Preston has been playing traditional Irish dance music on the uilleann pipes (pronounced ‘ill-yun’) for over 20 years. The uilleann pipes are Ireland’s national bagpipe and differ from their more famous Scottish cousin in that they are a bit quieter, lower-pitched, and have a much broader musical range. Where the Scottish bagpipe is intended for marching into battle the Irish bagpipe is intended for enjoying communal dancing and maybe a pint or two. Due to their larger musical range and more nuanced tonality, the uilleann pipes enjoy a resplendent repertoire as well as a plethora of playing styles in contrast to the militarized homogeneity of the Scottish piping tradition. Preston’s focus has been on the older pre-famine Irish piping canon (1760’s-1850’s) as well as fiddle music from Cork, Kerry, Clare, Belfast, Sligo, and Fermanagh.
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