Monthly Archives: February 2012

MacPherson’s with HHD tenors and a CPc bass

I done be getting tired of typing Henderson Harmonic Deluxe (HHD). So, I thought the Ezee tenors from the previous post were kinda hard to tune together. I probably don’t have them set exactly the same, but, tedious nonetheless. So, back in went the HHD tenors but I wanted to try a less, how shall we say, “ominous?” bass than the Crozier glass so in went the Canning polycarbonate (CPc) tongue bass reed. I think it’s a good sound. The first 3 tunes below were sight read as I haven’t memorized them yet, the remainder are up in my brain somewhere. Chanter tuning was in and out on F and C, my bad. Also found a new piece of software called MP3 Trimmer which is awesome! Trim MP3’s without reencoding them, how sweet is that? If you haven’t yet, you need to buy Gordon Duncan’s Tunes and A Few Tunes – And Mair. These are great music books, the best I’ve bought since Philharmonic, which you should buy too if you haven’t already (which Murray Blair doesn’t seem to sell direct so just pick it up from your local supplier). Also note, I’m going to try and start putting composer’s names in () so if you know one leave a comment please!

Angus MacKenzie of Dumbarton (Wm. McKelvie) and Caber Feidh (jig)

The Flying Scotsman (David Barnes), Brain Fart (my brain), Fleshmarket Close (Michael Grey), The Korgi (John Walsh)

Kate Martin’s Waltz, P.M. Donald MacLeod, Hen’s March

Of course, I’m using a Colin Kyo chanter as usual!

EDIT: The version of Fleshmarket Close I played was from sheet music from my days at Lyon College. Went over to check out Michael Grey’s blog and he recently released the book that contains the tune, which can be found here. Awesome, Michael you’re the bomb!

Okay Okay, MacPherson’s with Ezeedrone reeds already

I got a lot of comments about the last big post and a bunch of people keep telling me Ezeedrone reeds would sound great. So, I put them in and here are a couple of recordings. Before we get to that though, I’d like to note a few things. I think they are very finicky and hard to lock-in. I’ve got both tenors set to shut off when over blown. I’ve spent more time with these than any other commercially available set and it just drives me nuts how long it takes me to tune them. I’m going to have to modify the hemp job on the pipes to make micrometer movements of the drones easier. I’ll also note that I am not the steadiest blower. You’ll notice at the end of each recording I hit low A, squeeze the bag a little, but obviously not up to pressure, because the drones sound out of tune. I think they sound fine during the playing and even at the beginning of the Kalabakan set I sit on low A before starting and it sounds reasonable, but as I let the pressure drop their pitch changes drastically, which is part of them problem I have with tuning them: I can’t blow rock steady, yet. So I’m on the fence, they have a nice sound, but I need something that doesn’t respond to minute pressure variations and tunes quickly. Though, you can really here them ring on the strathspey/reel set. To not bore you to death I picked some tunes I haven’t played in a while, ze chunes:

Kalabakan and Famous Bridge

Orange and Blue, Conway’s Farewell, Kelsey’s Wee Reel