Saturday, April 21, 2018

May Gathering - May 6, 2018

The May Gathering of the Bloomington Pipers' Society will take place on May 6, 2018! This is the last gathering before the summer season, so come on out.

The meeting's first hour will be headed up by Angus Martin, giving a piobaireachd mini-workshop. The tune which will be reviewed is Clan Campbell's Gathering. Angus will also be providing a crash-course in piobaireachd embellishments, the Piobaireachd Society notation, and piobaireachd construction. Always wanted to learn a bit of piobaireachd, but always have been intimidated, or simply never had the opportunity? Come on out!

The second hour we'll play through the Pipers' Society set tunes which we have already covered since December, and will have the opportunity for individuals and groups to play their performing and competition sets for the summer.

The tunes we'll play through:
  • Skye Boat Song
  • Oft in a Stilly Night
  • Rocking the Baby
  • Dawning of the Day
  • Minstrel Boy
  • Kelly the Boy from Killane
  • Atholl Highlanders (4 parts)
We hope to see you on May 6!

  • St. Thomas Lutheran Church
  • 3800 E 3rd Street (corner of east 3rd and Smith Road)
    • Enter through the west end doors
  • Sunday, May 6th
  • 4:00 - 6:00pm

Thursday, March 8, 2018

March Gathering - March 11th, 2018

The March Gathering of the Bloomington Pipers' Society will take place on March 11, 2018!

In our first hour we'll be doing tune recaps and walking through two new tunes! The new tunes will be Minstrel Boy, and Kelly the Boy From Killane. Grade 1 piper and FTPB pipe sergeant Angus Martin will lead the tune walk-through session. This portion will run from 4:00PM to 5:00PM.

At 5:00PM, Dr. John Holcombe will be running a mini-workshop on the use of water manometers for blowing control and tone training. If you already have a water manometer, bring it alone! Otherwise, John will have 5 additional manometers available for use. This workshop is free.

Music will be provided for the tune session, and instructions and directions to build your own water manometer will be provided for the workshop.

  • St. Thomas Lutheran Church
  • 3800 E 3rd Street (corner of east 3rd and Smith Road)
    • Enter through the west end doors
  • Sunday, March 11th
  • 4:00 - 6:00pm

Saturday, February 3, 2018

February Gathering - February 4th, 2018

The February Gathering of the Bloomington Pipers' Society will take place on February 4, 2018! The event begins at 4:00PM, with a bagpipe competition preparation session starting at 4:30PM.Pipe Major Campbell White will be running a session to help individuals get ready for performing in competition in the coming season, starting at the February 24 Louisville Competition.

From 4:00PM to 4:30PM, there will be a review of the December and January Pipers' Society set tunes - Skye Boat Song, Oft in a Stilly Night, Rocking the Baby, and Dawning of the Day.

  • St. Thomas Lutheran Church
  • 3800 E 3rd Street (corner of east 3rd and Smith Road)
    • Enter through the west end doors
  • Sunday, February 4th
  • 4:00 - 6:00pm

Saturday, January 6, 2018

January Gathering - January 7th, 2018

Happy New Year!

This month we will be continuing our BPS 2018 Set Tunes walkthrough in the first hour. We'll recap the December 2017 tunes quickly, then dive into January's tunes - the short jig Rocking the Baby, and the 4/4 march Dawning of the Day.

In the second hour we will kick off the new year with free play sessions for local and regional bagpipers. Do you have a tune you'd like others to take a listen to, a set of bagpipes you think other pipers would be interested in, or some difficulty with some reeds? Bring your pipes out and join us!

We're continuing our membership drive! Sign up sheets for BPS membership will be available, and we are currently finalizing layout and design for the new BPS tune books. Check, cash, and PayPal is accepted. Individual memberships are $25 per year, and Family memberships are $40 per year. Please see our Membership page for more details.

Come out and celebrate the start of the Pipers' Society's 3rd year!
  • St. Thomas Lutheran Church
  • 3800 E 3rd Street (corner of east 3rd and Smith Road)
    • Enter through the west end doors
  • Sunday, January 7th
  • 4:00 - 6:00pm


Monday, December 4, 2017

December 2017 Gathering Report

The December Gathering this year was a low-key affair, drilling down into tunes and prepping performance material for our members for the coming season.

Angus running the Set Tunes Club.
The afternoon kicked off with a walk-through of two tunes from the Bloomington Pipers' Society's set tunes - the aire "Skye Boat Song" and the jig "Oft in a Stilly Night". These two pieces are bite-sized tunes which are fun to play and were the first tunes featured in our monthly Set Tunes Club because they are great for pulling out at performances. The Set Tunes are meant to give Society members and other pipers in the area a common set of tunes to perform together, regardless of if they're in different bands, or no bands at all.

After running through the tunes, the pipers present took out their pipes to give the instruments a go. Chris Eller took up his pipes to do a test run of his 2018 solo competition 2/4 March, "Captain Norman Orr Ewing". After a bit of tuning on "Skye Boat Song", he did an initial run on the tune. After the first run he played it again. Chris' pipes had a good powerful sound, and his the pipes were well tuned.

Chanter student Wolfe took up the stage next to perform his piece for competition, the 2/4 March "Teribus". Wolfe performed this piece at the Bloomington Bagpipe Recital on November 28, and it continues to come together. Wolfe is the first practice chanter student to have performed solo at a BPS meeting.

Society president Angus Martin pulled out his pipes to set up a reed in one of his solo chanters. After fiddling with a reed, and an aggressive amount of attention on the high-G, Angus got the chanter set decently. He then performed two of his three 2018 competition 2/4 Marches back to back - first "Millbank Cottage", followed by "The Knightswood Celeidh". Going into part 3 of Millbank Cottage Angus had a bit of a memory bauble, but got back on and finished the tunes.

Next month we will be holding the second session of the Set Tunes Club, tackling the jig "Rocking the Baby" and the 4/4 March "Dawning of the Day". Set Tunes Club will go from 4:00pm to 5:00pm, followed by the January Gathering proper, from 5:00pm to 6:00pm. Details about the gathering program will be coming in the next week or so. Bound 2018 Set Tune volumes will be available for Society members, and registration forms will be available for those interested in becoming a member.


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

December Gathering - December 3rd, 2017

Grab your chanters and pipes and come out to work through some of the BPS tunes list! Grade 1 bagpiper and teacher Angus Martin will be running through tunes from the BPS tune book - Skye Boat Song, and Oft in a Stilly Night - as part of a new series. Loose sheets will be available for pipers looking to join the walk-through.

Sign up for BPS membership and receive your own copy of the BPS Set Tunes book at the January Gathering! Membership forms will be available on Sunday. Individual memberships are $25 per year, and Family memberships are $40 per year.

The second hour will be a free play time for pipers to blow out the cobwebs before they go home for the holidays to entertain their families. Come out for some lively music!


  • St. Thomas Lutheran Church
  • 3800 E 3rd Street (corner of east 3rd and Smith Road)
    • Enter through the west end doors
  • Sunday, December 3rd
  • 4:00 - 6:00pm

Sunday, October 29, 2017

November Gathering - November 5th, 2017


Welcome to the holiday season preparation Gathering of 2017 the season of the Bloomington Pipers' Society! Pipers, drummers, dancers, and those who enjoy spending time with us are all welcome (bring friends).

Grade 1 piper and teacher, Angus Martin, will work with the pipers present to learn a selection of traditional holiday tunes and get them up on pipes by the end of the gathering. Pipers, please bring your practice chanters in addition to your bagpipes.

  • St. Thomas Lutheran Church
  • 3800 E. 3rd Street (corner of east 3rd and Smith Road)
    • Enter through the west end doors
  • Sunday, November 5th
  • 4:00 - 6:00pm