Monthly Archives: October 2011

Yay! I’ve got a way to sell stuff!

So, here’s the scoop. The trading post on the forums of work really well. The only trick is, sometimes someone will sound genuinely interested in buying something and then you never hear from them again. I try to be nice and tell anyone who inquires after that person that they’re next in line after I hear back from the original person. Well, more often than not you don’t hear back from anyone. So, to get around that, I spent a couple days writing a butt load of php spread across a few scripts and opened a for sale section on my website. Transactions are handled with PayPal and as soon as something is bought, PayPal sends my scripts some data that they then process and remove the item from the for sale page. The only catch is if two people try to purchase an item around the same time. If someone clicks “Buy Now”, the for sale page will state that someone has clicked on the Buy Now button and how long ago they clicked on it, but that the transaction hasn’t finished yet. The notification disappears after 20 minutes as I’ve assumed the person changed their mind. The notification states that it’s probably safe to proceed with the purchase after a delay of 5 minutes as they’ve probably changed their mind, but to refresh the store page right before finalizing the purchase to make sure that item still shows up on the store page and hasn’t been bought while you were filling out the PayPal “paperwork”. Check it out!

Husk 3.0 chanter reed & SOS, Gael, and Kyo chanters

Believe it or not, Shawn Husk has steadily improved his reeds over the last month or so. I’ve had the chance to play 3 versions, which I’ve named 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0. The reason for major release numbers is that each reed was different. 2.0 was a little longer than 1.0 and 3.0 has a little ridge on it. Anyways, his 2.0 matched the best reeds I’ve ever gotten to play. His 3.0 is a real cracker though! Popped it in the SOS chanter in the Gellaitry pipes in the bedroom and away we go:

Newmarket House and Hen’s March

Next, I wanted to test the Husk 3.0’s pitch, so it went in the Gael. After a suitable warm-up, I had it a 466 Hz. That’s with the reed pushed in a little and the high A taped to sharpen some middle notes up to the low A. I also realized the chanter timbre I was hearing on the “Pipers’ Controversy” album was in fact just a bunch of chanters with flatter pitches. I had to add hemp to my tenor reeds and the tenor tops were still almost falling off! The rest of the recordings were done in the walk-in closet as the kiddos had gone to sleep. The remaining also played on the 1950’s Henderson’s.

Newmarket House and Paddy’s Leather Breeches

Scotland The Brave and Wings

Well, you’re probably tired of hearing Newmarket House but I’ve got a competition coming up and I still need to get the parts straight. So here I’ve moved on to the Kyo with my band reed (Gilmour with a corner missing) followed by the Husk 3.0. We’re tuning around 485 Hz as a band, with the Husk 3.0 it came down a bit to 482-3 Hz or so (I have to guess because the analog tuner only goes to 480 Hz, so I have to roughly convert cents to hertz).

Newmarket House and Glasgow Police Pipers with Gilmour reed

Newmarket House and Alan MacPherson Of Mosspark with Husk 3.0 reed

New Hornpipe and thoughts on drone reeds

I’m not happy with how Ina MacKenzie is resting in my brain, so I might just play this new hornpipe I picked up the other day, Newmarket House. Very fun and fairly easy. Gellaitry pipes, Crozier Carbon tenors, Kinnaird bass, Husk chanter reed, and a SOS chanter that is out of tune because I didn’t bother to move any tape.

Newmarket House and Alan MacPherson of Mosspark

I’ve never thought plastic tongued tenor reeds did very well in reproducing the sound of cane. They sound nasal to me and don’t have the ‘sparkle’ of more exotic tongued tenor reeds in matching the sound of cane. Case in point:

Soren Larsen’s set of Henderson’s with cane bass, Ezee tenors first then cane tenors

Soren noted that the cane reeds were manufactured by Ronan Latry. Not that the overall sound with the Ezee’s is bad, just noticeably lacking in my opinion.

In that, I’ve had indications from many people that the Gellaitry’s are a bit bass dominant, so in thinking the Crozier Carbon had rather loud tenors, I switched them out for my Kinnaird tenors, leaving the Kinnaird bass. Oh well, I’m sticking with the Kinnaird tenors for now. I love it!

Gellaitry’s with Kinnaird bass and Crozier Carbon tenors first then Kinnaird tenors

Carved up Naill, Husk reed, and the first tunes I ever learned: 3 Jigs

First some 4/4’s:

Flett from Flotta, Lord Lovat’s Lament, Wings, and Caber Feidh

Then, the first tunes I ever learned:

Paddy’s Leather Breeches, Kesh Jig, Glasgow Police Pipers (4 parted)

Some tunes from a very old medley played by the Texas Highland Pipes and Drums:

Itchy Fingers and Sailor’s Hornpipe

and a few Irish tunes for good measure (the first 2 in the wrong key, the last 2 messed up because it has been forever):

Connaughtman’s Rambles, Congress Reel, Dick Gossip’s, High Reel, and Dinky Dorian’s

This was by far the hardest reed of the reeds I have from Shawn so the fingering and tune recollection were secondary to keeping the chanter going, so sorry! Gellaitry’s with Crozier Glass again.

Spirit of Scotland chanter, Husk reed, Crozier Glass, and Competition Tunes

I acquired a Spirit of Scotland style blackwood McCallum chanter from a donation to the “On the Day” box set fundraising campaign. It is a very nice chanter. I wonder what model it is? I’m inclined to think it is, or very similar to, the regular McCallum chanter, MK2 with slightly oval holes (what is apparently shipped with most of their pipes, only in delrin). I’ve got high G down to D taped, and C could have used just a teeny bit too, so it’s certainly amenable to taping in a band situation. It has a Husk reed in it and I’ve got the Crozier glass tongued reeds in my Gellaitry’s. I’ve got the only competition I go to coming up in mid-November so I’m practicing for that. Instead of ‘mastering’ in Audacity (which as of late has me wondering if it’s exporting at the same quality that was recorded), this post I’m trying AudioSlicer which just cuts your mp3 into pieces based on silence and hopefully preserves the original quality). Peace!

HJ: Ina MacKenzie and Herring Wife

6/8’s: Farewell to the Creeks and Sweet Maid of Mull

MSR: Cowal Gathering, Susan MacLeod, and Miss Proud

Pipe Dream Medley: Mason’s Apron, Inspector Donald Campbell (Ness), Unst Bridal March, Iron Man, Mrs. MacLeod of Raasay, and Scots Air Hornpipe

Actual Medley: Green Hills of Tyrol, When the Battle’s Over, Scotland the Brave, and Wings

Friend’s MSR: Arthur Bignold of Lochrosque, Highland Harry, and Bessie McIntyre