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!

6 thoughts on “MacPherson’s with HHD tenors and a CPc bass

  1. Pitch control? What do you mean? The low A is sharp on the MacPherson chanter and I hate taping low A unless every other note is taped too. I was going to record the MacPherson chanter last night, but it was just going to take longer to tune than the amount of time I had before bed.

  2. I’ve been “lurking about” on your blog for some time now and have always enjoyed your posts, your piping, videos, and pics. I have refrained from comment until now, but wanted to jump in and tell you how impressed I am with your MacPhersons. [Bit jealous…mine are still a couple of months out…I’ll share pics when they arrive, if you’re interested…fully combed & beaded, with custom, hand-engraved ANODIZED BRASS (done by David Davidse), with Boxwood mounts, bushings, and bulb…] Anyway, I primarily play an old (i.e., 1970’s) Naill chanter, a MacLellan Gael (both ABW), or a CK Laminate. So, my question is, how does the MacPherson chanter “feel” compared to other chanters? Finger spacing, crispness of holes, etc….

    Thanks, Patrick! Please keep up the great work!

  3. The MacPherson chanter is quite similar to the other chanters you listed in finger spacing. Not sure on the crispness, I want to say ‘soft’ but I’m not home to feel. I think the low A is a little sharp; of course, I’d rather tape than have the hole farther down. I might check to make sure the low G isn’t sharp because taping the tone holes will bring the low A down too. Pitches consistently around 476 Hz. It’s a decent chanter and would work well even for beginners as all the notes are quite close, only needing small corrections to get everything spot on. I haven’t tried any of my ‘best’ reeds yet as they’re all seated and tuned in other chanters, hence my use of the Kyo chanter. So far the tone has been kind of soft, but I’m also stuck with using easier reeds that are slightly past their prime. I’ve got some new reeds coming in so I’ll dedicate one of them to the MacPherson chanter in hopes of giving it a proper run through and test. It’ll need a bit of beefing up to match these drones the way I have them set.

    Please do share pictures when you get your’s in. The brass with the boxwood sounds like a unique and cool combination, certainly something I’ve not seen before.

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