM on October 7, 2022 
furosemide tablets 20mg is furosemide a beta blocker lasix furosemide buy online
Reply WbzwItams
7:16 AM on October 7, 2022 
furosemide dose in renal failure furosemide 4 mg lasix iv administration
Reply PhillipSceva
7:40 AM on October 7, 2022 
Howdy! cvs pharmacy online application good website http://onlinexlpharmacy.com
Reply sarmanakukuChice
1:07 PM on October 7, 2022 
Cialis (tadalafil) https://comprarcialis5mg.org/ is a prescription medication used to treat erectile dysfunction and benign prostatic hyperplasia. It works by relaxing the muscles and increasing blood flow to certain areas of the body. Cialis 5 mg is the lowest strength tablet available. It is usually taken once a day, with or without food. Common side effects include headache, muscle pain, flushed skin, and nausea.
Bitcoin Up https://sites.google.com/view/bitcoin-up-app/ has been on a tear lately, and it's showing no signs of slowing down. The digital currency has more than doubled in value since the beginning of the year, and it's now worth over $4,000 for each coin. That's a pretty incredible feat in comparison to only a few years back, Bitcoin was worth less than $100 for each coin. What's the reason for Bitcoin's recent success? There are several factors driving the current price hikes for Bitcoin. There's a growing demand from both individual investors and institutional investors.
Cialis 5 mg precio https://comprarcialis5mg.org/cialis-5-mg-precio/ is really a well-known drug for the treatment of erectile dysfunction. It is available in different doses, but the most common will be the 5 mg dose. The cost of Cialis varies depending on the pharmacy, but it is generally around $60 for a 30-day supply.
Cialis works by relaxing the muscles in the penis and increasing blood flow to the region. This causes an erection https://comprarcialis5mg.org/cialis-5-mg-efectos-secundarios/ when sexual stimulation occurs. The drug can be taken with or without food and should be considered about 30 minutes before sex.
Common side effects of Cialis https://comprarcialis5mg.org/comprar-viagra-en-espa%C3%B1a/ include headache, flushing, upset stomach, and muscle aches. These facet effects are usually mild and resolve by themselves. More serious side effects are usually rare but can include fainting, vision changes, and priapism (an extended erection lasting more than 4 hours).
Cialis https://comprarcialis5mg.org/it/ is really a medication used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). It really is in a class of drugs called phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE5) inhibitors. PDE5 inhibitors are used to treat ED by relaxing the arteries in the penis, which allows for increased blood flow during sexual stimulation.
Cialis was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2003. It is available in tablet form and must be taken orally. The recommended starting dose of Cialis https://comprarcialis5mg.org/it/cialis-5mg-prezzo/ for some men is 10 mg, taken as needed always before sexual activity. The maximum recommended dose is 20 mg. Men should not take several dose of Cialis per day.
How does cialis 5 mg precio work?
Cialis 5 mg https://comprarcialis5mg.org/ precio is a prescription medication used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). It works by relaxing the blood vessels in the penis, allowing more blood to enter. This results in an erection.
https://comprarcialis5mg.org/comprar-viagra-contrareembolso/ Cialis 5 mg precio https://comprarcialis5mg.org/ must be taken with a glass of water and can be taken with or without food. It should not be taken more than once per day.
https://comprarcialis5mg.org/it/ If you are taking cialis 5 mg precio for the first time, it is important to know that it may not work right away. For some men, it may take up to 8 attempts before it starts https://comprarcialis5mg.org/it/cialis-10mg/ working. If it does not work after 8 attempts, you should consult your doctor.
Cialis https://comprarcialis5mg.org/it/cialis-20mg/ is a medication accustomed to treat erectile dysfunction together with benign prostatic hyperplasia. It is in a category of medications called phosphodiesterase inhibitors (PDE5 inhibitors) that also includes sildenafil (Viagra) and vardenafil (Levitra). Erectile dysfunction may be the inability to get or even maintain an erection enough for satisfactory sexual performance. Benign prostatic hyperplasia is an enlarged prostate. Cialis 10 magnesium is the most common starting up dose for this ailment.
What https://comprarcialis5mg.org/reduslim/ is Reduslim and how does it work?
Best site https://comprarcialis5mg.org/reduslim-kaufen/ Reduslim kaufen !!!
Reply Griffinen
3:42 AM on October 8, 2022 
Autovermietungen Brand-Erbisdorf
Reply Blashy
4:51 AM on October 8, 2022 
choctaw casino durant hotel sam's town casino shreveport louisiana casino trailer
Reply CharlesBlums
1:56 PM on October 8, 2022 
Hello there! online discount pharmacy very good website http://pharmacyonlinerx.site
Reply CharlesBlums
8:06 PM on October 8, 2022 
Howdy! online pharmacy percocet very good web site http://onlinexrpharmacy.store
Reply Lamisil hem
9:14 PM on October 8, 2022 
lopid medication lopid 300mg canada lopid without prescription
Reply CharlesBlums
1:51 AM on October 9, 2022 
Hello! finasteride online pharmacy very good web page http://onlinexrpharmacy.store
Reply CharlesBlums
7:06 AM on October 9, 2022 
Hi there! online pharmacy mexico excellent web site http://pharmacyonlinerx.site
Reply CharlesBlums
12:24 PM on October 9, 2022 
Hi there! online pharmacy.com great web site http://onlinexrpharmacy.store
Reply EnzoSa
4:23 PM on October 9, 2022 
Kredit uber 2000 Euro
Reply CharlesBlums
5:23 PM on October 9, 2022 
Hello there! legit online pharmacies great site http://onlinexrpharmacy.store
Reply Thorazine hem
3:27 PM on October 10, 2022 
donepezil medication donepezil 10 mg for saledonepezil pharmacy buy donepezil