1st International Bagpipe Conference - Peter Cooke - The bagpipe in India Wed, 2013-03-27 20:39


The bagpipe in India

Peter Cooke

This paper, based primarily on data collected during fieldwork in1986 will introduce two different types of bagpipe in use in India today. Little more than the briefest descriptions have previously been published concerning the masaq (otherwise known as mashaq, pungi or bin) a bagpipe with short double chanter used by bhopas (musician priests) of the jogi and other castes in north India and in particular, Rajasthan. The paper will provide some organographic details of four masaq, followed by some discussion of its use, the musicians and their repertory, with the aid of photographs, audio recordings, and a short piece of video.

The second instrument with a much shorter history of use, though one that dates from the 18th century, is the Scottish Highland bagpipe. The paper will round off with some illustrations of its use and suggest some reasons for its rapid diffusion throughout the region and its popularity among different sections of society throughout the sub-continent.

Peter Cooke formerly conducted research into Scottish traditional music at Edinburgh University?s School of Scottish Studies and is currently a research Associate at the School of Oriental and African Studies and an Honorary Fellow at the University of Birmingham.