For this bagpipe lesson Bill shows you how to play strikes, which are very brisk
tap or bounce by certain fingers used to separate some notes just as a grace note.
Wikipedia defines a Strike
as “A grace note played by tapping one or more fingers on the chanter”
Listen To Bill's Audio Instruction
(Note: If you are using Internet Explorer click twice on the triangle.)
Watch Bill's Video Instruction
Strike on low “A”:
Sound low “A” for about a second or two, then with the lower hand little finger strike the
lowest hole once, raising the little finger very smartly. The strike should bounce back
without any lingering to above its hole. (At first you may leave the little finger on the
hole a bit longer than the grace note timing to become accurate and familiar.) Play
crisply with progress. It is important that the little finger should rise almost quicker than it
went downwards. Repeat with each strike in an even steady rhythm. Study the video clip.
Strike on “B”:
In much the same way as the previous strike sound “B” then strike rapidly with the
remaining lower hand two fingers together down and up. Beware of playing an unwanted
run by lifting the little finger ahead of the “B” finger. Repeat steadily.
Strike on “C”:
Sound “C” then, with the little finger on, smartly strike once with the two raised
fingers – down/up. If necessary play the low “G” grace note a bit longer at
first, then progress to a clean very slick strike (light tap). Repeat steadily in an even
Strikes on “D”:
This one can be done in two ways. The earlier stage simpler way is to strike “C” with the
forefinger only very smartly once like the others. Repeat. The other more advanced way
which can be practised later if not now is to strike with all the remaining fingers of the lower
hand together (little finger already on) without any hint other than the sound of one low “G”
strike only. There should be no hint of runs or the like by lifting some fingers one after the
other. Repeat correctly as usual.
Strike on “E”:
Simply sound “E”, then strike smartly the low “A” with the “E”
finger, in the usual manner. Remember the swift return action, always with the finger/s above
the proper holes. Repeat.
Strike on “F”:
Sound “F” then with the “F” second finger smartly strike “E”.
Strike on high “G”:
Sound high “G”, then with the high “G” forefinger strike
smartly “F”. Repeat.
Strike on high “A”:
Sound high “A” then with the thumb cross high “G” with a short sharp
flick across the hole. The flick across the hole is easier and produces a smarter grace note
sound than if attempting a straight strike. Repeat.
These strikes like the earlier exercises are to assist you soon in playing simple tunes.
Therefore, please revise correctly all that has gone before.