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A Web Site by Oliver Seeler

Page 14 of 30 illustrating the pipes heard on Bagpipes of the World

For more information on the album click on the cover at left


DUDELSACK
Low Countries, Germany, Austria
conical bore chanter with double-blade reed; 2 cylindrical bore drones with single-blade reeds


Sound Sample in .MP3 format

sound samples copyright 1999 by Oliver Seeler & Sean Folsom


General Comments:

The Dudelsack was once perhaps the most widespread bagpipe in Europe. German-speaking people today still often apply the name generically to all bagpipes, though the correct word is "sackpfife" (literally, sackpipe). An ancient instrument, it is seen - sometimes in considerable detail - in a large number of early paintings including some great masterpieces. At some point, probably in the nineteenth century, it seems to have all but vanished. There exists today only one early specimen, in an Austrian museum, and there is some controversy about how old all or parts of that pipe are. Nevertheless it has been possible to reconstruct the Dudelsack through a combination of study of early paintings and music, and today it enjoys a great revival evidenced by many players and numerous makers.


Musical Notes:


The Dudelsack is a powerful pipe with a majestic yet lively sound. Hearing it, one can easily imagine how a single piper could generate the happy chaos depicted in many scenes in early paintings.


The scales and key signatures given may be regarded as approximations; bagpipes may deviate from conventional standards in absolute and relative pitch.


The Dudelsack being played by Sean Folsom. The drones leaning forward off-shoulder (and being kept from falling by a rawhide tie) are a particular feature of this pipe, probably developed to avoid the trouble players of large bagpipes sometimes have when they can't see the ends of their drones - breaking chandeliers, bopping the king in the eye, and so on.
Both drones emerge from a common stock.

This feature is most practical and would perhaps be more common if it didn't complicate construction considerably.
The pipes out of their stocks, showing the reeds. This configuration of reeds, and the way they are mounted, might be called the conventional Western European style - it's typical of many bagpipes.


Photographs & Text Copyright 1999 - 2002, Oliver Seeler,

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