Bagpiper

Rex Benson

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About Rex

Bagpiper
Edinburgh
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8 years of experience playing at weddings, events, conferences etc. Offering a tailored service or your event. Reliable, traditional music

Having been playing the Highland Bagpipes for 10 years, performing with two bands based in Edinburgh and London as well as the 'Paris Pipe Band', I have developed a great passion for the instrument. During this time I have had the privilege of being taught by some of the UK's most prestigious pipers, including the ex. and current personal pipers for Her Majesty the Queen. When I'm not performing at events, I busk and have done so during the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, La Fête de la Musique (Paris), Central London and during the recent Royal Wedding . As well as the bagpipes I play the Scottish Smallpipes (video in media section), a less iconic instrument but perfect for more relaxed indoor events with their mellow sound. I have a varied repertoire suitable for a mixture of occasions as well as classic, traditional Scottish tunes.

Performance details
I can perform outdoors
I have a car I can use to travel to gigs
I can perform while walking around a venue
Musicianship
Genres:
Scottish music, Traditional Scottish folk, Marching
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Instruments:
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Event types:
Wedding, Wedding proposal, Funeral / Memorial service, Church service, Hotel / Restaurant event, Bar / Club / Venue event, Private event, Corporate event, Charity event, Concert, Recording session, Theatre / Show, Cruise, Burns night, Birthday party, Christmas party, New Year's Eve
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Other skills:
Fluent sight-reader, Instrumental teaching, Community music worker
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Song list

REPERTOIRE:
Traditional favourites for events:
- Amazing Grace (Traditional - 3/4 Air)
- Highland Cathedral (Michael Korbe - 4/4 Slow Air)
- The Black Bear (Traditional -2/4 March)
- Scotland the Brave (Traditional - 4/4 March)
- Flower of Scotland (Roy Williamson - 6/8 March)
- The Flowers of The Forest (Traditional - Lament)
- Auld Lang Syne (Robert Burns - 4/4 March)
- Happy Birthday
- Here comes the bride
Marches:
- Highland Wedding
- The brown haired Maiden
- Teribus
- Corriechoillie's
- The High road to Gairloch
- Mairi's WeddingTraditional
- The Barren Rocks of Aden
- The Australian LadiesW.Fergusson
- The Detroit HighlandersTraditional
- The Battle of the Somme
- The Rowan Tree
- Bonnie Galloway
- Wings
- The High Drive
- Cullen Bay
- The Steamboat
- Kenmure's
- John D Burgess
- Pibroch of Donuil Dubh
- The Heights of Dargai
Retreats:
- The Green Hills of Tyrol
- The Battles O'er
- I See Mull
- The Kilworth Hills
- Mary Grant
- Row Me Home To Islay
Slow Airs:
- Mist Covered Mountains
- Leaving Barra
- The Dark Island
- Far Over The Sea
Reels:
- Shetland Reel
- Kesley's Wee Reel
- Sleepy Maggie
Strathspeys:
- O'er The Bows To Bllindalloch
- Highland Fling
Hornpipes:
The Clumsy Lover
Callum Campbell's Caprice
Itchy Fingers
Jigs:
- The Sea-gull
- Paddy's Leather Breaches
- The Biscuit (for Mallcom M'Vittie)
- Glasgow City Police Pipers
- Jack's Jig
- The Banjo Breakdown
- Steam Train to Mallaig
- The Colonel-In-Chief's Jig
Contemporary film and song:
- The Gael (Last of the Mohicans)
- Clocks (Coldplay)
- Wombles of Wimbledon
Customer questions

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

I will always do my best to be flexible and help ensure your event runs as smoothly as possible. If timings change slightly just let me know and usually this will be absolutely fine. If the event is on a peak day (Burns or NYE for example) this might be more difficult due to tight bookings, and I if I cannot adapt I will endeavour to find you another piper!

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

N/A

How much time do you need to set up?

This is a very quick process and will take about 2 minutes in a separate room (don't worry if there isn't one available, I can always go outside :)

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

Of course! I am happy to take tune requests beforehand and on the day. If the tune isn't on my song list, just let me know and I will make sure to learn it for the event.

Do you bring all the equipment you need to perform?

Yes, absolutely! I bring everything needed for the performance.

Can you learn specific pieces before the event?

The song list doesn't include everything I can play, so the chances are I may already know the piece. However if I don't, I'll make sure to learn it/them before the event. Just let me know beforehand. There is no extra cost for this service

What do your clients love most about your performances?

There is no hassle and getting set up and sorted is quick and easy. Being able to take tune requests has always been a bonus but simply having the bagpipes at an event can make it stand out as it resonates with many guests.

Which venues have you performed at in the past?

Mostly private events across the UK in hired venues from marquees to pubs to museums to castles. Some stand out ones have been Windsor castle during the royal wedding, St. James' Palace. The most amazing however has been 'Neidpath Castle'!

Which artists have you been most influenced by?

Gordon Duncan

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

Hmmm... this would be tied between a performance for a United Nations meeting in Scotland between UN delegates, playing for Harry and Meghan's royal wedding and piping for a ceremony in St. James' Palace.

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)£60
Up to 1 hour£165
Up to 2 hours£210
Up to 3 hours£250

Reviews

Booked 8 times through Encore!

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5 verified reviews
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From Encore customers:

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Mandy S, 9 months ago

Fabulous - great talent

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Dani P, 9 months ago

Rex was very professional & friendly! Remained calm even with a last minute change to the proceedings. Would highly recommend!

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Jane A, 9 months ago

Rex was very professional, very flexible, and a fantastic musicians. 10/10 would Burns with him again

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Anna C, 1 year ago

excellent addition to our burns night party

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From other customers:

Tasha L, 3 years ago

Thank you so much for playing last night! It really was the highlight of our evening and the guests loved it.

Mary U, 2 years ago

Hi Rex, I just want to thank you for playing so fantastically at our Hogmanay party and especially for taking my husband's requests! I really hope you will play for us again!