Desmond O’Boyle plays the Great Highland Bagpipe to kick off FoCoMX 10 in Old Town Square! Performing at 3:30 and 5:00pm on Friday.
I was inspired to start playing when I was in 3rd grade in Grand Junction when a piper came and played at my school on St. Patrick’s Day. Two years later, I found a local teacher in Fruita, Hugh Thackaberry, and I took lessons for about 3 years. Later, I discovered the original piper that played at my school, named Ken Miller, lived close to me, and as he was getting on in years, he sold his set of pipes to me as I worked for him after school, in middle school for two years. When he passed, I played HIS pipes at HIS funeral. I’m still playing that set today, 1951 Laurie’s with ivory mounts.
I played for years in the Thunder Mountain Pipe band in Grand Junction, now defunct. During that time, we were able to purchase matching kilts featuring the State of Colorado Tartan.
I moved to Oregon when I was 22 in 2006, then joined the Eugene Highlanders. I played with them for ten years, eventually serving as Pipe Major firing two of those years.
I moved back to Colorado in 2016, and after moving to Greeley to work at KUNC, I joined Michael Collins Pipes and Drums. Last year, the band competed across the state and in New Mexico, and ended the season as one of the top Grade IV bands in the Western United States Pipe Band Association.
I have also competed in solo competitions for years, although I am currently taking a break from that scene. I have won a handful of medals in Grade IV and Grade III.
I’ve been hosting All Things Considered for KUNC 91.5 since September, 2016. Please see my bio for KUNC here: http://www.kunc.org/people/