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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2002 11:53 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2001 6:00 pm
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Location: LaPorte City, Iowa
Can anyone speak with authority on the subject of the historical role of piping in the military. Specifically, have pipes ever been associated with, or used in some way, in cavalry units? Also, are the GHP the only pipes traditionally played in the military?

Aside from all that, are all bellows operated pipes used only while sitting? What kinds of pipes can be used while standing?

I don't know if I'm asking the right questions, but I am a member of the U.S. military and have been asked by my superiors to get information about the use of bag-pipes in our cavalry unit (we no longer ride horses, by the way, we fly... in helicopters). They heard that I play whistle and wondered if I would be willing to learn the pipes.

Well, I've become long-winded. If anyone can help, I would be much obliged.

Shane


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2002 12:06 pm 
There's a tune called 'The piper on horseback'. When we playe it last week Jacky Daly leaned over and asked me why the piper was on horseback. He provided the answer himself: 'It's harder ot hit a moving target'.

If you have any idea of the set up of the Uilleann pipes you'd have guessed playing them on horseback is not really a practical option.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2002 12:28 pm 
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Location: LaPorte City, Iowa
That it is, that it is:)

I'm familiar with the UP and I'm assuming there is no way to play them standing... or riding horse-back... or in a helicopter. Are there other kinds operated with bellows or are in other ways similar to UPs? I ask because: 1)I've heard the reeds used with UPs require less maintenance, or at least last longer, 2) there seems a huge advantage in subtlety and expression with the UPs, 3) ...those GHP, alright outside, but in the evenings when we are sharing a round or two, I'd be lynched. Of course, I could just stick to the whistle indoors.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Shane Klein on 2002-02-01 13:33 ]</font>


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2002 6:23 pm 
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Well, I know this is the UP forum, but there are some other forms of pipe that may work for you.

Scottish smallpipes or Northumbrian pipes will both play with bellows. Lots of smallpipe makers are now making them mouthblown for simplicity as a second instrument so GHB players don't have to learn to move the right elbow. I would not actually want to play a bellows-blown pipe while standing.

For quiet versions of the Highland pipes, look into Shuttle pipes, parlor pipes, and fireside pipes. Do not buy the pakistani kind. Waste of time and money. The one exception I know is Soundstream Music. The guy who sells them polishes the bores and replaces the reeds with something that works. I have a set of his medieval smallpipes and also a set of Walsh Shuttle Pipes. I recommend either for an indoor instrument. About the volume of a fiddle.

I don't mean to hijack any of this thread, but thought it might help.

-Patrick


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2002 2:44 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 14, 2001 6:00 pm
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Location: LaPorte City, Iowa
Thanks for the relpies.

Two more questions...
In what way is it more difficult to play say, the scottish smallpipes, while standing and using a bellows than it is while standing and blowing?
How does the chanter differ in a set like the scottish smallpipes from the UP (e.g. what about that leather strap thingy that is used to stop the end of the UP chanter).

By the way, as was mentioned above, this IS a UP forum, not a bagpipe forum. So, in the interest of propriety, someone cut the thread, so to speak, if this one is straying too far a-field.

Shane


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2002 7:55 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2001 6:00 pm
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Location: Surlyville
Shane, follow this link to get an idea of how many types of bag pipes there are.
http://www.larkinam.com/MenComNet/Busin ... t/Bagpipes
and a list of pipemakers that also has information to other types of non-UP pipes.
http://www.pipersgathering.org/Instrume ... Makers.htm
http://www.pipersgathering.org/index/index.htm


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2002 9:16 am 
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ok here you go, everything you ever wanted to know about every kind of bagpipe around.

http://www.hotpipes.com/main.html

Jeff


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2002 9:23 am 
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Location: Seattle WA
I'll offer this up as the ultimate bagpipe page: http://www.bobdunsire.com/bagpipeweb/


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2002 2:56 pm 
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Shane-

Check those links! They really are good ones. I use Bob Dunsire as my main piping page.

The smallpipes could probably be played standing, but that's like saying the GHB can be played sitting. Can be done, but it really isn't the way the instrument is designed to be used.

The chanter on most bagpipes will only give you one octave and maybe a note or two above that. The GHB plays 9 notes. The UP gives you like way more notes and really confuses us GHB-only guys. But the links from Bob Dunsire's page ought to give you info on the differences.

Anyway, now I've gone and really diverted the thread. Sorry. Anyone want to bring your UPs to Fairbanks, I'll buy you a pint to make it up to you.

-Patrick


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2002 3:30 am 
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Location: LaPorte City, Iowa
Thanks, everybody, for the info and links.
It appears that I've a lot of reading to do. I'll let you know if I ever succeed in playing the Garryowen on Uilleann pipes, on horse-back.
God bless,
Shane


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