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 Post subject: Kevin Thompson pipes
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 1:14 pm 
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I've a practice set made by Kevin Thompson. I bought it years back from a friend who tried and failed to learn. I've been playing the practice set for almost 10 years and still have not gotten bored. I've never met the maker of the pipes and don't know anyone else who plays his pipes, so if you own or have played a set of Thompson pipes, I'd like to know your opinion of the pipes or the pipe-maker.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 1:39 pm 
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Location: Darwen Lancashire
Declan Masterson has a KT chanter, Leo Rickard also has a KT flat set.
What I have heard of his stuff has been good.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:04 pm 
I have met Kevin, he did the reedmaking at the tionol in Westport in (I think 1994), must have some photographs somewhere. he's from Malahide.
Leo Rickard had a D set ( possibly just the chanter) made by him. The chanter was extremely powerful. I have met other people playing his stuff too but who they were I can't remember at this stage.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:21 pm 
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Leo plays a Leo Rowsome chanter and a Kevin Thompson body. He also has a B set by Kevin.

Up the Banner!

Patrick.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 3:06 pm 
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I have a Thompson drones and regulators. They're super. Kevin's a great maker. Mind you his early stuff can be hit and miss, anything from late 1970's is bang on!
Neillidh Mulligan playes a Kevin Thompson chanter with his Brogan set.
There's pictures of a Thompson set in construction on www.uilleann.nl
Tommy

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 1:37 pm 
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Here you go, pictures of (finally) a full set, and a sound clip:


http://www.uilleann.nl/pipes/pictureGal ... index.html


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 2:06 pm 
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It must be hard for a left-handed person (judging by the photos)to make and play the majority of the time right handed pipes


RORY


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 2:33 pm 
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I am not an active contributor to this forum despite viewing it's contents from time to time. The first and last post I made, in fact, was concerning an article in the WSJ that mentioned the late great Al Purcell, a friend of mine.

An inquiry regarding Kevin Thompson has prompted me to contribute once again. Kevin is a wonderful gentleman and an excellent pipe maker and restorer. He made a practice set for me in 1996 which to this day continues to be excellent in tone and structure. He also made the original reed for it (which I destroyed due to inexperience at the time) designed, he claimed, for the hot Midwest climate where I was about to move. He made this particular reed from cane he grew himself in his backyard in Malihide, Co. Dublin. It was a big fat reed but it played exceptionally well. It was mild enough to play on my own yet loud enough not to get lost in a crowded session. I miss that reed despite having an excellent replacement.

To connect some of the reply posts, the day I picked up the set Leo Rickard was in Kevin's workshop. It was the first time I met Leo. He raved about Kevin and Kevin's work. Leo had his full set with him. He had a Thompson chanter with him on that day and not the Leo Rowsome chanter. The whole set was just beautiful in sound; humming away and in perfect balance. Asthetic wise the set was also beautiful displaying conservative detailed craftsmanship. The tone, however, is what really stood out. These same qualities are found in my practice set as well. I have received many compliments from several "named" players who have given it a go. To me that describes Kevin as a pipemaker that does quality work across the board be it a full or practice set.

Interestingly, before Kevin agreed to make me a set he had me visit him three times. I lived in Malahide so this was not a hassle Each time he asked me more and more questions such as why I wanted to play the pipes, what players did I like to listen to, what style of piping did I lean towards, how long would I be willing to commit to learning the pipes etc. He finally agreed to make me a practice set and he said it would be of a quality that would, as he put it, "stand by me for years and years." Needless to say, his word was his bond. I would never part with this chanter.

Kevin Thompson may not be on the perceived "A" list of pipemakers but he turns out, regularly, "A" list work. Like many excellent pipers he is the sort that prefers to stay under the radar. I highly, highly recommend him and his work.

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Ged a chual' iad an ceol, cha do thuig iad am port.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 3:45 pm 
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Hey Edmund! Good to see ya chime in. Hope things are well with all of you in Italy.

I've played two of Kevin thompson's chanters...Neillidh Mulligan's and the one owned by Neillidh's older son. They are quite nice instruments. Neillidh likes hard reeds....harder than I am accustomed to playing. I put one of my Koehler reeds in one of the two and it played spot on in tune with drones and had a lovely tone at a comfortable playing pressure. I took that as a sign of excellent attention to the copy of a Rowsome bore, tone holes, etc and to be reflective of a well constructed chanter.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 4:16 pm 
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I would say,,, WOW!
That, in my opinion is extremely beautiful looking pipes...WOW...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 2:48 am 
Patrick D'Arcy wrote:
Leo plays a Leo Rowsome chanter and a Kevin Thompson body. He also has a B set by Kevin.

Up the Banner!

Patrick.


I was thinking back a long time I suppose, he used to play one of these. I remember one time during the 80's I was in the central Hotel with Rochford having a few tunes. leo came in and had the pipes out, the chanter Thompson was extremely powerful, blew you out of your seat. At the time Leo was playing with a band and had a mike fixed to the chanter. martin R. asked what that izmo was. Le oexplained it was a microphone. I told Rochford 'to make it louder'. He was in stitches.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2005 3:44 am 
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
elbogo wrote:
Here you go, pictures of (finally) a full set, and a sound clip:


http://www.uilleann.nl/pipes/pictureGal ... index.html


I played that set once - its Paul Eliasbergs (Paul, where are you?). It is one of the easiest chanters I've ever played - allmost did all the work by itself :D And it sounded beautiful as well!

/Morten


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