Iain's tribute to Chieftain Bob

Updated: Jun 7, 2020

Pipe Bands Australia has received a new tune by Scottish composer Iain Bell composed in honour of Robert James Knox (Bob) Semple OAM BEM.

Chieftain of Pipe Bands Australia until his passing in January this year, Bob was a respected legend of our pipe band family serving as a piper and drum major for more than 70 years.

Today would have been Bob's 100th birthday.

During the Second World War Bob joined the 2/12th Australian Field Regiment – 9th Australian Division, which ultimately saw more front-line combat action than any other Australian division. Soliders in the unit were dubbed the ‘Rats of Tobruk’.

In 1946, in same month he returned to Australia, Bob joined the Hawthorn Pipe Band and played in its ranks until 1960. He remained associated with the band for the rest of his life, though, as Drum Major until his death.

Iain, of Canonbie, never knew Bob but was touched by the news of his death and composed the 2/4 march in honour of Bob and his comrades.

The print music are available for members of Pipe Bands Australia. Please contact us if you would like to receive copy.

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