In response to Dan Mozell's request re: Scottish snap in Strathspeys:
In bagpipe scores, strathspeys are written in common time, with each beat
being primarily two tied eighth notes, the first dotted and the second cut
or vice-versa, depending on the accent desired. As our accenting often follows
a "strong,weak,medium,weak" accent, this allows us to build it into the musical
score itself. I would say that in answer to your query, "snaps" is actually
built into the tune proper and definitely not left to absolute interpretation.
For if it were, a strathspey might very well degenerate to a 4/4 march and
such is not the case. For most pipers, a strathspey represents a very special
and unique aspect of our music.I am sure that a scottish fiddler would agree
with this and in fact, perhaps having even a stronger opinion. In teaching
the pipes, we teach the strathspey as a unique musical identity and the only
question might be "how much phrasing" as we call it....hope this helps out.
Ken Eller, member of the Fraser Highlanders, Toronto, Canada