Funeral Piper

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Image of typical funeral uniform for highland piperHaving a piper playing pipe music at a funeral helps family and friends to focus their emotions.  Nothing is more heartfelt than a tune played expertly on the Highland Pipes.  Pipers can play for ALL funerals within ALL religions and creeds, and you can always discuss tunes with the piper beforehand.  Scottish, Irish, Welsh and English funerals, Asian, African and Middle Eastern funerals can all be catered for, after all the bagpipe is now an international instrument !
 
A piper playing at a funeral would normally wear Highland Day Dress, which comprises kilt and day sporran, shirt and black tie, with a black or dark grey day jacket and plain hose.  A Glengarry or Balmoral Bonnet should be worn to complete the outfit.  Bob Ash has a kilt, made for funerals, in the weathered Black Watch tartan, featuring 'autumnal' colours of grey and brown, which is more suitable for the occasion than brighter tartans.  A military or Royal British Legion funeral would normally require the piper wearing full highland dress uniform.
 
The piper needs to be adaptable at a funeral, as there are many different variations possible (Church service, Chapel service, burial, cremation, processions etc.)
 
For a cremation, the piper would normally meet the hearse a few hundred yards before the chapel, and pipe the hearse up to the doors of the chapel with suitable marching tunes such as "The Rowan Tree", "The Old Rustic Bridge", "Lord Lovat".  Other tunes can always be requested instead. ( Playing slow airs to lead the hearse would be a no - no, as they are far too slow.)
 
Then, the piper will play the coffin into the chapel and up the aisle, with a slow air.  This could be "Amazing Grace", "Flower of Scotland" or any other suitable slow tune.
 
The piper may also be asked to play a tune later in the service, often a lament after the committal. "Flowers of the Forest", "Sleep, Dearie, Sleep" are often played at this point.
 
After the service, the piper will often play outside as the mourners leave the chapel and gather at the flowers, usually at a distance to allow family and friends to converse.
 
With a burial, the piper's playing in the church will be similar to that in a chapel, followed by the piper leading the coffin to the graveside with suitable marching tunes.  After the committal, the piper will often play a lament by the graveside, such as "Flowers of the Forest", then, later, some suitable slow airs, walking away in the distance at the end.
 
It may be that the family would prefer not to have slow airs played at the end, but rather more cheerful tunes.  This is no problem for the experienced piper - there are hundreds of uplifting tunes that can be played !

Please Scroll Down To Watch Video Clips
Of Some The Tunes That A Funeral Piper Might Play

Funeral Piper Clip One
 
Funeral Piper Clip Two
 
Funeral Piper Clip Three
 

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