Selecting Bagpipe Tunes

Tunes should be chosen to match the desired atmosphere of the event. From upbeat, lively tunes for weddings and celebrations to slower, more reverent tunes for memorials, funerals, and celebrations of life. Most bagpiping tunes come in the following formats:

  • Marches (M): as the name implies, these tunes are meant to coincide with the rhythm and pace of marching. These tunes are ideal for entering or departing an event. Marches work well with nearly any event including weddings, parties, and parades. Bagpipe marches typically come in time signatures including 3/4, 4/4, 6/8, and 9/8.
  • Strathspeys (S) and jigs (J): meant primarily for dancing, these tunes feature quick, unique beats.
  • Reels (R) and hornpipes (H): slightly slower than strathspeys and jigs, but still upbeat and lively.
  • Slow Aires (A): these tunes are generally slower and showcase the reverence and haunting beauty of the bagpipers. These tunes are typically used in memorials and commemorations, but can be used for golf course sunset ceremonies or even weddings.