Practice in the Park! May 14th 2022

The band is performing this Saturday early afternoon, and will be holding our weekly practice immediately afterwards (weather permitting), in Nose Creek Park.  This will be a relaxed practice, and an opportunity for the community to come out and meet the members of the band.

We expect to be there around 1:30p.m. and expect to wrap up by around 3.

If you play, are interested in learning, or Highland Dance, come say Hi!

Also, we are looking to add Brass and Reed instruments to the band, so if you play one of those, we’d like to speak to you!

We held our AGM tonight.

Meeting minutes will be posted over the next week or so.

We made the difficult decision tonight to postpone our Robbie Burns dinner and performance until March.  This is to allow us to see how Covid continues to play out, as well as give us some additional time to prepare for the evening.  That said, we are intending to partner with a local pub to have a “pub night” (maybe afternoon) the weekend after the Bard’s birthday.

We also confirmed that we will continue to practice Sunday afternoons.  New members are always welcome.

In Person practices are resuming

With the easing of restrictions announced earlier this week, we are resuming in person practices.

We have room for a few more players before we hit the 10 limit.

We will be 3M spacing (minimum) during playing.  The floor of the warehouse we practice in has 10×10 ft squares so the measurements are easy 🙂

We wear masks when not blowing the pipes (drummers get to wear theirs all evening).

We maintain the spacing even in sectionals and full band on practice instruments.

We are also looking to add some Brass and Reed players to augment the band.  Think Royal Regiments on Parade style.

Preparing for the time everything returns to more normal!

We held a band practice last night.  While in the strictest sense we could have followed social distancing guidance and gathered in one large place, we took a different approach.

We fired up Zoom video conferencing and gave that a try.  We will continue to work out technical challenges, but here is a few things we experienced with our first try:

  • The meeting host was on a laptop, and every time the roll-offs started, the built in mic couldn’t handle the volume change (auto adjustments) until after the 2nd roll.  So we all had to be very good at counting time 🙂
  • Cell phone versions of Zoom don’t have the same settings controls.  We discovered that the app automatically adjusts the speaker volume down when the mic detects sound.  I’m sure its to prevent feedback, but it did prevent us from having everyone hear everyone else.  We are looking at using headphones and/or computers (laptops) where available.
  • We had each participant other than the meeting host mute their mic so that they could hear over the speaker the streamed music (below).

Fortunately, the Pipe Major had previously recorded each of the medleys as an MP3 for each member to practice with during the time apart, so we were able to stream that from the meeting host (including the bass and snare parts on his side) so everyone was able to play along together even if we couldn’t hear all the other players.

We hope you are staying healthy and safe!