PS 021 – The Park Pibroch

      Pìobaireachd na Pàirce

Primary Sources

C1 Pibarich N’a paichk C1.20: 45
D2 D2.48: 268
K1 Piobaireachd na Pairc / The Park Piobaireachd / The Battle of Park K1.114: 255
K2 Index: Piobaireachd na Pairc / Index: The Park Pibroch K2.27: 56
KK Piobaireachd na Pairc / Index: The (Stirling) Park Pibroch KK.83: 164

Notes on the Gaelic Title

Pìobaireachd na Pàirce  Pibarich na parichk C1 index; Pibarich N’a paichk C1; Piobaireachd na Pairc / The Park Piobaireachd: The Battle of Park K1; Piobaireachd na Pairc / The Park Pibroch K2 index; Piobaireachd na Pairc KK; The (Stirling) Park Pibroch KK index. The Park Pibroch, though Angus MacKay’s (K1) alternative of The Battle of Park seems better. The battle has been given various late-fifteenth century dates, with 1491 being the most widely accepted. It took place on a field just south of Strathpeffer and ‘was called ever after Blare ni Pairk’ (The Wardlaw Manuscript, 1666, ed. W. MacKay, 1905, p. 112). It was evidently well remembered in Highland tradition, but no relatively recent traditions or songs have been pointed out.

Roderick Cannon (2009), rev. Barnaby Brown 2015

Archive Recordings

1961 Pipe Major John D. Burgess MBE
1966 Pipe Major / Captain John A. MacLellan MBE
1971 Pipe Major Robert U. Brown MBE

Other Material

2001 William Donaldson: Set Tunes Notes
2008 William Donaldson: Set Tunes Notes
2014 Barnaby Brown: chant score in Campbell notation
2015 Barnaby Brown: article in Piping Today, ‘Blàr na Pàirce – The Battle of Park, c. 1491’ Part 1 | Part 2 (with vocables in staff notation)
2015 Barnaby Brown: video of performance reconstructing an 18th-century playing style

Notes on the Music

C1 contains a musical journey with a home and a destination that appear to have separated in later settings. Its Ùrlar relates to K1 and KK (published as ‘Tune No. 1’ in PS Book 4, page 113), whereas its Taoluth relates to D2 and K2 (published as ‘Tune No. 2’ in PS Book 4: 115). Could the Ùrlar of Tune No. 2 be a re-composition, bringing the cycles into closer alignment? The musical journey in C1 is more adventurous, but no more so than is normal in Campbell’s collection. On 27 June 2014, I made an experimental recording singing from this ‘chant-score’ but applying several details of rhythmic information from K1:

      Barnaby Brown vocabelises The Park Pibroch

The sections in square brackets are my own suggestion, guided by eight tunes that sustain a regular measure from start to finish: PS 7, PS 10, PS 20, PS 64, PS 107, PS 135, PS 145 and PS 187. This ‘Ornate’ measure is made visible in the chant score through the use of colour.

Barnaby Brown, 1 July 2014, rev. 18 June 2015

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