Ever since Rankin learned how to play an instrument, he also picked up the art of entertaining, whether it was playing a set of tunes on the pipes at Alice Freeman's Ceilidhs, singing for a dancing crowd in a bar in Halifax with Party Boots, or playing on stage with the show DRUM! Known mainly in Cape Breton as a traditional piper and piano player from Mabou, Rankin started playing pipes under the instruction of Mark Stewart and Marie MacDonald. His piping has taken him to Ceolas in South Uist, the 2006 World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow, Scotland with the Gaelic College Pipe Band, the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and Dollywood, Tennessee with the show DRUM! He has piped for The White Stripes, when they played in Cape Breton, and has played at Celtic Colours as a solo artist as well as with the Chieftains and Carlos Nunez. He also has taught piping numerous years at the Gaelic College, where he spent many previous summers working as a duty piper and playing with the Gaelic College Pipe Band.