The Royal Scots Cap Badge

The competition MSR

by Stephen Matthews
(Ballarat, Victoria, Australia)

I am fairly certain that competition marches, strathspeys and reels have been played together in solo piping competition for longer than they have been in pipe band competitions, but approximately when did each take place? It is my understanding that pipe band competitions have only existed outside the British Army since the very late 1890s at best and Cowal for civilians in 1906 (although I'm happy to stand corrected).

Were MSRs played from the start along with quicksteps and perhaps airs, or did MSRs as a competition staple in bands come later (I have heard the 1930s as a suggestion)?

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Aug 08, 2011
The competiton MSR
by: Bill Robertson

Hello Stephan,
I think you are probably correct in your assumtion about competitions in civilian bands. Pipes and Drums in the Highland regiments were first approved in the British Army about 1854. The other Scottish regiments were approved some time later.

I do not know when MSR etc., competitions started etc., in Scotalnd in civilian bands. I recollect in my youth back in Scotland that it was only the MSR event that took place in band competitions - late forties to early 50s.

I suggest that you search under the Royal Scottsh Pipe Band Association website concerning history of pipe band competitions etc.

Best wishes,

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