In 1931 a group of WWI veterans and the American Legion formed the Scottish Bagpipe Band, based in Medford, Ore. For a short time they were called the Elks Kilty Band, but in 1978 they became the Siskiyou Highland Pipes and Drums. Today they perform under the name of the Southern Oregon Scottish Bagpipe Band.
Band members have varied cultural backgrounds and the band has played a blend of multi-cultural music ever since Pipe Major Roland Kari introduced Latin rhythms into some Scottish Bagpipe tunes.
The members wear the unique seven-color Muted Anderson tartan. Other tartans have six colors or less. The band’s first performance was on Armistice Day 1931. Never having worn a kilt previously, they accidentally wore them backwards until a kind Scotswoman pointed it out.
The band still performs all over Oregon and Northern California and is the “home band” for the Douglas County Celtic Highland Games. The 83-year-old band is believed to be the second oldest American Pipe Band west of the Rockies and is undisputedly the oldest in Southern Oregon and Northern California.
Sources: “Our Band’s History.” pipinglion.com. Southern Oregon Scottish, 13 Sept. 2014. Web. 13 Oct. 2014; “Southern Oregon Scottish Bagpipe Band.” Bagpiper.com. Web. 13 Oct. 2004; Whitehorsecoffee.com/Celtic. White Horse Coffee and Tea Celtic and Bagpipe Links, Web. 13 Oct. 2014.