May 27th is Macfie Day, in recognition of that date in 1981, when the reorganized clan was formally recognized as an active clan once again, by The Lord Lyon King of Arms in Edinburgh.
I have celebrated the month by making two new Macfie contacts, both of them piping-related.
First up, Barry Johnson of Oregon. He began playing the bagpipes after attending the big 1993 Clan Macfie reunion gathering on Colonsay with his wife, a Cathey. Clearly, he never looked back and now he leads a small band called The Caledonians. If you live in the Pacific Northwest, check them out at a Highland Games near you. If you’re not close, then check out some of their performances on their MySpace site.
Barry encouraged me to persist in my efforts (mentioned in a previous post) to contact the Clan Macfie piper, Bob McFie. These efforts paid off during May – I finally made contact. Bob is a really interesting guy, and very well connected in the world of piping. He teaches at the College of Piping, in Glasgow and is also active in Europe (especially Germany) helping pipe bands over there. He tells me he has a big collection of Macfie-related music, some of which he wrote himself, and which he has promised to share with me once he get his computer working again! The tune he wrote for the 1993 Gathering is called The Homecoming, and it looks like I’ll be able to try playing it before too long.
Still, The Homecoming will have to take a back seat to The Lament for Captain MacDougall for now. 11 days until the Salt Lake Highland Games!