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Matthew McRae

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About Matthew

With 25 years' of experience as a professional bagpiper, Matthew is the perfect addition to make your day special and distinct to any other!
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Services offered:- Weddings, Corporate, Media, Birthdays, Funerals, Burns' Suppers and Other Events of your choosing. Matthew McRae has been playing the Great Highland Bagpipes since he was 10 years old and through-out his piping career he has played as an individual solo performer at multiple events across a wide range of platforms. He has performed at prestigious venues such as the Royal Albert Hall, Hampton Court Palace, The Intercontinental in Mayfair (Ldn), Saxon Hall, Birkbeck University, Sony Pictures and plays regularly on the Great British Pullman steam train (otherwise known as the 'Orient Express'). Furthermore, Matthew has played for weddings at Horsley Towers, Horsted Place, Leeds Castle, Saddlers Hall, and Burns’ suppers for Panasonic, Mecca Bingo, Grosvenor Casino and Howling Hops Brewery etc. Matthew is an accomplished skilled professional, highly versatile and flexible in his approach. He always works with his clients to ensure that every performance delivers the right impact for the intended audience. Media:- Matthew has appeared on a range of well-known TV and Radio programmes, from Chris Evans’ Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2 and Absolute Radio, to Made in Chelsea and The Last Leg: Correspondents. He has also featured as a session musician with Right Said Fred and for Walkers Crisps, and has performed with The Chieftains, and the international bestselling classical group, Il Divo. Corporate:- Matthew has worked with a range of leading corporations including Channel 4, BBC One, BBC Radio 2, Absolute Radio, Sony, RadioTimes, Burberry, Walkers, Panasonic, Flybe, Belmond, Marie Curie and many more. Band Involvement:- Matthew has always been closely affiliated with the pipe band fraternity playing with a total of three bands to-date. The first was in 1995 called the Southend Scottish Pipe Band, then after disbanding in 2002 Matthew joined the Sutherland Pipes & Drums based in Corringham, where he has played in many festivals, fetes, military tattoos, remembrance parades and Christmas celebrations. Deciding to progress his piping onto the next level, in 2012 Matthew joined the Essex Caledonian Pipe Band. Being a competition band, Matthew has been competing up and down the country, and internationally since, including the quartets, mini bands and Jim McGuinn memorial contest in Broxbourne, the local Scotland in Colchester Competition, the Cowal Highland Gathering in Dunoon and the Scottish Weekend Competition in Belgium. Past and present results across all competitions have been very positive, picking up 1st, 2nd or 3rd place honours.

Performance details
I can perform outdoors
I have a car I can use to travel to gigs
I can perform with backing tracks
I can perform while walking around a venue
Matthew on Instagram
Encore awards
3rd Encoreversary
Saved the day!
Booked for 10 Encore gigs!
Classical, Ceillidh, Folk, Irish rock, Traditional Scottish folk, Traditional Irish folk, Folk rock, Medieval music, Film / TV music, Fanfare, World music, Scottish music, Alternative rock, Christmas, Military, Traditional church music
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Event types:
Wedding, Wedding proposal, Funeral / Memorial service, Church service, Hotel / Restaurant event, Private event, Corporate event, Charity event, Recording session, Theatre / Show, Burns night, Birthday party, Christmas party, New Year's Eve
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Other skills:
Composer, Arranger, Instrumental teaching
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Song list

Highland Cathedral
Maries Wedding
Highland Wedding
Angus Mackinnon
Highland Laddie
Scotland the brave
Cock of the North (Aunty Mary had a Canary)
Laras Theme
Skye Boat Song (Waltz)
Major May
Major Bobby
Liberton Polka
Craigs of Tumbledown Mountain
Bonny Galloway
Badge of Scotland
The Wedding March
I am Sailing
Man’s a Man For a’ That
Loch Lomond
Stop Your Tickling Jock
Mason’s Apron
Flower of the Scotland
Amazing Grace
Flowers of the Forest
Wild Mountain Thyme
Abide With Me
Danny Boy
You’ll Never Walk Alone
Hector the Hero
Dark Isle
Going Home
Mist Covered Mountains
Bells of Dunblane
Mull of Kyntyre
Auld Lang Syng
Morag of Dunvegan
Highland Cradle Song
Loch Ranoch
Can Can
Gold Ring
The Clumsy Lover
Easy Club
The Pumpkin’s Fancy
The Banjo Breakdown
Paddys Leather breaches
The Man From Skye
The Carnival Reel
Calypso Piper
The Big Burl
Cabar Feidh
Black Bear
Glasgow City Police Pipers
Thin Lizzy – Whisky in the Jar
George Harrison – Here Comes the Sun
AC/DC – It’s a Long Way to the Top if you Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll
Oasis – She’s Electric
Blur – Tender
The Proclaimers – Walk 500 Miles
Pulp – Disco 2000
Rod Stewart – I Am Sailing
Happy Mondays – Step On
Faithless – Insomnia
Avicii – Wake Me Up
A Guy Called Gerald – Voodoo Ray
Jurassic Park
Harry Potter
Star Wars
Happy Birthday


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From Encore customers:

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Geraldine H, 7 months ago

Matthew piped my Uncle's hearse into the Crematorium which was a wonderful sight. He was very helpful with all the arrangements and liaised with the Undertakers. I'd definitely recommend him.

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Colin S, 1 year ago

He was absolutely brilliant. Would highly recommend

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Kathleen G, 1 year ago

Matthew played at my son's wedding on 1 August 2019 at The Tythe Barn Bicester. He was punctual and his playlist was just what we had asked for. I would recommend Matthew for your wedding or any other event requiring bagpipes. A big thank you Matt for your contribution to what was a truly magical day

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Greg D, 2 years ago

Matthew was excellent. Prior to the event he would always reply quickly to messages. During the event he was there right on time and on schedule. He was very talented and everyone enjoyed hearing his music.

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From other customers:

London W, 4 years ago

We were absolutely thrilled that we chose Matthew as our bagpiper for our wedding in London in November. We wanted to add a Scottish touch to the day, and couldn't have asked for more! His playing was excellent, and he was extremely friendly and professional and happy to accommodate our requests for where and when to play. Lots of the wedding guests said their highlight of the day was being piped along Cheapside - it created a brilliant atmosphere, and we would highly recommend him!

London E, 5 years ago

Matthew, thank you for your intrepid playing - again much enjoyed and commented on positively by many of the VIP guests you welcomed so joyfully, and so early in the morning

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