The Brian Boru bagpipe was invented and patented in 1908 by Henry Starck, an woodwind instrument maker (who also made GHBs), in London, in consultation with William O'Duane. The name was chosen in honour of the Irish king Brian Boru (941-1014), though this bagpipe is not a recreation of any pipes that were played at the time of his reign.

The Brian Boru pipe is related to the Great Highland Bagpipe, but with a chanter that adds four to thirteen keys, to extend both the upper and lower ends of the scale, and optionally adds chromatic notes. His original pipes changed the drone configuration to a single tenor drone pitched one octave below the chanter, a baritone drone pitched one fifth (one fourth, surely? It would be tuned to an E?) below the tenor drone, and a bass drone pitched two octaves below the chanter, following the drone set-up of the Border pipes or Northumbrian. Some later designs of these pipes reverted back to the Great Highland Bagpipe configuration of two tenor drones and one bass drone.

The chanter came in two different systems: one had the keynote of the scale fingered at a GHB's B: this had musical advantages but obviously required relearning and so was not particularly popular. A later design retained the GHB's fingering system and simply added keys to extend the range.

The Brian Boru bagpipe was played for a number of years by the pipe band in the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, as well as a number of civilian pipe bands. It is still played in Ireland but has lost most of its former popularity. Bagpipe makers in both the United Kingdom and Pakistan still make the chanters.

Any links to bands or more info?

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.