Archive for the ‘Band News’ Category


good, old-fashioned rivalry…

As we continue the patter and pitter of the bagpipes and drums at rehearsal this weekend — next weekend members of the Wake & District Public Safety Pipes and Drums hit the road to Mt. Pleasant, SC for the 43rd Charleston Scottish Games & Highland Gathering being held at the historic Boone Hall Plantationthese games mark the kick-off of the the back half of the Southern EUSPBA season.   We missed the games last year in order to attend the Celtic Classic — and are looking forward to both our Grade 4 and Grade 5 members taking the field in band and solo competition events.  We also look forward to seeing all the Southern EUSPBA bands — and as we look around, we see no enemies – just good, old-fashioned rivalry. 

We will surely post a plethora of photos and results from the field.  To all  the bands, our families, friends and fans heading out…SAFE TRAVELS.  



an unwanted reminder…

Where were you…it’s a simple question understood by anyone alive on September 11, 2001; an unwanted reminder for those who witnessed the horror of our Nation’s day of crisis as uncertainty stretched beyond our borders and illustrated by our enemies’ hatred and capability of doing harm to us. That September day started quietly as early Fall leaves gently landed on top of the morning shadows of New York, Washington D.C. and Shanksville, Pennsylvania, but turned horrible after passenger jets and skyscrapers fell out of the sky holding thousands of souls trapped inside evil fires.

We all have our own story of where we were, but today we all find ourselves looking back together. And we will never forget.


a privileged gesture of trust…

Tomorrow, the sun will rise over New York City. Tomorrow, the sun will rise over this country we love, this special place, this state of grace. For all those directly impacted by the events of 9-11, we cannot bear, as you do, the full impact of this tragedy. But we feel the loss, and we’re thinking about you so very much. Your loved ones are never forgotten – we salute everyone impacted by that day.

The salute is an expression which recognizes a personal commitment of self-sacrifice – a way to show respect; a privileged gesture of trust.


on we go…

“Go back?” he thought. “No good at all! Go sideways? Impossible! Go forward? Only thing to do! On we go!” So up he got, and trotted along with his little sword held in front of him and one hand feeling the wall, and his heart all of a patter and a pitter.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien

The patter and pitter of the bagpipes and drums (and a metronome on steroids) echoed through the North Carolina State Highway Patrol Training Center this past Saturday morning as members of the Wake and District G5 and G4 competition bands drilled and drilled and drilled.  The tunes, the tone and the ensemble playing is getting better and better each time we take the instruments out of the box.  We are preparing for the back half our the EUSPBA “Southern Branch” competitions which begin in Charleston on Saturday, 20 September 2014.  We’ve come so far together and look forward to so many possibilities…

Would you believe the skirl of the pipes and beat of the drums sooth the soul of 1 month old baby; that or they cause an explosion inside the diaper of the same child…LOVE you little Corinne.


it’s a hard instrument…

In the words of our Pipe Major’s instructor, the late Dave McKee Sr. “…it’s a hard instrument to learn, it really is. You’re going to be a part of hundreds of years of piping history and we don’t want you to let down that tradition…”.  Take pride – your preserving a long, colorful tradition.  As a band, we have to keep the band going — and the only way to do that is to perpetuate the band by bringing in new students.  

CONGRATULATIONS to our 5 newest pipers – Antonio Raynor, Scott Munn, Ashby Spratley, Silas Wells and Brian Wells on making it through an 18+ month crucible — learning the practice chanter and bagpipes then bringing them together to play and pass your audition process.  It’s not easy, but now you a part of our tradition.

We LOVE the music – it’s the greatest music in the world.    You’re now members of the band – piping the tunes of glory.

In the words of Captain Han Solo — don’t get cocky. 

Welcome to the band.


so many amazing performances…

Congratulations to Pipe Major Richard Parkes MBE, MSc and all the members of the Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band on winning the 2014 World Pipe Band Championships (a 4-peat).  Throughout the 2014 season so many great bands put on so many amazing performances — congratulations to all the bands around the world.

With the Green now empty and the #WPBC2014 come and gone - we look forward to the back half of our season and big changes ahead in 2015 when we intend to raise our standard fielding bands in G3, G4, G5 as well as the introduction of our Juvenile program – the Crossroads Kilty pipe band.   The pipe band world is seeing an evolution of changes in equipment and musicality and it seems pipe bands everywhere are raising the bar — getting bigger and bigger – and better and better.

Time to rehearse….time to get better…



who are you rooting for #WPBC2014…

Bagpipers and Drummers from around the world are descending into Scotland for the 2014 World Pipe Band Championships.  Glasgow welcomes the Worlds back to Glasgow Green on Friday 15 and Saturday 16 August 2014. Saturday’s exciting competition program will comprise 300 performances, including the Grade 1 Championship Finals (the preceding Friday will be dedicated to the Grade 1 Qualifiers).  For those of us who can’t make it over we are grateful to and the BBC for streaming both the G1 qualifiers and the championships — we can’t wait!

The folks at pipes|drums have brought back their pick the six contest with all sorts of GREAT prizes.  Check out the rules and all the information @

Safe travels to all the bands competing and best of luck on the Green.  Wake and District will be watching from our favorite watering hole — Tir Na nOg Irish Pub in Raleigh.


the Spirit of ’76 pipe bands…

The World Pipe Band Championships is the biggest international competition in the pipe band world….. and so much more besides!   The Worlds always brings additional competitions and activity to Glasgow Green, making it a vibrant and hugely entertaining event for all ages and tastes. More information on the Worlds can be found @

Pipers and drummers from around the world will be on the Green or watching online cheering on their favorites.    With the Championships only 10 days away – we wanted to send a special shout-out to the bands from the United States of America heading to Scotland; safe travels and best of luck on the Green.

Here are the bands representing the Spirit of ’76…

Grade 1

- Los Angeles Scottish Pipe Band
- Stuart Highlanders

Grade 2

- New York Metro Pipe Band
- Portland Metro Pipe Band
- St Thomas Alumni Pie Band

Grade 3a

- Worcester Kiltie

Grade 4a

- Stuart Highlanders

Grade 4B

- House of Scotland Pipe Band
- Saffron United Pipe Band
- Sir James McDonald Pipe Band


On Friday 15 August the Grade 1 Qualifiers will take place. 

The competition will be streamed online HERE.
On Saturday 16 August all other competition, including the Championship Finals, will take place.
The competition will be streamed online via the BBC website.
We’ll add a link to this page as soon as we have it.




in celebration of their journey…

On Monday, 04 August 2014 members of Wake and District cancelled regular rehearsal in order to play the pipes|drums for a special fundraiser hosted by the Carolina Brotherhoodwhich took place at Crank Arm Brewery in Raleigh.  The Carolina Brotherhood was formed as a means to provide both emotional and financial support for the families of those  lost in the line of duty in the Carolinas. They are a cycling group comprised totally of firefighters, police officers, and emergency personnel from throughout North and South Carolina; they ride in the name of our fallen brothers and sisters from the Carolinas.  Wake and District was honored to play a few tunes in celebration of their journey.

This year’s ride honors the 10 first responders from North and South Carolina who laid down their lives in the line of duty last year.

  • Chief Scott Morrison- Knotts Island Volunteer FD, NC
  • Firefighter Tony Baker- Mountain View Volunteer FD, NC
  • Captain David Heath- New Hanover County Fire Rescue, NC
  • Firefighter Jon Schondelmayer- Swift Creek Rural FD. NC
  • Chief Jeffery Fields- Youngsville Volunteer FD, NC
  • Police Officer Robert Bingaman- Asheville PD, NC
  • Firefighter Michael Broz- Dorchester County FD, SC
  • Chief Rodney Hardee- Loris, SC
  • Deputy Sheriff Joseph Antwine- Florence County SO, SC
  • Deputy Sheriff Tim Causey- Horry County SO, SC

The ride started Raleigh, NC on August 5th and will conclude 5 days later in Charleston, SC covering approximately 500 miles.

#Brotherhood #NeverForgotten


band trading cards…

We are having some fun with our first series of “band trading cards” featuring all fully fledged members of the Wake and District Public Safety Pipes and Drums.  Members with silver stars on the bottom right corner are founding band members.  The full set of “cards” can be seen on our facebook page here.   Some really interesting fun facts emerging about our band members in for form of comments on individual trading cards.  Again – this is the first series — we plan on a line of throwback, rookie, NCO moments of brilliance cards and more…  Maybe we will event step outside of our circle for fun with other bands or starz of the pipe band world.