I have a very special affection for pipe tunes and this is one of my favorites. This is the pipe version of ‘Caber Feidh’ or the Deer’s Antler’s. There is also a very common version in the key of C.
What I find fascinating about this tune is that it is pretty much the same tune as the ‘New Copperplate’ from the Irish repertoire. That tune is in the key of G major with the melody containing C naturals while the pipe version of Caber Feidh is in A modal with C#’s. Even though the tune starts on the G chord, the tonal center is A.
I first heard this tune from the playing of Mike MacDougall who was a great Cape Breton fiddler from Ingonish. Both Mike’s father and grandfather were pipers and this piping influence is very evident in his style and repertoire.
Here is a clip of Mike playing this tune from documentary that was aired after he passed away. (this particular tune is played around the 1:35 minute mark).