RRCMP "E" Division Pipe Band 
Profile: Colin Grinstead
 

 

Colin began piping in 1967, with The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada, in Montreal Quebec. Colin competed with the cadet band that, in 1969, won the Grade 3 Championship at the Maxville Highland Games, in Maxville Ontario. He played with the cadet band for four years before moving up to the battalion band in 1972. In 1974, Colin traveled with the band to perform at the Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

While in Montreal, Colin had the unique opportunity to play pipes all through his High School years,

 

with The Olde 78th Fraser Highlanders. The band performed at Fort Ste Helene, in period uniforms of the 1700s, and was a constant summer job for 6 years. Aside from extensive trips to the Atlantic Provinces, and the eastern seaboard of the United States, the band was also the host band for the International Scottish Festival in Toronto in 1972 and 1973. The festival marked the first time that all the top bands from Scotland, came to Canada to compete.

It was also in Montreal, that another piping position held, was that of the “Ogilvy” piper. In 1950, Ogilvy’s department store brought 2 pipers over from Scotland to perform at the closing of the store, on a daily basis. This tradition has carried on to this day, and Colin played at the store from 1972 until 1978.

In 1978, Colin joined the R.C.M.P. ,and upon completion of training at Depot Division, in Regina Saskatchewan, was

 

posted to “E” Division. In 1979 Colin joined the Royal Canadian Legion (Branch 83) pipe band, and then moved on to The Vancouver Police Pipe Band in 1981. It was with The Vancouver Police Pipe Band, that Colin had the pleasure to travel and perform with in Hong Kong ,Singapore, Japan, and China.

In 1998 , Colin and Drum Major Rob Smith, performed at The Nova Scotia International Tattoo, as part of the RCMP Pipe Band , made up of players from across the divisions in Canada. The Tattoo’s theme for 1998, was the RCMP’s 125th Anniversary. As Pipe Major of this band, Colin had the honor to be the lone piper for the closing show, with Commissioner Phil Murray, in attendance.

Colin recently retired from the RCMP, and lives in South Surrey, with his wife Gail and 2 children, Alexander and Lauren.

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