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A bagpipe is a wind instrument made up of a leather bag with one or more pipes attached to it.
There are many varieties of bagpipes and practically all types produce music within a range of nine notes.
The bagpipe is used as a solo instrument often for folk dances and in military bands.
Probably the most popular form of bagpipe is the Great Irish War pipes or the Great Highland pipes which come from Ireland and Scotland.
The bagpipe has a rather shady history and the exact origins are not conclusively known. Its beginnings can be traced back to ancient civilizations, and has even been mentioned in the Bible.
Historians believe the bagpipe was invented in Sumeria, but was introduced to Persia and India through Celtic migration. The pipes then eventually reached Greece and Rome.
A strange looking instrument, the bagpipe is so constructed as to allow a continuous supply of air. The flow of the air can be maintained in both the drone pipes and chanter by squeezing the bag while a breath is taken. The mouth pipe has a round piece of leather that acts as a one-way valve. When the piper blows air, the valve opens and when the piper stops to take in air, the valve closes.
Learning to play the bagpipe can be a rewarding experience. But this unique instrument can be a challenge to learn. It requires dedication and a high degree of motivation to master. Because the reeds of the chanter and the three drones are always blowing off tunes, there is no silence in between notes. Fast fingers are required.
The precision required in delivering the right volume of air, and the lack of ability to repeat the same bagpipe notes in succession do not help piper beginners in learning faster, either.
Still, the richness of sound, and the distinctness of a bag pipe appeals to many people all over the world.
The best place to buy bagpipes online is a supplier of traditional instruments like flutes and clarinets.