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Donald Iain McKenzie of Tain Scotland was one of the World's most recognised players of his day. He was a long term student of John McDonald of Inverness and a highly successful competitor in his own right. He won the Gold Medal for Piobaireachd playing at the Northern Meeting, Inverness in 1912 and also at the Argyllshire Gathering, Oban in 1936. Donald's instrument was a set of 1878; full Britannia Silver mounted McDougall Bagpipes turned from Ebony and engraved in a thistle design. The tenor tops were repaired by Peter Henderson Ltd at some stage and have a brighter, more vibrant tone than most McDougall pipes that I have heard. This is a great combination producing a strong drone sound and is one of the loveliest sets of pipes I have heard.

Donald's son Hamish McKenzie immigrated to Adelaide, Australia after serving with the Scots Guards during the Second War. He was a well known Piobaireachd teacher, himself having been a long term student of John MacDonald as well. He also tutored the Heather Girls Pipe Band for some many years and was the first Principal of Piping of the R U Brown Piobaireachd Society.


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The McKenzie Bagpipe, made its way to Adelaide after the passing of Donald Iain, and is now in the possession of Craig Masson, current President of the R U Brown Piobaireachd Society. More information and pictures of this and other unique bagpipes can be found in "The Complete Pipers Handbook". This is the most comprehensive guide to the set up, maintenance and refinement of the bagpipe available today. Sales fund the freely available school of piping website and copies are available here:


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