Home David Lairson

David Lairson

David Lairson
David has been playing the bagpipes for over 20 years. He is an instructor and soloist with the Palm Beach Pipes & Drums and a member of the U.S. Coast Guard Pipe Band. David is active in the Florida competition circuit, and when he is not practicing or playing he works as a computer technician. He currently lives in sunny South Florida.

Bagpipers and the Victoria Cross

David Lairson 0
0
58
The Victoria Cross is the highest military award for members of the armed forces of the Commonwealth countries. This award is given for valor in the face of the enemy of the “most conspicuous bravery, or some daring or pre-eminent act of valor or self-sacrifice, or extreme devotion to duty in the presence of the enemy.” We are going to look at three bagpipers who have won this award.

A Games Day Routine

David Lairson 0
0
81
Competing at a highland games, or other venues, can be a nerve-wracking experience. There are so many things you have to think about. Do you have everything you need? Do you remember how the tune goes? Are your reeds going to behave? Do you know where the judges are going to be? There are all sorts of things going through your mind. These sorts of things can effect your performance almost as much as how you play. Having a set “Games Day” routine can help you manage these things and let you focus on your performance.

Ear Protection for the Bagpiper, Part 3

David Lairson 0
0
86
Hearing is the most important tool we have as bagpipers. Being able to tell if your bagpipes are in tune, to hear if you are playing in time with the rest of the band, even to hear the judge compliment your playing (hopefully.) Part 1 of this article discussed the mechanics of hearing and how damage occurs. Part 2 discussed how sound interacts with the ear and how best to protect it. In Part 3 we review a few different types of available ear plugs for musicians.

Ear Protection for the Bagpiper, Part 2

David Lairson 0
0
63
When selecting hearing protecting it is important to understand how humans hear sounds. Part 1 of this series discussed a the mechanics of hearing and how damage can occur. In Part 2 we will look at what we hear and the best way to protect it.

Ear Protection for the Bagpiper, Part 1

David Lairson 0
0
211
Our ears are the most important tool we have when playing the bagpipes.

Breaking the Block

David Lairson 0
0
38
There are always peaks, plateaus, and valleys when trying to improve your playing. When you hit a plateau or slide into a valley, sometimes its hard get motivated. Sometimes at the end of a competition season it’s hard to keep the momentum going for the next season. This happened to me recently. It’s hard, but there are ways to get out of it.

Bagpipes in World War II, Part 2

David Lairson 0
0
508
The role of bagpipes on the front lines of war came to an end after the First World War. The high death toll inflicted on pipers relegated them to duty behind the front line in the camps. However there are always people who defy the rules. Part 1 of this article talked about Bill Millin, the famous piper of D-Day. In Part 2, we'll talk about "Mad Jack" Churchill.

Bagpipes in World War II, Part 1

David Lairson 0
0
1.42K
The role of bagpipes on the front lines of war came to an end after the First World War. The high death toll inflicted on pipers relegated them to duty behind the front line in the camps. However, there are always people who defy the rules, this is the story of two of them.

Pipe Major Donald MacLeod, M.B.E.

David Lairson 0
0
254
Pipe Major Donald MacLeod, M.B.E. was one of the greatest pipers and composers of the 20th century. He served in 51st Highland Division in WWII and was appointed Pipe Major of the Seaforth Highlanders at the age of 25. He published 6 books of light music and one book of piobaireachd. He also released over 40 volumes of piobraireachd tutorials as well as several other recordings.