"Pìoban Suas (Pipes Up)!" - Why do they Stir our Souls so?

Updated: Jul 9




Bagpipes touch the souls of everyone that hears them. They are irresistible. They make the blood boil. They sooth us when a loved one passes. We cannot escape a visceral reaction.


The combination of primal sounds, evocative rituals, and an uncanny ability to connect with humans has made the bagpipe unique. It was used to drive men to battle, funerals, weddings and other events steeped in gravitas.

Here is an example from the and David E Olsen:

But the most emotional response Olson has ever witnessed during the four decades he played the instrument occurred on Nov. 11, 2001 - two months after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

During a recent telephone interview from his Rostraver Township home, Olson vividly described the intense emotion that overwhelmed him and those gathered at Ground Zero as he played his bagpipes.

When Olson arrived at Ground Zero at about 8 a.m. on a Sunday, he had visions of playing a solo performance with no one around to watch or hear him play his music. He simply wanted to play "Amazing Grace" as a tribute to the thousands of people who lost their lives on that tragic day.

But Olson soon realized that it would not be a solo performance because "New York City never sleeps."

As he began to play his bagpipes, Olson said he was touched as he saw tears pouring down the face of a burly New York City cop.

I can relate with David.

There are times when I feel my entire emotional universe come flooding out as soon as the first note begins.

It is like a hug from Mom for me.

Having a sad day, pipe.

Want to fight the world, pipe.

Want to increase your joy, pipe.

Want to stop people in their tracks, pipe.