Scottish Highland Bagpipes for the iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad

BlowPipes Icon

BlowPipes is now available on the iTunes App Store

BlowPipes is the best-sounding and easiest-to-play set of mouth-blown Scottish Highland Bagpipes available for the iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad.

The drone and chanter sounds are provided by ePipes in Glasgow, Scotland, and are high quality per-note studio recordings of a world-class set of Great Highland Bagpipes.

Play a melody on the chanter by touching the holes while blowing into the microphone on your device or wired headset.

Touch the drone puck image to switch the drones on and off.

Touch the 'i' icon at the bottom center to bring up the settings page. Here you can adjust the blowing sensitivity as well as the balance between the drones and chanter.

You may also select between Top (iPod Touch 4G, iPad) or Bottom (iPhone) microphone location for your device.

This app currently requires a headset with a microphone to be used on the 2nd Generation iPod Touch or later. No headset is required for iPhone (all models) or iPad.

To play the chanter without blowing, just set the microphone location selector on the settings page to Off. Play the notes by just touching the chanter holes. In this mode, once you touch a hole, the chanter plays continuously just like a real Scottish Highland chanter. To stop the chanter playing, start and stop the drones.

The Flip switch on the settings page toggles between high/low and low/high note order on the chanter.

On the settings page, touch the ePipes logo to visit their website, or touch the TradLessons logo to learn more about my other music apps.

Please click on the logo below to learn more about ePipes and their fine virtual piping instruments and controllers:

Main screen, drones off


Drones on, playing a note


Touch the 'i' icon to bring up the settings page


Demonstration video:

Tips and Techniques:

There are two sets of volume controls on your device, the overall volume control using the hardware buttons, and the drone/chanter balance controls on the back page of the app.

This allows optimal volume for a wide variety of uses and situations from live play, to use with headphones or plugged into an external amplifier.

If you experience any distortion or overloading, first try setting the app volume to mid-range, then increase the device volume as required.

You can also slide between holes.

For some real fun, run the output of your iPhone or iPod Touch through an external amplifier or outboard effects. I use a Roland Cube-ST portable amp that has both reverb and chorus effects, the end result is quite amazing.

Known issues:

This app currently requires a headset with a microphone to be used on the 2nd Generation iPod Touch or later. No headset is required for iPhone (all models) or iPad.

Free Online Highland Piping Instruction and Resources:

Pipe Major William Robertson has an extensive set of free online Highland bagpipes lessons.

Calvert County Fire & EMS Pipes and Drums in Maryland has many tunes written out on their site.

City of Winchester Pipes and Drums in Virginia has a very nice collection of tunes in standard notation as .bmp images.

The Fort Collins Pipe Band has many tunes online, also some solo marching drum recordings.

There is a wealth of information online at Bob Dunsire Bagpipe Forums.

Future Plans:

I am very interested in any suggestions for features or improvements to the apps for future updates, please drop me an email anytime with your ideas!

More Apps to Enjoy:

Visit AppCordions


For more information, please contact Michael Eskin or visit the AppCordions website:

Visit AppCordions

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