Teach Yourself Bagpipes by Lindsay Davidson - Intermediate Finger Exercises and RSPBA MAP Tunes

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Willie Murray

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Five discussion points

1   Throws -  these throws are of a medium heavy type - the low G, D and C are all the same length as each other, with the beat landing on the fist D. Listen carefully to the slow midi files to understand this.
2    Strike bar 1 - the strike comes up on the beat here and everywhere else. To make this work the D is shortened by a semiquaver ad this time is given to the first B, which is then divided into 4 equal parts and the  low G of the strike takes the last quarter of the this B.
3   Bar 4 (and later) taorluath - the taorluath takes up a quarter of the C and the next beat is made by closing the E gracenote.
4   Strike bar 10 - this has the same approach as the strikes on B similarly notated above.Some may wish to replace the low G with a C as this will have a lighter musical effect.
5   Doublings F and high A - these have the same rhythm as each other, where the note being doubled (F and High A) is three quarters of the pace given to the doubling and the 'chopping' gracenoteis only a quarter. This gives a light effect.

This section of the website has tunes taken from the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Asociation (RSPBA) prescribed tune list.

If you learn these tunes, there will be a large number of people you can be sure to find tunes in common with.

The RSPBA update their list from time to time and the versions here followed their original published versions, pending updates in due course.
These videos show the music and you can hear midi generated tracks where the rhythm of the gracenotes and embellishments is maintained in proper interprative proportion. You should try to feel the rhythm and also count it out exactly. Start with the fastest files and as you get better, go to the slower files, as this is a true measure of your security of technique.

Each file is given at two pitches, A and B flat. This reflects the different practice chanter tunings commonly found. Please scroll down to what you need (site updated for smart phone and tablets)

The exercises below are chosen to help with some particular trickiness in each tune.


Videos to play along with


Low Pitch normal speed

Low Pitch half speed

Low Pitch quarter speed

High pitch normal speed

High pitch half speed

High pitch quarter speed


For more information on how to use these midi files please follow the link on the left.


Five exercises
 

Exercise 1

mapex16

Low Pitch High Pitch
Full speed Full speed
Half speed Half speed
Quarter speed Quarter speed

Exercise 2

mapex19graphic

Low Pitch High Pitch
Full speed Full speed
Half speed Half speed
Quarter speed Quarter speed

Exercise 3

ex46

Low Pitch High Pitch
Full speed Full speed
Half speed Half speed
Quarter speed Quarter speed

Exercise 5

ex47

Low Pitch High Pitch
Full speed Full speed
Half speed Half speed
Quarter speed Quarter speed

About this project
Lindsay Davidson
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