Why I Left Competitive Piping


I have met so many of you; shook your hands; exchanged glances at the line (or the beer tent); walked past as the other was competing in solos...

But no longer. I have the memories; a fat stack of judges sheets and a box full of trophies and medals; the echoes of praise and criticism and camaraderie. Fellow bandsmen and women; judges; band parents, grandparents, children, grandchildren; you are a truly massive family with a common love for all things Highland. I'll visit, but I do have to leave.

Pipe Band,

As big a family as we are, I needed to see the world; I wanted to experience different music scenes, subcultures, and different people. I grew up in Abbotsford, a city known too well for its conservative nature. I felt like I was being held back from rounding myself out as a person if I didn't get some more life experience, and the competitive piping and drumming scene takes us SO much time. To be in it is to be in little else. Band practices twice a week; private lessons; 6-8 weekends of your summer plus indoor gatherings in the off season; not to mention all the fundraisers and parades and gigs! Robby Burns, Remembrance Day, St. Patrick's, and more.

I found a lot of beautiful things in the time I have spent away, but don't worry! I did not go alone. I brought my life's passion, the bagpipes, with me. They have help me get to know some incredible people and collaborate on some projects that I can't wait to show you. I've been doing a lot of learning as well. The world of electronic music is a fascinating one that takes no commitment to enjoy, but tons of commitment to excel in as an artist. 

Let me show you some of the places I've been; the people I've met; the music I've heard; and the sounds that I have created. There is an incredible potential for combining Highland instruments with modern sounds and technology. This generation has an incredible opportunity to reach more people musically than ever before. You do not have to reach outside of your comfort zone, your routine, your practice schedule; your regimented competitive circuit.

I've done it for you. And I'm coming back with so much to share.


Stay beautiful

Change beautifully



Callum Donald Mathers


Celtic Dubstep Music

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1 comment

  • Hi Callum:
    just read your story/history, and wish you good luck in your endeavours.

    • tom skinner