Mesa Caledonian Pipe Band

Welcome to week two of my band profiles! This week we will be taking a look at the band I played in while I was in college, the Mesa Caledonian Pipe Band. This band hails from Arizona at Grade 3, under the excellent guidance of Chris Hossack. They also put up with quite a lot from my brother and I, who had a habit of getting stranded in the middle of Californian cities on band trips.


 

Mesa Caledonian Pipe Band

Location: Mesa, AZ, U.S.A.

Founded: 1980

Tartan: Ancient Bruce of Kinnaird

Member: April 2007- June 2012

Pipe Majors:

  • Chris Hossack

Drum Sergeants:

  • David Hossack

Grade: III

My brother and I were the pair in the infamous Burbank story which has become immortalized in the mythos of the Mesa Caledonian Pipe Band. That, however, is as story for another time.

I played with Mesa for a five-year period at the end of high school and through college, before I moved to Indiana. However, I was not very active from 2010 through 2012. Even though I was only really active for three seasons with the band, I met a lot of great people there, and quite a few friends. This was the first band I played with which had two grade levels (from the time I started with them until around 2011/2012, the band had Grade IV and Grade III competition units), and was the first adult band I played in. I learned a lot from the experience, and had some interesting band trips.

Band trips with Mesa, for whatever reason, never went smoothly for me. One time a hotel lost my reservation, and another time – in Burbank – my brother and I had a mix-up at Bob Hope Airport on the way to Oakland.

The band was quite supportive of me during my early years in college – they helped provide food that was not the school meal plans at my dorm, and provided me with a new pipe bag. For the first year and a half of school, I rode down with another Mesa player from Flagstaff to Mesa every weekend (eventually, every other weekend). I only really pulled back because school was getting quite demanding, and I didn’t have much opportunity to practice in Flagstaff.

Notable Band Trips I went on included:

  • September 2009: Pleasanton Highland Games, Pleasanton, California

The band traveled to Scotland in the summer of 2007, but I did not attend this trip, having joined only a few months prior.

My brother continued with Mesa well after I did, since he remained in Arizona for a few years longer than I did.