John McShane

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(5.0)Read all 14 reviews
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About John

John is the most experienced full time professional bagpiper, based in Cardiff. Ex Scots Guards Association. Full Public Liability Insurance

Over 40 years of piping experience. He currently plays with a number of International bagpipe and celtic bands. He was previously a member of the Scots Guards Association Pipe Band, University of Bedfordshire Pipe Band and the Welsh Piping Society. John has many high profile clients including the Welsh Rugby Union, Cardiff Blues, Cardiff Devils and the Welsh College of Music and Drama. He tours Germany and Switzerland with the widely acclaimed Celtic Rock Band Aceltica and is regularly booked to perform at the world renowned Interceltique Festival in Lorient, France.

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5 out of 5
12 verified reviews
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John's Reviews

From Encore customers:

Stuart W
2 months ago
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5 out of 5

John played at my father’s funeral service and graveside on Friday and it was very special. He’s a very talented piper and absolute professional. John communicated with the funeral director to ensure that everything went to plan and was how we wanted it. Hearing John play Amazing Grace at the graveside was wonderful and such a fitting tribute to my father. Everyone commented on how good John was. I would definitely recommend. Thank you John.

Stuart W
2 months ago
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5 out of 5

Very good

Elizabeth E
11 months ago
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5 out of 5

John was absolutely amazing made my dad's funeral the best send off ever I would highly recommend him for any event Liz

Paul T
1 year ago
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5 out of 5

It was a fabulous occasion and John’s contribution outstanding and when future situations arise, I will have no hesitation making contact with him again

Read all 8 reviews

From other customers:

Steve O
5 years ago, for a Funeral / Memorial service in Treherbert Road
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5 out of 5

We used John for my wife's late mother's funeral, he is very professional and a magical touch to what is always a very sad occasion, but to hear John play the pipes kinda makes things a little easier , we would definitely recommend John for any occasion you require him for, he can learn to play any song you require, very professional and punctual. thank you so much John very much appreciated. Steve, Heidi and Erra

Mark B
5 years ago, for a Christmas party in Westgate St
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5 out of 5

John played at our Greedy Boys Festive lunch on the 7th December 2018 in the Cardiff County Club. He piped in the main course and then played a lament to absent members which was hugely enjoyed and appreciated by all present. John has by popular request been asked to become a permanent fixture at future events. His professionalism, experience and authenticity were the subject of very positive feedback from all present.

Read all 6 reviews
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10 gigs
Experienced: 10 bookings through Encore
Saved the day!
Booked for an Encore gig with less than 24 hours’ notice
7th Anniversary
This act has been working with Encore for over 7 years

John's Song list

Most requested funeral tunes:
- Calon Lan
- Myfanwy
- Bread of Heaven
- Land of my Fathers (Welsh Amthem)
- Men of Harlech
- Fields of Athenry
- The Soilder's Song
- Ireland's Call
- The Dawning of the Day
- The Girl from Dungannon
- The Cliffs of Doneen
- Boolavougue
- Danny Boy
- Amazing Grace
- Flower of Scotland
- The Flowers of the Forest
- The Dark Island
- Highland Cathedral
- Westering Home
- Go Lassie Go
- The Skye Boat Song
- The Mist Covered Mountains
- My Home
- The Hills of Argyle
- The Mingulay Boat Song
- Going Home
- The Water's Wide
Other popular tunes:
-Scotland the Brave
-Game of Thrones
-Atholl Highlanders
-Glasgow Police Pipers
-500 miles
-Auld Lang Syne
-Irish Washerwoman
-Paddy's leather breeches
-Jig of Slurs
-Loch Lomond
-Hey Jude
-Itchy fingers
-Clumsey lover
-Sandy's new chanter
-Clocks (Cold Play)
-I'm a Believer (Monkees)
-Wooden Heart
-Banjo Breakdown
300+ more (please ask)

John's Prices

Note: prices may vary based on travel distance. For an exact quote, click “Check availability”.

Standard Prices
Performance durationPrice
Short performance (up to 15 min)£180
Up to 1 hour£190
Up to 2 hours£250
Up to 3 hours£300
Customer questions

What do your clients love most about your performances?

My ability to select sets to fit the occasion.

Which venues have you performed at in the past?

Red Square, Moscow Arena Birmingham Horse Guards Parade, London Principality Stadium, Cardiff Cardiff Arms Park, Rugby Cardiff Devil's, Ice Hockey The Tram Shed, Cardiff The Winter Palace, St Petersburg The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama Concert halls and arenas throughout Germany Lorient Interceltique Festival, Brittany, France

Which artists have you been most influenced by?

Red Hot Chilli Pipers Gordan Duncan

What is the most high profile gig you've performed?

Lorient Interceltique festival, Brittany, France and International Military Tattoo, Red Square, Moscow

What if my timings change after I've booked you?

I will always endeavour to be flexible.

Can you provide an iPod/DJ service before and between your sets?

Not at the moment sorry.

How much time do you need to set up?

15 minutes is adequate as I will "tune up" at home prior to travelling to the event.

Can I pick the pieces you play from the set list?

Yes, absolutely. I'm also able to advice on what tunes work best for different types of events.

Do you bring all the equipment you need to perform?


Can you learn specific pieces before the event?

If the tune is not in my song list and it fits on bagpipes then I can normally learn the tune with a bit of notice.
Folk, Pop, Rock, Christmas, Military, Traditional church music, Ceillidh, Folk rock, Irish rock, Traditional Irish folk, Traditional Scottish folk, Marching, World music, Scottish music
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Event types:
Wedding, Funeral / Memorial service, Hotel / Restaurant event, Bar / Club / Venue event, Private event, Corporate event, Charity event, Cruise, Burns night, Birthday party, Christmas party, New Year's Eve
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Other skills:
Instrumental teaching
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