Wednesday, October 28, 2009

What Do You Play?

Earlier this month, pipes|drums released results from a survey taken from the Premier and A Grade pipers from the entries at the Argyllshire Gathering and Nothern Meeting contests regarding the types of products they use...chanters, drones, pipe bag, moisture control system and of course, chanter reeds.
Amongst the survey, Troy reeds held good standing with both groups (19% and 16%) and overall with 17%, consistently ranked second in line with Shepherd reeds and behind the Donald MacPhee make. Interestingly enough, there was a mention of one piper still playing a McAllister reed from the 1990s! This was before our purchase of the business and holds testament to the quality and structure of the McAllister chanter reed model, which remains unchanged to this day.
Also, the survey explored the various makes of drone reeds which the top players are using. With only one player incorporating an all cane set up, many were using a combination of cane and synthetic.
(NOTE: This article is only accessed through a subscription to
On that note, there has been talk about re-introducing Troy cane drone reeds into the product offer from JWT Reedmakers. James W. has been involved with drone reed making for years but put it on hold in order to focus on perfecting the Troy bagpipe chanter reed. With a new model in the works with that as well, the inspiration to produce a quality cane drone reed once again came. The drone reeds will feature a new spring (paperclip) which has been master-minded in conjunction with Dr. Gordon Pollock, a former member of the City of Victoria Pipe Band.
Feedback has been positive and this will be in the works shortly. Be on the look out for new product soon!