The Companion to The How To Manual for Piobaireachd by Archie Cairns
Archie Cairns's Companion to the How To Piobaireachd Manual provides the components for 30 tunes. The piper must use his or her knowledge of Piobaireachd construction to play the complete tunes. The companion CD demonstrates the essential parts of each Piobaireachd.
Excerpts from Archie Cairns's Introduction to The Companion:
"As suggested by many Pipers, I have written out some tunes with the same method of staff notation I used in the excerpts and examples in my Piobaireachd Manual. This being that, aside from the notation, in most tunes I only write out Phrases that are repeated ONCE, although in a few tunes complete Lines are written out. I selected 30 tunes of varying constructions and degrees of difficulty, including the 3 types - Conventional, Breabach and Fosgailte.
The methodology being that the Piper, having learned 'How To' in the Piobaireachd Manual, he/she would use the skills/information/ concepts/ material gleaned from the Manual to assist in reading, understanding, memorizing and playing the tunes in The 'Companion'... "
"...Just as I stated in the 'How To' Piobaireachd Manual that 'it is NOT a 'do-it-yourself' book', the same applies to The 'Companion.' An experienced piobaireachd instructor is recommended in order to learn the many subtleties and nuances in our 'big music.'
On the CD, I play (on the practice chanter) SOME of the Phrases and Lines from EVERY tune to demonstrate the interpretation of what is written. It is then Up To YOU, following the instructions reference the construction, to put the tune together. This system has proven to be very successful in the memorizing and playing of a tune. NONE of the 30 tunes are played in their entirety for, to do so, I feel would make the printed settings of little use. For all you would need is my recording of each complete tune, and this would defeat the purpose of The 'Companion.'"