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No, they are NOT the same instrument! However, I've been playing the Loch Lomond/Scotland the Brave arrangement in the tuning C G C G C D...sounds beautiful and very harp-like to imply the resonance of the bagpipes. Pitch the guitar down 1 1/2 steps to really get the full effect. Anyone ever try this?
Richard Gilewitz

Tags: 12, bagpipes, string

Views: 140

Replies to This Discussion

I'm afraid I have never had the pleasure of accompanying bagpipes. However, I have learned a lot about dropped D and some open tunings for the 12string recently. I think drone strings work well on the 12string. Were you referring to matching resonances of the 12 string to the bagpipes? I'd be interested in hearing some examples if you have them! Feel free to share them here. I've heard dropped D tuning referred to as "English Tuning". Perhaps this refers to the bagpipe drone effect on the guitar?
What a nightmare. It's hard enough keeping a 12-string in tune. Trying to keep it in tune with bagpipes (which don't stay tuned any better than a 12-string) must be a struggle. I once tried to accompany a guy on bagpipes with a 6-string and I couldn't hear myself think! Dang! Those pipes are loud! The best thing to use to accompany bagpipes is a Strat plugged into a Marshall half-stack!
... or maybe a half a continent of separation.
I had the pleasure of knowing the late John Allen Cameron as a good friend. For those that don't know he was famous for playing bagpipe tunes on the twelve string guitar. Some called him the father of Celtic music here in Canada. About a year before he died I got him to come out to my folk club (The Durham Region Folk Circle) and play up close and personal for the club what a treat it was to have him there. He has over 12 cassettes to his credit and I introduced him to guy who transferred his cassettes to CD for him. I believe they are still available today.
What's the difference between bagpipes and an onion? No one cries when you cut up the bagpipes!
I think that RG was talking about playing pipe tunes on the guitar, as opposed to accompanying the pipes. I do pipe tunes quite a bit, but I use DADGAD pitched down about 2 whole steps. I started off doing a bunch of Al Petteway's tunes & arrangements. I found that a number of them sat well on the 12-string.

I play a 12-string arrangement of "Amazing Grace" that is based on a bagpipe arrangement that I heard at the Scottish Games when I was growing up.
It was a feeble attempt at humor on my part to suggest a Bagpipe/Guitar duet.
I do agree that open tunings on a 12 string work very nicely with Celtic/Scottish music in general. Amazing Grace is certainly one of them!
After listening to some Tenor Guitar Celtic pieces, I am learning that open tunings are employed here also. Rather than pipes, they seem to mimic the Dulcimer.
I have not used this exact tuning but I have experimented with the use of C G C G C C. I believe Don Ross uses it for "Loaded, Leather, Moonroof". It gives the 12 string a nice deep voicing that is fun to experiment with. I'll try raising the 1st string to a D next time I'm in this tuning thanks for the Info.

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