In the bag - Anders Norudde


Anders Norudde is a multi-instrumentalist and violin maker, most famous for playing in Swedish/Finnish band Hedningarna (‘the Heathens”). As well as violin, moraharpa, bowed harp, willowflutes and whistles, he plays Swedish bagpipes, which he took up in 1981. The most recent Hedningarna album, &, was released in 2012.

What bagpipes do you play.

I play the Swedish bagpipes. Until six months ago I just had my old set from the 80s made by Leif Eriksson, though modified by me with a new bag. Now I have a new set by Max Persson with carbon-fibre reeds..

What led you to take up piping.

When I heard the pipes at a fiddler meeting in 1980. That and hearing old kinds of folk music.

Which pipers do you most admire.

I don’t know names, but I love, for example, Hungarian and Bulgarian pipers. Single reeds.

Status quo (between the years 1970-76!), blues, Baroque music.

If you had your life again, what instrument would you play.

The same instruments.

What three words describe your piping style.

What people say: expressive, groovy, false ;-.

What tune would you have played at your funeral and why.

Some nice old tune in a minor key.

Bellows or mouth-blown.


Cats or dogs.


Do you prefer playing, dancing or both.

Playing and sometimes dancing.

Cane or plastic reeds.


What’s your greatest musical achievement.

Perhaps the years 1992-99, playing with Hedningarna, or the band Blå bergens Borduner (we released a CD in 1993). Or maybe my solo album Kan själv! from 2000. What’s your most embarrassing bagpiping moment.

I don’t remember just now.

What’s the most annoying question you get asked about the bagpipes.

Is it from Scotland.

What advice would you give a novice.

Listen, listen and listen again to bagpipes and the music traditions around them.

I love bagpipes because…

They sound like Status quo (1970-76!), without the drums… ;-.

Listen to Anders at

As told to Andy Letcher

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