Who are the Gordon Duncan Memorial Trust?

The Board of Trustees comprises members of Gordon’s family and friends as well as several others who are active within the field of Scottish traditional music.  There are currently 12 trustees, 8 of whom have been trustees from the creation of the Trust in 2006.

Ian Duncan

IAN G DUNCAN

CHAIR of the Trust & Gordon's brother
Photo of Gary West

GARY J WEST

VICE CHAIR of the Trust, Lecturer & Musician
Photo of Chris Duncan

CHRIS M DUNCAN

Treasurer, Secretary & Gordon's sister-in-law
Photo of Frances Macfarlane

FRANCES M MACFARLANE

Gordon's sister

ALEXANDER R C MACFARLANE

Gordon's brother-in-law
Photo of Gordy Duncan

GORDON DUNCAN (Jr)

Gordon's son
Ross Ainslie

ROSS AINSLIE

Gordon's Former Pupil & Friend
Ian Green

IAN D GREEN

Trustee
Fiona Ritchie

Fiona K Ritchie

Trustee

ANDY SHEARER

Trustee
Gus Clarke

ANGUS CLARKE

Trustee
Lesley Shaw

Lesley Shaw

Trustee

Biographies

IAN G DUNCAN: Chairman

Ian is Gordon’s elder brother and was Pipe Major of the Vale of Atholl Pipe Band when Gordon played with the band. Gordon followed his brother to play with Scottish Power Pipe Band and then to Drambuie Kirkliston Pipe Band, when Ian took over as Pipe Major there and when they won the World Pipe Band Championships in Grade 2 in 2015. Both Ian and Gordon were Atholl Highlanders and Ian took over as Pipe Major of the Atholl Highlanders in c.2004

GARY J WEST: Vice-chairman

Gary, now Professor Gary West, Personal Chair in Scottish Ethnology, at the School of Scottish Studies at the University of Edinburgh and  Director of the European Ethnological Research Centre, is also the presenter of the  weekly ‘Pipeline’ programme on BBC Radio Scotland. Gary grew up with Gordon both at school in Pitlochry and as a fellow piper in the Vale of Atholl Pipe Band as the band rose through the Grades up to Grade 1 Scottish and European Champions. When Gordon left the folk music group ‘Ceolbeg’, Gary stepped into Gordon’s place with Gary’s own style. Gary has played, toured and recorded  with a variety of musicians, including the unique Atholl Highlanders Pipe Band.

CHRIS M DUNCAN: Secretary & Treasurer

Chris is Gordon’s sister-in-law who played near to him in the Vale of Atholl Pipe Band, from 1981, on bass drum when Gordon favoured playing in the back row of pipers, and after in the Drambuie Kirkliston Pipe Band too.  Chris was also Gordon’s dentist.  Gordon had a great dentition but with a unique occlusion from wearing down his incisors by biting on the Low D whistle! (We got protectors on the blowpipe of the Great Highland Bagpipe).

FRANCES M MACFARLANE

Frances is the younger of Gordon’s two elder sisters (Moira is the older of his sisters).  Frances was a singer and played guitar at the Highland Nights held in Pitlochry.  Frances is also a fine fiddle player.

ALEXANDER R C MACFARLANE

Sandy is Frances’s husband and Gordon’s brother in law.  Their son, David, continues the family musical contribution by playing great fiddle music and is a music producer.

GORDON DUNCAN (JR)

Gordon’s son, Gordy, is on his own musical journey as a multi-instrumentalist, singer and, like his Dad, a composer.

ROSS AINSLIE

Ross is one of Scotland’s finest traditional musicians and composers, playing pipes, whistles and cittern. Born in Perthshire, Ross began his career as a member of the Perth and District Pipe Band, before joining the Vale of Atholl Pipe Band, where he was mentored by Gordon. Hugely influenced by Gordon’s fearlessly innovative spirit and groundbreaking compositions, Ross began exploring his own abilities as a composer and writing his own tunes.

In 2002 he was a finalist in the prestigious BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year competition

Ross is a founding member of the 13-piece musical powerhouse Treacherous Orchestra who received a prestigious nomination for the Scottish Album of the Year Award for their second album ‘Grind’ in 2015. He’s also a member of world/trad fusion group Salsa Celtica and Indian-Scottish quartet India Alba. Ross also writes and performs with Irish Uilleann piper Jarlath Henderson who have released two critically acclaimed albums, Partners in Crime (2008) and Air-Fix (2013), which showcase their groundbreaking fusion of Border and Uilleann pipes. He performs regularly with Dougie Maclean and Charlie Mckerron, toured with Gordon Duncan (Jr), Flook and Ivan Drever’s band Clueless, and a special guest spot on Shooglenifty’s ‘The Untied Knot’.

Ross released his first solo record, ‘Wide Open’, which was nominated for Album of the Year at the Scots Trad Music Awards in 2013 and made the top 10 of the Sunday Herald’s Top 50 Scottish Albums of 2013 list (no.9).

He has been nominated for Instrumentalist of the year in 2010, Musician of the Year at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2013 and 2016, nomination for Best Duo with Jarlath Henderson in 2014, for Live Act of the year with Jarlath Henderson in 2008 and with Treacherous Orchestra in 2009 and 2010, nominated for Album of the year in 2013, Treacherous Orchestra won Album of the year and Ross also was Composer of the year in 2015.

Ross’s most recent albums released are ‘Sanctuary’, a solo recording, and ‘Symbiosis II’ by Ross and Ali Hutton, which includes tune called ‘The Trust’!

IAN D GREEN

Ian set up and ran Greentrax Recording Ltd and produced Gordon’s three albums.  The first ‘Just for Seamus’ was in 1994 and in the intervening years they became good friends.  Gordon, in his pawkie way often referred to Ian as “Greenie” or “The Boss” and Ian was immensely proud when Gordon composed a great 2/4 march, “Ian Green of Greentrax” in his honour.

FIONA K RITCHIE

Forthcoming.

ANDY SHEARER

Forthcoming.

ANGUS CLARKE

Gus’ connection with Gordon goes back to his own first practice with the Vale of Atholl in the summer of 1975, when Gordon was a blond haired youngster sitting at the table playing a slow, but immaculately correct and musical Scotland the Brave on his practice chanter. Over many years in the Vale, and later the Atholl Highlanders, the two of them became good friends, with Gordon occasionally staying in Gus’ flat when attending Perth College during his time as an apprentice joiner. Gus also introduced Gordon to the delights of backpacking when they walked from Blair Atholl through Glen Tilt to Braemar – with an overnight in a very damp tent next to Loch Tilt. Gordon failed to catch the promised trout for breakfast the next morning!

LESLEY SHAW

Lesley’s background is in events and festivals, having worked with Piping Live and Celtic Connections since 2005. She is a huge supporter of the Scottish traditional music scene and has worked with various bands including India Alba, Treacherous Orchestra and the Grit Orchestra on a freelance basis throughout that time. Lesley has supported the Trust since the first of the National Treasure series of concerts in 2007 and managed the logistics of the Just for Gordon concerts in Glasgow and Lorient in 2017.