Ian Harrison (GB): Northumbrian Smallpipe, Northumbrian Halflong Pipe, Great Highland Pipe, Gaita, Cornemuse du Centre, Gesang

Gesine Bänfer (D): Northumbrian Smallpipe, Great Highland Pipe, Gaita, Cornemuse du Centre, Grand Bourbounnaise, Whistle, Cittern




Early & traditional music from Northumberland

Ian Harrison grew up in Newcastle upon Tyne, home of the last two traditional English bagpipes, the Northumbrian Smallpipes and the Border Pipes.  After studying mediaeval and renaissance music in The Hague and Basel, playing concerts, broadcasting and recording throughout Europe he returned to the ancient and traditional bagpipe music and song of Northumberland and the Scottish Borders.  His original, improvisational and virtuosic approach to this music brings this wild, beautiful and forgotten corner of the world to the heart and mind.  Gesine Bänfer from Germany accompanies him on cittern, whistle and Northumbrian Smallpipes.

Tail Toddle


The Renaissance of the Bagpipe

800 years of bagpipe history in music, words and pictures

By studying original manuscripts, researching in archives, collecting and interpreting iconografic material and listening to master players of surviving music tratitions Gesine Bänfer and Ian Harrison have reconstructed the music of the professional wind players of the middle ages and renaissance.
Folk music, particularly bagpipe music, has inherited the musical language of the middle ages.  The traditional English dance tune Galopede is similar to the 12th--century Nota.  The Ballo inglese  from an Italian source of 1589 sounds great next to the traditional Dorset four-hand reel. Gesine and Ian play pipes from all over Europe, show pictures and spin yarns about this legendary instrument, and present music from 800 years of bagpipe history.