Piobaireachd workout!

Last night Justin Howland, my band’s resident instructor hosted the first in a series of Piobaireachd Workshops.

Five others were in attendance, and certainly from my perspective it was a great evening. Justin used a kind of back-to-front approach to the tune he had selected – Too Long in This Condition. Thus, we learned the two doubling variations, so that the theme notes would be prominent. The other effect of learning the parts of the tune in this order is that you take care of the most technical aspects of the tune first. Since these are the features that require the most practice, the theory is that you will finish learning the tune with all the technical pieces in place!

In the case of this tune, the technical features consist of the edre and dare (or E- and F-throws) and the crunluath fosgailte, which contains the edre. My edres are not that great, so it was good to give them a public workout. In addition, I’d never attempted to play the crunluath fosgailte, so overall it was a challenging workshop. Despite this, Justin is a very patient teacher, and evidently good at teaching a group with mixed abilities, so I didn’t feel at all awkward.

I’m looking forward to the next meeting in two weeks time.

One Reply to “Piobaireachd workout!”

  1. Congrats on your p-b studies! I can tell you’ll master it well. However, I have to hope that you’ll come and listen to Roddy Macleod play p-b one day…perhaps in Pebble Beach at the piping school. To hear him play is SHEER HEAVEN! And, in my blog, the silhouette photo is Roddy Teaching P-B to us. Fun! Anyhow, the best wishes in your studies..enjoy the ride! Persistence pays!

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