John Wilson (Principal Instructor)
George Murdoch (Bass & Tenor)
Drum Majors' course will be included if a sufficient level of interest is expressed.
John Wilson is a native of Campbeltown, Argyllshire and comes from a long line of family pipers in that area. He was originally taught by his father Pipe-Major William Wilson but studied piobaireachd under Pipe-Major Donald MacLeod for 25 years.
He started competing at the age of 8years and won all juvenile events in Scotland several times over in the years following. In 1965 he turned to professional piping and won the Argyllshire Gathering Medal for the senior Strathspey & Reel competition at 15 years of age. In 1968 he won the Gold Medal at the Northern Meetings at his first attempt aged 18 years. From there on he won virtually every major solo award including the Gold Medals at Oban and Inverness plus the senior Piobaireachd and Former Winners' March, Strathspey & Reel events at both meetings.
He joined the Police in 1970 and was Pipe Sgt of the Strathclyde Police Pipe Band during their halcion period of major championship victories which included 6 consecutive World Championship wins. In total he has won 12 World Pipe Band Championships with Strathclyde Police Pipe Band.
In professional terms he was promoted through the ranks of the Police Service from Beat Constable to Chief Superintendent. He has held many senior operational posts within the Force and has been involved in many major operational incidents and enquiries including the Lockerbie Air Crash. In 1998 he was appointed to the rank of Commander in one of Strathclyde's "Jumbo" Police Divisions - Glasgow Central - one of the most challenging Police posts in the UK.
John retired from the Police in 2003 and is now a senior adjudicator on the joint approved list for solo piping and the RSPBA panel for pipe bands and also teaches at home and abroad.
Chris started playing at 6 years old. He was initially taught at Torphichen and Bathgate Novice Juvenile Pipe Band. He received solo tuition from Pipe Major John Matheson BEM from the age of 8, then had lessons from Andrew Wright for Piobaireachd and now receives lessons from John Wilson.
Chris holds the PDQB level 6 and Senior Teachers certificates and is an assessor for the SQA/PDQB examination board.
Past successes in solo piping include winning the Bratach Gorm, J. B. Robertson Rose Bowl and the Overall Champion Piper at the Scottish Piping Society of London in 2007, 1st in the Former Winners MSR at the Argyllshire Gathering and also the A grade MSR at the Northern Meeting in 2001. 1st in the PM Donald Macleod Memorial MSR, runner up twice in the Former Winners MSR at the Northern Meeting. He has been the overall champion in 2002/03 at the Cowal Highland Gathering; in 2003 he won the Gold Medal at the Northern Meeting.
Previous bands include, Torphichen and Bathgate Pipe Band – Novice and Grade 2, Seafield and District Pipe Band – Grade 3, Coalburn I.O.R Pipe Band – Grade 3, Eden Pipe Band – Grade 1, Pipe Sergeant of Dumbarton and District – Grade 2 and Pipe Major of the David Urquart Travel Pipes and Drums – Grade 1.
Craig has played in Grade 1 now for a total of 15 years after joining Shotts & Dykehead at the age of 15. He has since played with Dysart & Dundonald, The Clan Gregor Society and was Pipe Major of Clydebank Pipe Band coming runners up in the Grade 3A Scottish, European, Cowal and World Pipe Band Championships in 2008 who were promoted to Grade 2 after his first year in charge. He then returned to play with the House of Edgar Shotts & Dykehead Pipe Band, which would turn out to be Robert Mathieson’s final year as Pipe Major of the band. He now plays with the 2010 World Pipe Band Champions, St Laurence O’Toole Pipe Band and is also a member of the world famous Red Hot Chilli Pipers.
Craig travels in demand all over the world entertaining audiences and leaving them amazed at how much goes into a set of bagpipes behind the scenes with his “Understand & Appreciate Your Bagpipes” lecture that takes you on a journey back to the first African Blackwood seeds being planted in Tanzania, through to the harvesting and manufacturing stage.
Some of Craig’s notable performances out with the competition circuit have been playing on the BBC Hogmanay Live Show, Live on Blue Peter, finale piper on the main stage at T in the Park, playing at the Ryder Cup Gala Concert in the SSE Hydro plus opening the 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles before the teams are presented on stage and recording soundtracks for the Disney Pixar’s movie ‘Brave’ & DreamWorks ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2’.
Allan Craig is currently the Leading Drummer with the Grade 2 Lomond & Clyde Pipe Band. During his tenure with the band, he has won every major drumming title in Grade 2; incl. The World Championship and Champion of Champions.
Allan started playing drums in Knightswood Juvenile Pipe Band at the age of 13. During his pipe band career he has played under various notable Leading Drummers incl. Joe Noble (Babcock Renfrew Grade 1); Jim Kilpatrick (Polkemmet/Shotts Grade 1); and John Scullion (Scottish Power with Grade 1). He has also been Leading drummer with many other bands incl. 100 Pipers Whisky (Grade 2) in which he won both the band and World Drumming Championships and Glasgow Skye (Grade 1).
He has also been prolific in the Solo circuit in both Juvenile and Adult sections and has won the West of Scotland Championship and has appeared in the World Solo final in numerous occasions; with a 3 place being his highest placed position.
This success has carried over into teaching of the snare drum which he has been doing for over 25 years and has included achievements such as Dumbarton & Dist. Novice Juvenile winning a World Drumming Championship and Johnstone Novice Juvenile coming 2nd in the World.
He has taught all over Europe and the east coast of the United States
He is currently the principle drumming instructor for:
1. Strathendrick Pipe Band (4b)
2. The Pipes & Drums of Basle from Switzerland (4b)
3. Lionacleit School Pipe Band from Benbecula (Nov. Juv)
4. Corrivalum Pipe Band Holland (3b)
Most recently, he has started to teach the Scotch Watch Pipe & Drums from Switzerland (4b) and Liberty High School (Novice Juvenile), from Pennsylvania, USA.
Allan holds both the Level 6 SQA and the newly created Pipe Band Studies 1 certificates in Pipe Band Drumming. He has also been recently appointed as fully qualified RSPBA Drumming Adjudicator.
His passion for drumming also extends onto the drum kit which he also teaches and has been involved in bands over the years with a wide range of musical genres incl. progressive rock, pop, jazz and funk.
Drum Major Billy Jordan
Drum Major William Jordan is the Drum Major of Scottish Power Pipe Band. He is one of the most experienced Drum majors in the world today, Billy Started with Dumbarton & District Pipe band at a young age as a drummer.
Following this he joined the 1st Bn Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders, as a side drummer and also played tenor and bass drum. He completed his drumming courses at the Army School of Piping and Drumming, and completed and passed RSPBA drumming exams.
He then completed his Drum Majors Certificate which he passed with distinction. After the completion of his military courses and drumming exams, he was appointed Drum Major of The 1st Bn Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders.
Drum Major Jordan was the 1st Drum Major to lead the Edinburgh Military Tattoo Abroad in New Zealand in 2000. This was one of the highlights of his career along with playing for Her Majesty The Queen and the royal family several times during his career.
A champion Drum Major and a major finalist in all Scottish, British, European, World and Cowal championships. His pupils have taken all the major championships. Currently, Billy offers seminars in many countries, for drum majors of all levels from the new drum major to the champion drum major, Also offered is band drill and dress lessons.