Here's an example of what you're talking about: Chris Evans using a
   drinking straw to extend his D drone to C.

   [1]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OaYiveqihsc&feature=mfu_in_order&list
   =UL

   I wish Chris would put a few more videos up on youtube.  Nigel made him
   a lovely set of pipes, and, of course, he plays them very well.





   On Sun, May 8, 2011 at 2:49 AM, Julia Say <[2]julia....@nspipes.co.uk>
   wrote:

     On 8 May 2011, a.d.s wrote:
     >     More you
     >    get away from the keys of G and D, and play in A maj., C maj.,
     F maj.,
     >    B maj., the more keys are played with the thumb and little
     finger in
     >    succession; like playing the piano with one finger! .....Have
     we got to
     >    the key of C yet?
     Having played the guitar somewhere back in the dim and distant past,
     I have been
     very surprised that few pipers seem aware of the "circle of fifths"
     in chord
     sequences and it's relevance to keys we "can" play in using drones.
     I hold the
     personal position that if you're going to play without drones you're
     not a piper,
     you're a misdirected oboist, but I fully accept that others differ
     on this.
     Taking the drones as chords (a bit like saying "consider a cow as a
     perfect
     sphere", I know), they are set up primarily and historically for G -
     which could be
     said to be our "root" key.  In the circle of fifths, which partially
     goes:
     B - E - A - D - G - C - F - Bb - Eb
     etc - I've left out the ones with lots of flats and sharps and only
     considered
     major (Ionian?) scales - G has D one side (the sharp side) next to
     it. We use D.
     Some of us can use A, also on the sharp side.
     But sitting there, right next to G, is C - so the drones are not
     being forced into
     unnatural contortions to get there in terms of temperament, nor
     should the tuning
     be. (Let's leave those issues to another discussion)
     It became obvious that Tom Clough used C for Bobby Shaftoe and the
     like. I could
     find an argument that F nat. would have been a more useful 7th key
     on a short
     chanter than d#, but that's not the way things went.
     Knowing that Pauline C and possibly others had drone extensions to
     assist with
     altering drones to "non-standard" keys, and Andy M has
     interchangeable drone parts
     to achieve something similar, I elected to make a five drone "F" set
     with two
     tuning beads on the A drone so I could reach C, and made an
     extension for the big D
     to drop it to C, which allows a 3 drone tuning of C - G - C, gives a
     phenomenal
     "ghostly 3rd" E when it's working properly, and allowed me to
     establish for myself
     that Clough's Bobby Shaftoe set was well worth the exploring.
     Yes you need F natural keys but they're both within the "compass" of
     the 7 key
     chanter so are not outlandish to handle, and yes it takes a bit more
     effort than G,
     but I think it sounds really good.
     My twopennorth
     Julia
     To get on or off this list see list information at
     [3]http://www.cs.dartmouth.edu/~wbc/lute-admin/index.html

   --

References

   1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OaYiveqihsc&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL
   2. mailto:julia....@nspipes.co.uk
   3. http://www.cs.dartmouth.edu/~wbc/lute-admin/index.html

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