I posted this bagpipe tune score on the Viper Piper site at
http://www.therealviperpiper.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=13318 Part of the tune’s provenance is covered in an earlier blog here re. my Cornell Sketches pieces and is further explained in the Viper Piper entry. . I know I am giving readers a challenge by scattering tales of the piece here and there. Well I will compound that fault by offering two more stories about it.
A number of years ago, my cousin Neil and his wife Flora were staying for a few days at Cornell University where he was a Visiting Lecturer at the Law School. My wife Kristina and I decided to get together with them there. While walking across the campus I dragged them into a basement practice room of the Music Department and forced them to listen to my seven part Cornell Sketches. When I finished playing the “Bagpipe Tune to Accompany the Climb Up the Libe Slope,” I turned and asked with some trepidation, “Neil, do you think that’s an original melody?” To my great relief and pleasure he agreed that it was indeed. Phew!
Later, when I learned of Neil’s terminal cancer, I decided that I should formalize the bagpipe score of the piece and name it for him and I wrote him as follows.
Neil replied shortly before he died: Typescript follows.
Dear Neil, Thanks for tunes! And sorry for delay in writing. I’ve had a difficult patch lately that prevented me from writing.
I specially like the first of the two tunes, and am much honored by it. Today’s tune seems (forgive me!) over-adorned with non-standard grace notes, but will be none the worse for that if played with suitable instrumentation.Please note e-mail address above. This is now the only mailbox I can access.
All the best and thanks.