Biography:Duncan Kippen

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Duncan Kippen

 Given name:     Duncan
 Middle name:     
 Family name:     Kippen
 Place of birth:     
 Place of death:     
 Year of birth:     
 Year of death:     
 Profile:     Collector, Composer, Musician
 Source of information:     

Biographical notes

Duncan Kippen, of Crieff, Perthshire (b. 1831), also contributed music to his friend Robert Ford's Vagabond Songs and Ballads of Scotland (1904). "Kippen was a Crieff man, a musician, composer and organist, as well as being a more than talented local historian and scribe. Indeed, he is mentioned in the preface to Porteous’s History of Crieff and it would appear that much of the local historical information contained therein came from his pen. A more avuncular individual than Porteous, he tended to shun the lime light but on reflection must be rated alongside his Perth contemporary Fittes in contribution to research into our past." He composed "Our Native Home," "Highland Polka" and "Pibroch of Bonny Strathearn" among other pieces.

The Harp of Perthshire printed this short remembrance:

Born in Crieff on the 28th of June 1831, the only son of the late John Kippen, shoemaker there, is quite a man of mark in various aspects of his life and character. In the whole district of Strathearn there is no one better versed in the local history and topography, " Crieff Its Traditions and Stories," being very largely from his pen. In musical matters he has been an enthusiast almost from his infancy, and besides knowing the subject theoretically and historically in every detail, he was for many years a teacher of vocal and instrumental music, has written numerous articles on the subject, and is himself the composer of many beautiful and distinctly original melodies, which have been published, set to words also written by himself. Mr. Kippen conducted the choir in Crieff Parish Church during the famous organ controversy, which extended from 1865 to 1867, when Dr. Cunningham introduced instrumental music into the church service. He has many a good-humoured and instructive story to tell of that animated struggle, as he has also of many other things which have happened in the district within his day and generation. Mr. Kippen's rare fund of humour, his familiarity with local history and tradition, his love of music and story-telling powers, secured to him the kindly interest of the late Sir William Keith Murray of Ochtertyre, than whom Scotland has seldom seen a finer specimen of the good old country gentleman ; and it was he who led the famous local band which frequently performed at Ochtertyre house a number of years ago. Editor of "The Sacred Chorister," containing a varied selection of music for use in churches, he is Inspector of Poor for the Parish of Crieff, and has cultivated a taste for literature. For more than thirty years he has maintained a corresponding connection with the Press, and contributed articles to the People's Journal, People's Friend, and other publications. His songs contained in this work, selected from quite a number, mostly on local subjects, have been separately set to music and published in large sheet form with pianoforte accompaniments.