I’ve decided to start a new tradition this year for this little Las Vegas photography blog. I get to meet so many interesting people as a photographer so I’m going to be featuring local businesses, interesting or distinguished people, movers/shakers, etc. through short interviews. I’m so excited to be an interviewer! Just try to imagine Jay Leno’s voice asking the questions. 🙂
For my first interview, I chose something you don’t see everyday; a bagpiping band! Introducing, the DESERT SKYE PIPES AND DRUMS.
Tell a little bit about your band…
Desert Skye Pipes & Drums is a local pipe band, with headquarters right here in
Las Vegas and is the only civilian pipe band in Southern Nevada. At the present
time we have a membership of 18 Pipers and 12 Drummers.
Desert Skye Pipes & Drums is led by Pipe Major Andrew Fusco and Drum
Sergeant Reggie Rader.
What inspired the band to be created?
Desert Skye Pipes & Drums was formed in 1999 by Danny Packer, who served
as the first Pipe Major, with the goal of promoting Celtic culture throughout
Southern Nevada through the performance of traditional Scottish Highland music.
From that time, we have remained the premiere pipe band in Southern Nevada.
Our main function is to promote Celtic culture, but we are much more than that!
We are a competition band, a performance and entertainment band, a teaching
organization and a cultural group.
Desert Skye proudly wears the official Nevada State Tartan, which was designed
by one of our original members.
What do you feel is the biggest appeal of your group and your music?
The biggest appeal is definitely the overpowering sound of the band produced by
one of the most exciting musical instruments on earth, the Great Highland
Bagpipe. When you combine the Bagpipes with the Scottish drums, you have a
sound that is unequaled anywhere! People love the sound of a Scottish Pipe
Band. Also, seeing the band dressed in the traditional kilt evokes memories of
the romantic history of Scotland as well as memories of the many years of the
Scottish wars fighting for independence.
As part of the band’s goal to promote Scottish music and show support for the
community of Las Vegas, the band plays at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, the
Veteran’s Day Parade and the Helldorado Parade as well as other community
events put on by the St. Andrew’s Society of Southern Nevada, the Las Vegas
Celtic Society and the Las Vegas Highland Dance Association. The band
routinely appears on stage, performing with the Sharon Lynn Academy of Irish
Dance. We are proud to be able to perform with pipers and drummers from the
local fire and police departments on special occasions.
Have anything special planned for 2013?
The goal of the band for the coming year is to grow in number of members, as
well as to raise our performances to an even higher level of musical excellence.
We plan to attend at least four different Highland Games throughout the West to
perform with other pipe band and to enter the pipe band competitions. Based on
last years performances in those band competitions, we expect this year, to place
first or second in every competition.
Desert Skye Pipes & Drums will once again be the host band for the Las Vegas
Celtic Gathering and Highland Games, as we have been for the past five years.
Also, we have several classes planned for those interested in learning to play the
Great Highland Bagpipe or Scottish Drums. We teach beginners even if they
have no music experience what so ever and we have a place in the band for all
skill levels. If you are interested in learning the Great Highland Bagpipe or
Highland Drums, give us a call or visit our website at www.desertskye.org.
If you have any questions or would like to get pricing information for hiring the full
band or solo piper to play at your function, please call us at:
Pipe Major Andrew Fusco 702-518-7473
Band Director Van W. Frazier 702-994-5314
Desert Skye Pipes & Drums…Keeping Celtic pride alive in the Silver State
A HUGE thank you to the Desert Skye Pipes and Drums for taking the time to answer a few questions for us. Don’t forget to check out their website: www.desertskye.org