Teach Yourself Bagpipes by Lindsay Davidson - Intermediate Finger Exercises and RSPBA MAP Tunesbringing quality 'piping instruction to you for free
The Keel Row
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 particual trickiness in each tune.
Videos to play along with
For more information on how to use these midi files please follow the link on the left.
Five discussion points
1 A very popular tune - there are as many versions in the world as there are 'pipers.
2 All of the gracenotes here have been made heavy, in the triplet style discussed elsewhere in strathspeys.
3 The throws are all of a medium weight - a longer low G (the same length as the gracenotes) followed by the D opening on the beat and being the same length as the C.
4 Taorluath bar 4 - this fits into a quarter of the whole beat. Make sure the D and E gracenotes are suitably proportioned and the low Gs are longer. It is usuallyproportion not speed that makes people feel unhappy in taorluaths.
5 Strikes on E bar 5/7 - these are lighter and shorter, 32nd notes, opening on the beat.
Five exercises (please keep coming back until this is fully updated)