Pipe tune compositions of Pipe Major James Robertson and oth...
Date January 1952
Track ID 9955
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Pipe tune compositions of Pipe Major James Robertson and other modern pipe tunes.

All the time the contributor was in Turkey on military service he was composing. He composed tunes with titles reminiscent of Turkey, where he used to see people chatting under the palm trees beside the water jars. He remembered G. S. MacLennan asking him whether he knew any pipe tunes that finished on a high A. There were very few, so he composed one, 'The Harvesters' Song', and diddles it for the interviewer. He composed 'Farewell to the Creeks' in Germany about 1915, and wrote it on a piece of yellow blotting paper. The title refers to the creeks at Portknockie where he spent a holiday at his uncle's house. The interviewer comments that he first heard this tune, which he finds very characteristic of the north east, played by the pipes of the 153 Brigade at Linguaglossa in Sicily. The contributor attributes the popularity of the tune to the fact that Pipe Major Reid put it in his book and that it is not too difficult.

The interviewer comments that there are not many truly original modern pipe tunes, such as 'Farewell to the Creeks'. The contributor attributes this to the limitations imposed by the 6/8 rhythm and the capabilities of the chanter. There are however some original modern tunes, such as one dedicated by G. S. MacLennan to his uncle John MacLennan, which the contributor diddles. He comments that when G. S. MacLennan heard one of his compositions he said it was more clever than musical.