Vt. bagpipers set to take the world stage - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vt. bagpipers set to take the world stage

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MONTPELIER, Vt. -

The bagpipe comes together quickly; it can be assembled quickly just about anywhere. Its sound is unmistakable.

Meet world class bagpiper Iain MacHerg.

"It's family tradition for me; I am a fourth generation player. My great-grandfather learned to play during the war. He was a fighter pilot in the first World War. He learned to play there," MacHerg said.

The Marshfield musician is a founding member of the Catamount Pipe Band.

"So, we are blowing into this section into the bag and by pressing on the bag and these three sections are called drones and they have reeds as well," MacHerg said.

It's not as complicated as it might appear.

MacHerg and the pipers travel the Green Mountains promoting Celtic music and culture; many speak the language.

You'll see the Catamount Pipe Band perform in parades, wowing crowds with their powerful performances. They'll go nonstop over the next few days, playing and marching in parades celebrating America's independence. It's a good tune up for the international stage.

"Best bands in the world really, ya' know," MacHerg said.

Next month, they take their music overseas, ready to compete in the World Pipe Band Championships in Scotland. It's rare an American band wants to take on bagpipers from the United Kingdom.

"They judge the pipe playing, harmonies, the tuning and whatnot, and the drumming judge and the assemble judge, how the two fit well together," MacHerg said.

It's practice and perseverance that's paid off for these who love the traditional music that's been around for centuries.

The Catamount Pipe Band leaves for Scotland soon. The competition is set for August 17-18.

Potential corporate sponsors are invited to contact Catamount Pipe Band Manager James Mulligan at 802-426-3694 or jm.catamountpipeband@gmail.com to discuss sponsorship details. Individual donations may be made online at CatamountPipeBand.org.

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