pipe band career started as a snare drummer at the age of 10 under
the direction of Don Bellamy, Director of the Whitespot Pipe Band.
He played with the band for four years until 1967 when he joined
the Seaforth Cadet Pipe Band. For two years he played in the Cadet
and Militia pipe bands competing around the Pacific Northwest.
At the bequest of his father, Rob moved on to play with the Maple
Ridge Legion Pipe Band as their lead drummer, and along with Pipe
Major Archie McAffer they took the band to a competitive level
previously unseen in Legion bands in B.C.
Rob joined the RCMP and put his drumming career temporarily on
the shelf. Rob was posted to Campbell River, BC
he was asked to help instruct the local pipe band, providing instruction
to the entire drum corps. In 1979 Rob's career brought him back
to the Lower Mainland and upon arriving he was approached by Drum
Major Fred Hall of the Vancouver Police Pipe Band to join their
drum corps. Rob played with the band for six years attaining the
role of drum instructor due to the rule that all lead positions
in the band had to be held by Vancouver Police Officers.
In August of 1984 Rob
was invited to play with the Triumph Street Pipe Band (Grade 1)
under the direction P/M Rob Menzies and Lead Drummer Scott Robertson,
the latter providing excellent direction and tutelage to Rob during
this time. It was a highlight of Rob's career in drumming. Not only
was he able to play at this level of drumming but he was also able
to play in a band with his sister, Kim, for the first time. The
band enjoyed competitive success on the west coast, and in 1986
competed in the World Championships. Due to personal family reasons
Rob left the band in 1987.
In 1988 Rob joined the
Delta Police Pipe Band where, during
sixteen years with the band, was a side drummer, Lead Drummer and
In 2004 Rob was asked
to play with the Maple Ridge Pipe Band (grade 2) as a tenor drummer,
and he eagerly accepted this new challenge. Under the leadership
of Lead Drummer Alistair Fraser and the personal instruction of
Jacquie Middleton, Rob made the transition to the tenor. In 2005,
Maple Ridge finished 2nd in Grade 2 at the North American Championships,
and in 2006 the Drum Corps finished 4th in the qualifiying round
at the Worlds, but the band was shut out of the final round.
Rob had been trying to
start the "E" Division Pipes and Drums since 1998 when
they had a nucleus of Regular and Retired RCMP members playing at
some Force functions. In 2005 he left Maple Ridge to devote his
full time efforts to getting this band off the ground by focusing
on civilian volunteers. With musical leadership from P/M Bruce Topp
and D/S Alistair Fraser the future is looking very bright.
To send an email to Rob,