Old fashioned potato peelers

Old fashioned potato peelers

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From Lanctot to Ley

Eugene Laderoute

Rosin on the Bow, Sunshine Records - SSBLP-419

Eugenhe Laderoute, fiddle

Tracks: The Prairie Winter Blues; The riding Mountain Rambler; Lorraine's Waltz; Stan's Jig; Wheat City Waltz; Glenorky Jig; Simone's Reel; Ed's Favorite Waltz; The Turtle River Breakdown; Del's Waltz; Keystone Reel; Belles of Brandon Breakdown

Eugene Laderoute at one time had a dream and the dream was to put his fiddle music on record. Today Gene can share his dream with you.

Gene Laderoute, a native of Brandon, Manitoba has bee mastering the fiddle since the age of six. The many trophies that can sit up on a mantle represent the countless fiddle contests that Gene has entered ande won, covering a vast area throughout North America. Gene has a style all his own, and when he puts rosin on the bow, you better prepare yourself for some mighty fine fiddle music. Eugene Laderout - - Rosin on the Bow.


Also see: Comp1.htm#24


Denis Lanctot

For The Love Of Tara, Ind. - DLCD-0597 - 1997

Denis Lanctot, fiddle, piano; Bobby Lalonde, strings

Produced by Denis Lanctot, Rhonda Lanctot & Bobby Lalonde. Recorded and mixed at Bolab Audio Productions

Tracks: The Child's Reel / The Temple House; Master McDermott's / The First Month of Summer; Fox Hunt; Hillside Echoes / The Trumpet Hornpipe / Fiddler's Youth; Sheep Shanks / Buckley's Fancy / The Blacksmith; Golden Eagle Hornpipe in "A" / Denis Alexander's Reel / Master (Sean) McGuire; Joyous Waltz; Apples in Winter / The Morning Dew / Dinney O'Brien's; Jackson's Reel / Dublin Reel; Dowd's #9 / Maxwell's Reel; For the Love of Tara; Arragh Mountain / Father Burke; Don Side Strathspey / Lady Georgina Campbell / Take Your Choice "G" to "A"; American Polka; Wheel's of the World / One for Danny / Leo Browne's Birthday Surprise; Humours of Lisadell / Dr. Gilbert; Maids of Arrochar / Dr. Kevin McCann's Fancy / "Uncle" Sean's Reel; Paddy Ryan's Dream / Mama's Pet

"For the Love of Tara" is my third recording and it is very special to me. I dedicate it to Tara Lynne Touesnard, my wife's sister, who died in a car accident on April 25, 1994.

This tragedy drove me to immediately begin working on plans to recreate the fiddle that died with her - a fiddle that had once belonged to me and then to Tara. With time and perseverance I began to work towards my goal. It was with the help and experience of a wonderful fiddle maker and great friend, Dennis Alexander, from Aylmer, Quebec that my goal was achieved in June of 1995. The fiddle pictured on the front and back covers, and played on this recording, is the result of Dennis' work and my determination to keep a part of Tara Lynne's memory alive. The inscription inside reads: "This violin is dedicated to the loving memory of Tara Lynne Touesnard 1972 - 1994."

For the Love of Tara was written in October, 1994 with thoughts of Tara Lynne. It was my memories of her that inspired me to write this piece which tells a story of love and friendship that sadly ended too soon. I hope this composition will inspire you, the listener, as it has me.

For the Love of Tara, as well as eight other tunes on this recording are my own. Hillside Echoes is an air I wrote several years ago which reminded Sam Cormier of echoes in a valley; he thus gave it that name. Fiddler's Youth was written when I was 17 and resurfaced when I was preparing for this recording. Dennis Alexander's Reel is one of my latest tunes named after Dennis - fiddle maker, musician and friend. "Uncle" Sean's Reel and Master (Sean) McGuire were both named after one of my idols, Sean McGuire. Both tunes are included on this recording as a tribute to him. One for Danny was written in Nov. ''96 and named after Danny O'Connell - a talented young fiddler who has been a joy to teach for the past 5 years. Leo Browne's Birthday Surprise was also written in Nov. '96 and named in honour of Leo Browne's 89th birthday. Dr. Kevin McCann's Fancy is a tune that was written for Dr. McCann who has a love for and great knowledge of Irish music.

A Special word of appreciation goes to the following:

- Sean McGuire of Ireland for the recordings he has produced over the last several years. Listening to his music has been greatly responsible in the development of my own style of playing as you hear it today.

- The late Jean Carignan, formerly of Delson, PQ for the profound influence he's had on my music over the years, in particular m bowing style and technique. Having known him personally has left me with many fond memories.

- Gilles Losier of Montreal (personal accompanist to Jean Carignan for man years) who has had a tremendous influence on my style of piano playing. His music has helped me enormously in the development of my knowledge of the keyboard.

Special Thanks To:

- Dr. Kevin McCann who has been continuously sending me new music to listen to. He was a great help in naming some of the tunes on this recording.

- Jacquelin Guerette for also helping with the titles of some tunes.

- My very good friend, Alton Craig, for his help and support with this project.

Finally I wish to extend my heartfelt thanks to my wife, Rhonda, for her encouragement, patience, understanding and love. The tremendous help and support she has given me has meant a lot. Without her this project would not be what it is.

Denis Lanctot
June, 1997

Address: 1413-100 Hinchey Ave., Ottawa, ON K1Y4L9

Benoît Lajeunesse

Dans Tous les Cantons, No label C-7204 circa 1979

Benoît Lajeunesse, violon; Simon Blanchette, piano; Jacques Bolduc, guitare; Johnny Jeffries, basse; Alain Bolduc, batterie

Produced by Jean Collard for Loubico Inc; Engineers: Julien Provencher & Denis Aubin; Recorded at Studio J.D. in conjunction with CHLT TV, Sherbrooke, Quebec

Tracks: Teel Á Ti-Paul; Orange Blossom Spécial; Reel de Ste-Anne; West Milia (Westphalia - ed) Waltz; Contre Danse; Chicken Reel; Rubber Dolly; Reel 35e Anniversaire; Reel de L’Oiseau Moqueur; Le Rêve du Diable; Pizzicato Reel
 

Ce premier microsillon de Benoît est sûrement à l’origine d’une longue série. Ce jeune talent de chez nous, a déjà beaucoup fait parler de lui, partout au Québec.

Sa simplicité d’enfant, joint à son talent, en font une explosion de joie. D’un contact facile, jouissant d’une personnalité pétillante et attachante, Benoît déborde d’une jeunesse saine et plaine de vie.

Benoît n’a pas seulement le talent, il a aussi l’ardeur au traveil. Avec le support de ses parents et de sa famille, Benoît a su s’imposer les sacrifices nécessaires au développement et à l’épanouissement de ce talent de musicien qu’il possède. Pour lui, l’avenir est rempli de promesses.

À la lecture de son curiculum vitae, on notera que malgré son jeune âge, il possède tout un bagage d’expérience.

Je voudrais profiter de ce premier disque pour féliciter Benoît pour le sérieux qu’il met au traveil et pour lui dire que même s’il est encore petit, pour nous, il fait parti des grands. Je te remercie Benoît de nous donner l’occasion d’apprécier davantage tes airs de violon grâce aux nombreux moments de plaisir que nous prendrons à les écouter. Nous avons déjà hâte d’entendre les microsillons qui suivront celui-ci.

Amicalement,
Jean Collard

Benoît Lajeunesse est né à Joliette, le 24 novembre 1965 le sixième d’une famille de sept enfants. Il n’avait que trieze ans au moment de l’enregistrement de ce microsillon. Dès l’âge de cinq ans, on décela chez lui un talent pour la musique. Il jouait à merveille l’harmonica. Ses parents se félicitent aujourd’hui d’avoir eu la sagesse de l’inscrire dés ce moment à des cours de musique, le solfège et de violon au collège de Joliette et au Conservatoire de Musique du Québec à Montéal.

Benoît Lajeunesse, violoniste, est membre de l’orchestre symphonique des jeunes de Joliette. Il interprète avec autant de facilité la musique classique, populaire et folklorique.

En plus du violon, plusieurs instruments lui sont familiers: la guitare, l’harmonica, l’orgue, la batterie.

Benoît fut proclamé champion provincial toute catégorie, alors qu’il n’avait que douze ans, en juin 1978, dans le cadre du Festival des Cantons, au Palais des Sports de Sherbrooke. Il est déjà connu et aimé du grand public grâce à ses nombreuses appartitions sur les réseaux de télévision. Il a conquis le Québec par sa charmante participation à un message commercial télévisé de Coca-Cola.

Reconnaissant son talent, l’Office National du Film a produit un court métrage à son sujet. Ce film, dans lequel il est évidemment la vedette, s’intitule “Benoit”.

Benoît n’a pas fini d’épater.

Bobby Lalonde

Bobby Lalonde, London Records EBX-4179, 1973

Bobby Lalonde, fiddle; Gerry Lalonde, drums; Gilles Lalonde, bass guitar; Marc Lalonde, piano

Tunes: First Century; Maple Sugar; Dragging the Bow; Marion Waltz; Grand-pa’s Brushout; Dauphin Waltz; Black Foot Jam; Sweet Georgia Brown; Louisiana Waltz; Boil The Cabbage; Eidleweiss; Shelburne Reel; Rippling Water Jig
 

Nestled in the Ottawa Valley, the little-known and tiny town of Fournier now finds itself on the map of Western Music with its 15 year old ‘GOLDEN FIDDLER’ Bobby Lalonde.

Bobby began studying the fiddle at age 8 and, at 9, he was competing in the Old Time Fiddlers’ Contest at Shelburne, Ontario, where he was among the top contestants in the 18-and-under class. At the age of 10 he made his first television appearance in Montréal, and Québec City. He then went on to win trophy after trophy at regional fiddling competitions.

In May, 1973, he was invited by Stompin’ Tom Connors to join the cast of ‘Across This Land’ a feature film presenting Canadian Western Artists. In addition to his excellent fiddling, Bobby is a fine singer who also plays bass, guitar, organ and drums. His many faceted musical personality and likable character make him a young man to watch in the arena of Western Music. With his three older brothers, he has formed a band called the ‘FOUR SONS’ which is very much in demand in and around Fournier.

Bobby now plays his fiddle for you accompanied by his brothers, Gerry on drums, Gilles on bass guitar and Marc on piano.

Festival Western, London 7-611-0

See Compilations


Grant Lamb

Tunes from Home: Voyager Recordings VRLP 312-S Stereo, 1974

Grant Lamb, fiddle; Vivian Williams, piano; Richard Marvin, guitar; Philip Williams, bass

Produced by Phil & Vivian Williams with production assistance from Frank Ferrel; Engineer: Philip L. Williams / Robin Marvin, March, 1974

Tracks: Vivian's Polka; Webb's Hornpipe; Davy McDonald's Jig; George Neddery's Clog; Grant Lamb's Breakdown; Flatiron Jig; Gerrald's Favorite; Wilfred Hately's Waltz; Bruce Lamb's Jig; Darkie's Dream; Mountain Hornpipe; Bagot Two Step; Phil's Clog; Durang's Hornpipe; Dry River Waltz; Johnny's Jig; Opera Reel; Elsmith Four step; Turkey In The Straw; French Minuet

Grant Lamb, who farms near Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, is apt to turn up at fiddle contests all across Canada and Western Canada when you least expect to see him, near or far from home. It is always a delight for us when he comes out to British Columbia for contests because we know we stand a chance of coaxing him down to Seattle for a visit. Mr. Lamb is the kind of person who is fun to be around, a delight to play music with, and a fine fiddler to boot. His fiddling reflects his warm personality and the strong musical tradition of Central Canada in which he was raised. On a visit with us in Seattle in March, 1974, he played for us some of the old tunes he learned from his mother and father, many of which are relatively unknown, and all of which are delightful. We knew that others would enjoy these tunes and Mr. Lamb's playing as much as we did, and persuaded him to record this album for us of these tunes from home. Mr. Lamb is accompanied by Vivian Williams, piano; Richard Marvin, guitar; and Philip Williams, string bass.

Phil and Vivian Williams
Voyager Recordings

I was born in Manitoba in 1915, the 10th of September, in a little district called Wilson Glen. It's a few miles northwest of Treherne, Manitoba, which is west of Winnipeg. My family was musical - nearly everyone in it played. There were a few oldtime fiddlers around besides my family, but not many. My parents played for a lot of dances in Ontario before moving to Manitoba, and played quite a few there. They did pretty well all oldtime dances - square dances, four-steps, seven-steps, and sometimes clogs or step dancing for entertainment before the main dance would start.

My mother had an organ and I played with that as soon as I could sit up close to it. One of the first waltzes I could play on it - I was about five years old - was the Missouri Waltz. Then I got a banjo in the early '30's and I played banjo for eight or ten years, and then I picked up the fiddle. This was about 1935. I didn't have any formal training at all. There wasn't anybody close to give lessons and no money to pay anybody then if there had been. During the 1930's there wasn't much money with the depression on. I learned listening to the radio and listening to my folks.

I entered my first fiddle contest in 1939 in Portage la Prairie. At that time there had been a few contests around, but not too many - not like there are now. They used to have them in Winnipeg and Portage, but not as often as they do now. There was a while during the war there when they didn't have any, but after the war was over, they started picking it up a little and now they 're getting to be quite a popular thing. I won my first contest in Portage in 1939. They had judges that were well qualified for oldtime music because they knew oldtime tunes quite well, as that is all there was. You had to play a waltz and a breakdown in three minutes. They usually had somebody ring a bell, but most of the fiddlers didn't know for sure whether they were to stop when they rang the bell or finish the tune. I played a lot for dances starting in about 1932 but haven't been playing regularly with a dance band for about ten years.

Grand Lamb
March, 1974
Manitoba Champion, 1953, 54, 55

1. Vivian's Polka - This is a tune my folks played for which I have no name. Vivian liked it, so that's what I'll call it.

2. Webb's Hornpipe - Wilbert Lamb - "Webb" for short - used to play this tune. I think it is one of his own compositions.

3. Davy McDonald's Jig - Davy McDonald farms out of Portage la Prairie. George Neddery used to visit him a lot. He lived near a lake where there was lots of hunting. He liked hunting and was a great listener of oldtime music. His dad was a violin player. Neddery used to go hunting with McDonald and in the evening play the fiddle. I had no name for this tune so I named it after Davy McDonald. I learned it from my folks.

4. George Neddery's Clog - George Neddery is an uncle of mine. I can't remember where I got this tune. His dad was a great oldtime fiddler.

5. Grant Lamb's Breakdown - I wrote this in 1952. Don Messer recorded it and it is on sheet music.

6. Flatiron Jig - My dad played this tune as long as I can remember. I don't know where he got it. He was not a reader and it is not in any books I know of.

7. Gerrald's Favorite - I learned this from a fiddler named Carl Elliot in 1969 in a jam session at Shelburne, Ontario. Gerrald is Carl's brother.

8. Wilfred Hately's Waltz - This tune came from down in Ontario. My grandmother was a Hately. Wilfred Hately was a violin player.

9. Bruce Lamb's Jig - This is a jig Bruce Lamb likes and asked me to play a lot. My mom and dad played it as long as I could remember. I never heard anyone else play it.

10 Darkie's Dream - I learned this from my mother who used to play it on the organ. It came from Harding's Collection of Jigs and Reels for Organ and Piano, which my mother got when she was nine years old.

11. Mountain Hornpipe - This tune is in several books and old arrangements for piano and fiddle.

12. Bagot Two Step - This originated with fiddlers in the Portage area - Jim Smith, Bob Leader, Walter Machan, Norman Voss played it, among others.

13. Phil's Clog - I've known this tune for a long time; can't remember where I learned it.

14. Durang's Hornpipe - This is an old, old tune found in Harding's book. My folks played it differently than in some books, and that is the way I play it here.

15. Dry River Waltz - This is supposed to have come from down East. I learned it from Don Messer.

16. Johnny's Jig - Don Messer used to play this.

17. Opera Reel  - This is an old, old traditional tune. My parents played it and I play it the way I learned it from them. I've won many fiddle contests with it.

18. Elsmith Four step - There was a district in our area called after a family of Smiths. I went to many dances there and they always played this tune.

19. Turkey In The Straw - Everyone knows that.

20. French Minuet - This is an old, old tune always played at all the old halls and schoolhouses around the country over the years. Hardly a night went by when it wasn't played. It was a dance you waltzed to partly and then sort of two-stepped.

Bill Lamey

Full Circle, Rounder Records 82161-7032-2, 2000
Click here


The Fiddlers of Cape Breton, Celtic SCS 57 (Compatible Sterio)

See Compilations

Hugh Lamont

My Heritage, Ambassador Records A-12-01

Hugh Lamont, fiddle; Jim Vaillancourt, rhythm; Graham Reid, drums; Tex Hasper, bass; Dave Evans, spanish; Paul Smith, piano; Larry Dee, steel

Produced by Paul Evans; Recorded at Ambassador Records Studios, Oshawa, ON

Tracks: Charlie Stuart; Pattie On The Railroad or Blackberry Bush; Mom’s Waltz; Mason’s Apron - Hue’s Dream; Harvest Home - McNab’s Hornpipe; Mape Sugar; Faded Love; Jimmy’s Favorite Jig; Peek-a-boo Waltz; Durang’s Hornpipe; Liberty Two-step; Glendural Highalders Steamboat
 

This album is dedicated to Jack McCannel. Jack is responsible for Hugh’s interest in fiddle music. This began as Hugh was a young lad and Jack would take him to different fiddle contests. Hugh is a self taught musician who started off at the age of six playing drums. From there he went on to play bagpipes at nine and then fiddle at fifteen. He won a fiddle contest at the Exhibition (CNE? - ed.) in ‘75 and for three years won the championship at Beaver Valley.

Hugh is a third generation Scot who descends from the Isle of Tiree. He comes from a family background of fiddlers who immigrated to Canada in the 1800s.

Hugh shares his talent with you on this very fine fiddle album and I am sure you will agree with me that this is great toe-tapping music from the very popular Maple Sugar to the slower but just as toe-tapping Peek-A-Boo Waltz.

This album was made possible by the father and family and I am sure that after listening to this record you will join with me in thanking them for the opportunity to enjoy this fine music.

D. Evans

Charlie Landry

Charlie Landry, Amical AMI 1031

Charlie Landry, violon, banjo, mandoline; Fern Pelletier, piano; Barry Nameth, batterie; Denis Champoux, basse

Production: Denis Champoux

Tracks: La Danse du Pop Corn; Les Cavaliers de Sherwood; La Gigue du Vieux Guide; Hi Bill Rag; McDowell’s Breakdown; La Rage Dans le Violon; Marche du Débarquement; L’Oncle Henri - Reel du Philosophe; Tarentelle Sicilienne; toi, Le Poête

Jean Landry

Une Soirée de Chez Nous avec… Jean Landry, Budget Musique BB-9037, circa 1970

Jean Landry, violon

Production: Paul Menard

Tunes: Reel St-Denis; Fille des prairies; Valse Nathalie; Reel Chantal; Petite maman; Reel mon oncle Landry; Un vere sur la table; La polka de caraquette; Loin de ton coeur; La valse Laurent

Ned Landry


 


Bowing The Strings with Ned Landry and His New Brunswick Lumberjacks, RCA Victor LCP 1001 circa 1954

Tracks: The Old Man and Old Woman; Dundee Hornpipe; Clarinet Polka; The Ontario Swing; Crooked Stove Pipe; Snow Deer; Bowing The Strings; The Girl I Left Behind Me; Logger’s Breakdown; Monkey’s Wedding reel; The Irish Washerwoman; MacDougall’s Polka
 

In an age when musical fads and dance crazes can catch the public’s fancy overnight and then disappear just as swiftly, the enduring quality of old-fashioned, country-style fiddling is something to marvel at. And yet it isn’t old-fashioned at all. Reels and breakdowns were great entertainment to early Canadian settlers when their day’s work was done, but if we dare think that this old-time music went out with homemade bread, we have only to witness a jamboree in any Canadian village, town or city. The sight of countless teen-agers, and older folk too, “impeccably” dressed in overalls and checkered shirts, kicking up their heels to a country fiddle, would provide ample proof that this music is, after all, ageless.

Frederick “Ned” Landry has been “bowing the strings” of his fiddle for almost two decades now. Born in Saint John, New Brunswick, Ned spent his youthful years as a hard-working logger in the New Brunswick lumber camps. Even then, old-time music held an odd fascination for him. When his day’s work was done, he would listen in rapt attention to grizzly lumberjacks who idled away many an evening by fiddling traditional reels or hornpipes. Ned always looked forward to the visits of Don Messer and his Islanders (actually The Backwoods Trio: Don, Charlie Chamberlain and Duke Neilson - ed) to his home town. As a lad of 17, he would attend these country dances more to be charmed by the fiddling magic of Messer and his men than by the pretty girls who flounced about the floor. So charmed was he, in fact, that he found himself asking Messer for a job. he got it, and for a number of years Ned played mouth organ and guitar with the group - a talent no self-respecting Maritimer fails to cultivate. Later, he switched to fiddle. Today, Ned will tell you proudly that Don is still his ideal.

Ned now enjoys a reputation as one of the greatest Canadian performers of old-time music, but it took him quite a while to earn it. Back in 1939, a guest appearance on the Major Bowes Amateur Hour encouraged him to venture further into the possibilities of a musical career. Returning to Canada, he organized and promoted the Maritime Farmers Orchestra. His contract with RCA Victor Records came about quite by accident. One spring day in 1950, a company representative of RCA Victor was in Saint John on business, and there he visited a friend who also happened to be a close friend of Ned’s. After dinner, the ‘rep’ was invited to listen to a recording made at the fiddler’s home. So impressed was the visitor that he immediately asked to have the record to take back to his company in Montreal. A few weeks later, Ned’s first records were being cut, and he’s been an exclusive RCA Victor recording artist ever since.

Ned Landry’s records have done much to extend his appeal from the Maritimes to the whole of Canada. A series of radio programs soon followed his record debut when Ned joined the Hal Lone Pine Show, which was broadcast thrice weekly over the coast-to-coast network of the CBC. The show originated at Radio Station CFBC in Saint John. Ned Landry has also appeared on CBC-TV’s “Pick The Stars”, but recognition as one of Canada’s leading old-time fiddlers came when he walked off with the first prize in a nation-wide fiddling contest sponsored by the “Burns Chuckwagon Gang”.

Today, much of his time is spent traveling. Ned’s tours have taken him through eastern Canada, where his spirited handling of fiddle and bow has delighted audiences in almost every town hall and arena in the Maritimes, Quebec, Ontario, and even Newfoundland. He usually travels alone, appearing as the “star attraction” at hoedowns, jamborees or country dances with a local band in attendance. Frequent tours do not leave him too much time to spend at home in Saint John. But even when Ned does have a chance to relax with his wife and five children, his fiddle is never idle for very long. The whole family lives with country music, and the Landry household is often the scene of a family-type variety show. Fourteen-year old Patsy, his oldest daughter, who travels with him during summer vacations, sings and tap-dances. Ned’s wife is the only exception. She prefers to remain the musical critic of the family.

It’s only fitting that the group accompanying Ned in this album should be named “The New Brunswick Lumberjacks”. Being a woodsman at heart, Ned has always loved to play for the loggers in the lumbercamps of New Brunswick. Many a ‘jack and his girl’ have skipped lightly to one of Ned Landry’s lively breakdowns at a “Pulp-Peelers Ball”.

Many of the selections included in this album are the tunes most often requested of Ned on his personal appearances. Both the “Ontario Swing” and “Bowing The Strings” are Landry originals. They are all items for which he’s become noted.

The moment his bow touches the strings, a mysterious feeling takes hold of his audience. Toes start tapping; hands start clapping. The “Fiddling Fever” has caught on, and it spreads like wildfire! That’s the reason for the large turnout whenever word gets around that “Ned Landry’s playin’ t’night”. They’re an attentive audience because they find his old-time music as lilting to the ear as it is compelling to the feet. And Ned wouldn’t have it any other way.

Harvey D. Berger

Canada’s Old Time Fiddling Champion, RCA Victor LCP 1012

Tracks: Orange Blossom Special; Whistling Rufus; Mocking Bird; Miramichi River Jig; Hillbilly Calypso; Inverness Gathering; Apple Blossom Hoedown; Maple Sugar; Dashing White Sergeant; Pete’s Jig; Fisher’s Hornpipe; Chicken Reel; Patronella; High Level Hornpipe
 

To families everywhere, Ned Landry’s fiddle playing is as much a part of the home as the parlour sofa. His records are to be heard in places high and places humble. From his fiddle comes a personality that is Landry, and a style that is Canadian. This is Ned’s second long play album for RCA Victor. All selections heard have been rosin tested by him during innumerable public appearances. Basing his choice on the numbers that have been most requested, he feels that the fourteen tunes represented here are among the most popular in his current repertoire. Some of these helped Ned Landry to win, for two consecutive years, Canada’s National Fiddle Championship. This is a contest taking place annually in Shelburne, Ontario, organized by the Rotary Club. Among the participants are the most competent fiddlers in North America. Although anyone may enter, the men are soon separated from the boys in this two-day marathon. In 1957, out of at total of 135 entrants, Ned eliminated everyone. Again, as in 1956, he was awarded, fiddles down, all trophies for the event. These included the Shelburne Cup and the Toronto Globe and Mail Cup. Thousands of spectators from all parts of the country come to see this two-day fiddling extravaganza. It is said that long after bowing ceases on the final night of these competitions, eerie fiddle sounds persist far into the night from the darkened bandstand.

Like most things Canadian, the Landry fiddle style is not without heritage. Long before Confederation, the French, Scottish and Irish settlers were molding their fiddle interpretations into a composite of what is today ‘Canadian’ fiddle.

To those less familiar with the fine art of fiddle playing, it might be explained that there are two distinct styles in North America. There is the Southern, or ‘chop’ fiddle, and there is the Canadian. The Southern style is very effective, and gets its characteristic from a drone note that is played continuously on one string, while the melody is carried on another. There is more jig to the bow, and the stroke is short. Canadian fiddle differs vastly. It is based on a single note technique, and the player’s fingers must be extremely dexterous. Long strokes are used with the bow, approaching a classical form. This is the Landry style. It is as Canadian as maple sugar. Maple Sugar happens to be one of the titles on this album, written by another Canadian named Ward Allen. Two Landry originals are heard... Apple Blossom Hoedown, which Ned wrote commemorating one of his visits to Annapolis Royal for the apple blossom festival, and Hillbilly Calypso which is done in its instrumental version. Pete’s Jig and Orange Blossom Special are not originals, but are his first recordings of these numbers. Other numbers he is recording for the first time are Mocking Bird, Chicken Reel, and Patronella. he has re-introduced those down east favourites Miramachi River Jig, Dashing White Sergeant, and Inverness Gathering.

The actual origin of many numbers Landry plays is difficult to trace. Ned tells the story of an old Canadian pioneer he met while on tour one season. The man was 96 years old, but his mind was bright as a shoebuckle. As Ned played, the old gentleman recalled having heard some of the melodies as a boy. Who knows then, how many generations had heard them before this man, who could think back nearly a century! Whatever your age, we feel sure you will experience the same pleasure everyone does when listening to the Ned Landry - Canada’s National Fiddle Champion.

Bob Destry

Old Time Fiddlin’, RCA Victor LCP 1033

Tracks: New Spanish Two-Step; Indian Reel; Ripple Rock Jig; Atlantic Polka; The Rockin’ Fiddle; Life In The Finland Woods Waltz; Oh! Dem Golden Slippers; Hot Rosin; Hillbilly Calypso; Roll Away Hornpipe; Operator’s Reel; Mouth of the Tobique Breakdown
 

The fiddle first caused music lovers to prick up their ears over four centuries ago. Since that time, it’s influence on our lives has grown steadily - not only in the area of music but also in that of speech. In fact, one indication of the instrument’s continuing popularity is to be found in the subtle way it has affected our vocabularies. today, in almost any conversation, some reference is bound to be made to this old and beloved friend.

“Fiddlesticks”, you may say, “that’s a lot of fiddle-faddle!” Not at all. For instance, how many times have you warned someone to “stop fiddling around!” or met a chipper friend who felt “fit as a fiddle”. Even at sea there’s no escaping it. Fiddleheads adorn the bows of sailing ships and in the form of racks keep your soup from sliding off the cabin table. Skin-divers prowling the watery depths may be greeted by fiddlefish and fiddler crabs. Back on dry land if you’ve a green thumb, you can grow fiddlehead trees. And on Tin Pan Alley, tunesmiths can be heard singing “fiddle-de-dee and fiddle-de-die” and then seeing “rainbows in the sky”.

The fiddle’s primary purpose, of course, is not to brighten and enrich our language but to entertain us with its delightful strains. And nowhere does it fulfill this purpose more completely than in the nimble fingers of Ned Landry. Twice named “North America’s Champion Fiddler” at Shelburne, Ontario’s annual “International Fiddling Competition”, Ned Landry is know across the land as one of the all-time greats in the field of old-time music. Under his magic spell, every sweep of the bow becomes a lesson in lightheartedness and every note a study in gay good humour.

In this album, marking his tenth anniversary as an Exclusive RCA Victor Recording Artist, Ned has gathered together a sprightly collection of reels, jigs, polkas, waltzes and two-steps guaranteed to gladden the hearts of country music enthusiasts everywhere. Moreover, each selection is further proof of the fact that Ned Landry doesn’t have to play “second fiddle” to anyone - he’s FIRST all the way.

Fiddling Favourites, RCA Victor LCP/LCPS 1039

Tracks: St. Anne’s Reel; Lord Beaverbrook Special; Road To The Isles; Darling Nellie Gray; The blackberry Quadrille; My Bonnie Lassie; Blue Mountain Rag; Cock of The North Jig; Lone Star Rag; Balken Hills; Little Burnt Potato; Soldier’s Joy

Me And My Fiddle, RCA Victor LCP/LCPS 1054

Producer, Marcel LeBlanc; Recording Engineer: Roger Belair

Tracks: Pointe-Au-Pic Breakdown ; By The Fireside Polka; McNabb’s Hornpipe; The Last Letter (vocal by Ned Landry); Dusty Miller reel; The Blue Canadian Rockies Waltz; Rubber Dolly; Three Men On A White Horse Breakdown; The Heartbroken Blues (vocal by Ned Landry); The Western Twist; The Peek-A-Boo Waltz; Liberty Two Step

Saturday Night Breakdown, RCA Camden CAL 780

Tracks: Saturday Night Breakdown; Ramblers Hornpipe; The Plough Boy’s Reel; Angus Campbell; The Crooked Hornpipe; St Anne’s Reel; Buffalo Gals; Cotton Eyed Joe; McEachern’s Breakdown; Johnny Wagoner

Bowing The Strings, RCA Camden CAL-891

Tracks: The Old Man and Old Woman; Dundee Hornpipe; Clarinet Polka; The Crooked Stove Pipe; Snow Deer; Bowing The Strings; The Girl I Left Behind Me; Logger’s Breakdown; Monkey’s Wedding reel; MacDougall’s Polka

Ned Landry, RCA Camden CAL-893

Tracks: Orange Blossom Special; Whistling Rufus; Mocking Bird; Miramichi River Jig; Hillbilly Calypso; Inverness Gathering; Apple Blossom Hoedown; Maple sugar; Dashing White Sergeant; Pete’s Jig; Fisher’s Hornpipe; Chicken reel; Patronella; High Level Hornpipe
 

To families everywhere, Ned Landry’s fiddle playing is as much a part of the home as the parlour sofa. His records are to be heard in places hight and places...

(Same as on Canada’s Old Time Fiddling Champion, RCA Victor LCP 1012 above)

Old time Fiddlin’, RCA Camden CAL-894

(Reissue of Old Time Fiddlin’, RCA Victor LCP 1033) 

Lightning Fiddle, RCA Camden CAL 2188

Tracks: Saint John Hoedown; Smash The Window; Operetta Square Dance; The Lightning Hornpipe; Dill Pickles; Bride of the Wind Jig; Celina LeBlanc’s Hornpipe; Over The waves; The Ontario Swing; The Carnival Reel 


Fiddling Around, RCA Camden CAL-2236

Tracks: Red River Rag; The Irish Washerwoman; Answer to a Lady's Slipper; Alec Crockett Reel; Nashville Special; Ned's Favourite Reel; Ottawa Valley Reel; The Mason's Apron; Tuggerman's Jig; Operetta Square Dance

Canadian Old-Time Fiddle - Centennial Tour, Arc Records Centennial Series 251
Produced and Directed by Ben Weatherby

Tracks: Montreal Reel; Winnipeg Special; Nova Scotia Home; Prince Edward Island Is Heaven To Me; My Home By The Fraser; St. John River Jig; Nova Scotia Special; Ottawa Valley Reel; Newfoundland Breakdown; Land of Jubalo; Road To The Isle; Red River Valley
 

In Canada, country music is by far the most popular musical idiom. Dairly, its exponents the land over add to the wealth of country songs with new, original material or thoughtfully reshaped versions of time honoured standards. The demand is enormous. Country music could well be called the Voice of the Nation.

Ned Landry is a giant in this field. A former North American Fiddle Champ, he has written scads of country fiddle tunes and bowed everywhere a bow is resined. since he began fiddling in the ‘hungry thirties’ in Saint John, New Brunswick, with ‘Don Messer’s Lumberjacks’, Ned’s name has, like Messer’s, become a household word in Canada. More, through records, radio, TV, Landry’s fiddle wizardry has gained international notice.

On this, his third Arc album, Ned takes a musical Centennial Tour of Canada. Bowing in the style that made him famous, he plays songs of this land, songs created in this land about this land, songs that in this special year have new significance for Canadians coast-to-coast.

Ben Weatherby


The Girl I Left Behind Me, Arc Records Centennial Series AS-264

Produced and Directed by Ben Weatherby; Recorded at Bay Studios, Toronto, Ontario.

Tracks: The Girl I Left Behind Me; McNabb’s Hornpipe; Cock of The North; Little Burnt Potato; Rockin’ Fiddle; Spanish eyes; St. Ann’s Reel; My Bonnie Lassie; Ripple Rock Jig; Buffalo Gals; Darlin’ Nellie Gray; Springtime In The Rockies
 

We taped this fine fiddle album without having any idea what we were going to title it. Because a sparkling new Ned Landry release would be a best-seller packaged in a brown paper bag we weren’t worried. But for the record, that’s the way it was.

The recording session went great guns. Ned was in top form and his rivaled wizardry carried the day. Never in my career have I managed such a thrilling day of music making.

We experienced but one hitch during the entire session and coincidentally that’s when the album got its name. Ned and the boys were fairly flying through “The Girl I Left Behind Me” when our technician noticed that a channel level was incorrect. While he adjusted the console the musicians relaxed and, inevitably, a gab-fest ensued.

“Why I bet as many people know The Girl I Left Behind Me as know Ned Landry,” quipped our drummer?

It came to us at once The Girl I Left Behind Me - a grand title for a toe-tappin’, foot stompin’ album of old tyme fiddle favourites. Everybody knows this mischievous ditty and the very thought of it provokes a smile.

The Girl I Left Behind Me includes as well as the title song eleven other fiddle favourites Ned Landry has never recorded before. We think it’s his most brilliant album to date.

Because Ned Landry is such a great artist and because his earlier albums have been so successful we know that’s saying a lot - nevertheless that’s what we think.

So sure are we, that we commend you to hours of listening pleasure with but one small reservation - Put a pillow on your tappin’ foot. You’re going to love Ned Landry’s The Girl I Left Behind Me so much you’ll keep the neighbours up.

Ben Weatherby

Ned Landry And His Fiddle, Arc 610

Tracks: Chinese Breakdown; Dale’s Beat; I’m Sending You A Big Boquet Of Roses; Lord Alexander’s Reel; Waltz Quadril; Silver Bells; Snow Deer; Rippling Water Jig; Paper Roses; Ontario Swing; Country Waltz; Down Yonder
 

Country Music in Canada goes back so far, but Ned Landry’s part goes back about as far as anyone’s history can. In the very early part of the ‘hungry thirties’, Ned was appearing over CHSJ Radio in Saint John, New Brunswick with an unknown group called “Don Messer’s Lumberjacks”.

In the years between, Don Messer has become a household word in Canada, and the fame of Ned Landry’s artistry has spread far and wide via recordings and CBC Network Radio and TV exposure. Ned is a former North American Fiddle Champ, has written dozens of fiddle tunes played everywhere a bow is resined, and occupies a unique ‘favorite son’ status with Maritimers.

Presently still making his home in Saint John, Ned appears in Toronto frequently, and this year joined two other renowned Canadian Country greats, Hank Snow and Wilf Carter in a special CBC-TV feature on country music.

It’s been a long way and at times a rough trip from the thirties, but Ned Landry shows the style that made him famous and this his first Arc album. 

More Ned Landry Fiddle Favorites, Arc A650 - 1968

Ned Landry, fiddle; Bill Gibbs, bass; Rolly Chambers, rhythm guitar; Bill Bartlett, drums

Produced by Ben Weatherby.

Tracks: Hillbilly Calypso; Irish Washerwoman; Blue Skirt Waltz; Old Man And The Old Woman; Red Wing; Rag Time Annie; Earl Mitton’s Breakdown; Good Nite Irene; Uncle Jim’s Jig; Crooked Stove Pipe; La Golondrina Waltz; Soldiers Joy
 

It’s hard to find an old time fiddle fan anywhere who isn’t familiar with Ned Landry’s work. Ned has been in show business for as long as he can remember, and played with the original Don Messer group when that band was appearing over CHJS radio in Saint John, N.B. For numerous years after Don Messer moved to Charlottetown and then to Halifax, Ned remained in New Brunswick as leader of the “Maritime Farmers” TV group and his own band, “The New Brunswick Lumberjacks”.

Beginning in the 1950s, Ned’s distinctive style was heard over CBC network radio for a number of program series, and his guest shots on Don Messer’s Jubilee have been seen from coast to coast. He now appears frequently in Toronto and Montreal between jaunts ‘back east’, and last year became an exclusive artist with the release of his first album.

In this second group of fiddle favorites, Ned includes his own composition “Hillbilly Calypso” as well as some grand old tunes, such as “Uncle Jim’s Jig”, “Old Man and The Old Woman”, and “Irish Washerwoman”. If you’re a Ned Landry fan, and who isn’t, this album is a must. 

Ned Landry - The Singing Fiddler, Landry Records LP 101 - 1977

Ned Landry, fiddle & vocals; Fran Rooney, Steel Guitar; Eddie Burton, Bass; Allison Inch, Fiddle; Dave Sherwood, drums

Produced by Ned Landry; Engineered by Sonny Weyman, Recorded Live, in concert at Yvon Durelle's Fishermen's Club in Baie Ste. Anne, New Brunswick. Manufactured at RCA Ltd, Smiths Falls, Ontario

Tracks: Stompin' Tom Connors; Our Pet Suzette; Waltzing in the Garden; Don McKinnon, the Fighting Sailor; Happy Time; Our Beatiful Canadian Home; The Yvon Durelle Shuffle; The Club XL Song; Celina; Love Me; Hillbilly Calypso; Sabath Day With Our Lord

I got to know Ned Landry quite well a year and a half ago on a trip to Nashville.

He is a quiet, unassuming man who places his home and family above everything else; in my experience, a rare trait for a man who has been in the music business all his life, was three times North American Fiddling Champ, and is world renowned for his virtuosity with the fiddle.

Ned was signed to his first recording contract by Mr. Hugh Joseph in 1955, a man at that time manager of Artists and Repertoire for RCA Victor and who, as such, had been responsible for the signing of Wilf Carter, Hank Snow an d other world famous artists to the Canadian operation of RCA.

Ned, however, had been in show business since the late twenties as was already famous long before his first recording, this had come about through various weekly coast to coast radio programs on which he'd starred and a number of cross country tours he'd headed. He had also been a winner on the famous Colonel Bowes Talent Shows in the U.S.

His recordings presently are in the official archives of the Nashville Hall of Fame and in the National Library of Canada in Ottawa. He is also to be included in the forthcoming Encyclopedia of Canadian Music scheduled for publication in the near future.

The current recording on the new Landry label has been produced by Ned and was recorded, in part, live at Yvon Durelle's Club in Baie Ste. Anne, NB Canada.

It is an excellent recording for a first LP on the label and listeners will be surprised at the similarity of sound his band has to the great Spade Cooley bands of the forties.

I was very pleased to have been asked to do the liner notes for this album and I hope you will enjoy the many fine tunes and songs on it. All are originals and most are recorded here for the first time. In fact the only selection not written within the last couple of years is the perennial Landry favourite "Hillbilly Calypso" and even this has been given a new "breath of life".

So take this album home ... it's well worth the price ... sit back and listen to Ned sing and fiddle his way through an even dozen newly recorded tunes that will soon become familiar favourites of ours. He fiddles as good as ever and sings even better.

Gerry Taylor
The Telegraph-Journel,
Saint John, NB Canada, 1977

Special Thanks are extended by the artist to all people who had any part in this recording; to Raymond Doyle and Roy Lawson of Club XL and Mary Doyle, manager of the club for their encouragement; to Doug Green, country music historian who conducted my oral history taping in Nashville, to Bob Pinson, Director of Acquisitions for the Hall of Fame in Nashville for assuring my records a place in their archives; to Helmut Kalimann, editor of the Encyclopedia of Canadian Country Music for including my name among such illustrious company; to Edward B. Moogk, head of the Recorded Sound Collection Music Division; to Dave McCormack, manager of the Ernest Tubb Record Shop in Nashville, Tennessee for always keeping my records in stock and to Alan Hewart who took my records to Nashville for the first time; to Jim McCanstin.... my former drummer who retired after many years with my band and of course, to Mr. Hugh Joseph who started the whole recording side of my career back in 1955.


The Ned Landry Band, Prime Time Records PTR5 101 - 1981

Ned Landry, fiddle & vocals; Sonny Weyman, guitar; Professor Norm Hamilton, piano; Dave Sherwood, drums; Eddie Bertin, bass; Ray Caissie, steel guitar

Engineers: OwenVallis & Gig Morris; Recorded at Prime Time Studio, Sussex, NB

Tracks: MC announced contest win/ Ontario Swing; I Wonder Where Your Are Tonight; Waltzing In The Garden; Love Me; Stompin' Tom Connors; My Mother; Halifax Hop Polka; Cajun Fiddling On The Bayou; When Your Old Wedding Ring Was New; On A Hayride; Our Pet Suzette; Celina; Sabbath Day With Our Lord; Where Did You Go Fiddlin' Joe; Ode To Ned Landry
 

This is an anniversary album... the silver anniversary of a milestone in the career of one of Canada's most popular musicians, Ned Landry. It was twenty-five years ago this summer that Ned first won the North American Old-Time Fiddler's contest, an event you'll hear commemorated by the voice of the emcee who made that historic announcement. preserved on tape it opens side one of this album of great new instrumentals and songs.

It was the first of three such wins.

Actually Ned's involvement with entertainment goes back over fifty years. He first broke into the scene as a preteen dancer performing between movie reels in Saint John theatres. That was the late twenties. Soon he was performing as a harmonica player as well and was heard by Don Messer who asked him to join his New Brunswick Lumberjacks, the original Messer band.

He signed an RCA recording contract in 1955 and a profusion of single and album releases quickly followed making him Canada's most recorded instrumentalist. Seven of his Camden LP's are still in print, a testimony to the longevity of his appeal... it has been fifteen years since his last RCA recording session.

The recording you now hold is only his second LP release in a decade. And it is a gem. All but two are great new originals by Ned, a man still respected for his composing skill by contemporaries everywhere from Nashville to the bayous of Louisiana to the islands of Vancouver.

I'm sure you'll agree that this is his best recording ever. You get more than your money's worth... why on some bands you even get two and sometimes three Landry fiddles at once, a miracle made possible through the magic of expert and tasteful overdubbing.

Gerry Taylor
Folk-Country Music World
The Telegraph-Journal 1981


Easy Listening with Ned Landry, No label or serial Number - 2002

Ned Landry, vocals, fiddle, harmonica, acoustic guitar & drums; Ellen Nightingale, keyboard; Gordie Mitchell, saxophone; Laurence White, trumpet; Byron Gourley, dobro guitar; Harold Nightingale, bass, acoustic guitar, mandolin

Produced and arranged  by Ned Landry; engineered by Harold Nightingale; Recorded at Hillcrest Productions, St. George, New Brunswick

Tracks: Don't Forget To Buy A Poppy; Loyalist City Waltz; Come Back To The Valley; Al Inch's Waltz; Wreck of the Old '97; In The Garden; Third Bridge Waltz; Blue Velvet Band; Pages of Time; Let Me Call You Sweetheart; Moonlight and Roses; Springtime in the Rockies; Mexicali Rose; Home on the Range; Smile The While

I would like to thank Mildred, my wife and manager, for all of her wonderful support, and the musicians for their contribution to this recording. In February 2002, Ned Landry received the Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award at ECMA ceremonies held in Saint John, New Brunswick.

East Coast Music Awards


Best Of The Country Fiddlers, RCA Camden CL 50027

See Compilations


The Great Country Fiddlers, RCA KDML-7179-1-2 - 1991

See Compilations


More Fiddle Greats - Vol 2, Audat E2S - 142
See Compilations

Also see Ivan Hicks & Ned Landry: Generations

Etienne Larocque

O.Marcel.O, Musk MEL 10801 - circa 1981
Etienne Larocque, fiddle, guitar; Marcel Larocque, piano and percussion

Engineer: Gilles Olscamp; Recorded at Musk Sound Studios, Bathurst, New Brunswick

Tracks: Reel O-Marcel-O; Sunset Polka; Garnet’s Tune; Air To Joe, Margaret and Aunt Gen; Le reel du rocher de la baleine; Bridgetown Jig; Le reel du ruisseau Caribou; Scallop Shuckers Breakdown; La jigue des “Vinette”; The Hometown Hornpipe; La jigue de la pointe d’hirondelles; Le reel du pont de l’étang; Devil’s Dream

by Joseph Larocque, arranged by Etienne Larocque
 

Etienne Larocque. You’ll find him in Cap-Bateau, a small fisheries oriented community, on Lamèque Island in northeastern New Brunswick. He has been there since 1933 and by the age of 5, he was already a passionate fiddler. By the time his eleventh year came around, he was already making the locals swing on Saturday nights to the traditional sounds of his island. His talent was rapidly recognized and the easy listening sounds of his fiddle quickly made him followers.

Up to date, he was participated to over forty fiddlers’ gatherings, accumulating over 40 awards - of which 18 first placers. No wonder he’s Nouveau-Brunswick’s fiddle champion in 1980.

If you’re a Maritime fiddle lover, you have probably heard him in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, where he has been many times a finalist in the Maritime Fiddle Championships.

Not surprising that his fans recognize his great sensitivity and, whether an amateur or a connoisseur, they appreciate his style which we find already in Marcel, his son, who accompanies him with the piano, accordion and percussion.

Larocque’s passion has driven him to the cutting of a first long playing record in which you will find four of his own compositions with one traditional piece of music rearranged to his liking along with two rearrangements of Jos ‘Vinette’ à Honoré Larocque’s tunes.

Some of his repertoire includes a sound which we heard on the road, played by his friends Earl Mitton and Ivan Hicks, the whole thing fitted off with cuts borrowed from Peter Chaisson, Matilda Murdoch and Robert E. Jourdry.

This album was made by Etienne Larocque for you, lovers of grass roots and of the traditional sounds and it is hoped you will appreciate it.

Mel Lavigne

Also included on
'It's A Saturday Night Barn Dance' compilation, Rodeo Records RLPCD 8045, circa 1996
track 15: Great Eastern Reel

The first winner of the Shelburne Fiddle Contest, this is taken from Mel's only album

Leahy (Family)

The Leahy Family, Donlea A - 100

Chriss, piano, dancing; Julie, accordion, dancing; Denise, vocals, dancing; Siobheann, bass, fiddle, dancing; Donnell, fiddle, drums; Maria, fiddle, dancing; Francis, fiddle; Agnes, fiddle, dancing; Douglas, fiddle; Erin, fiddle, dancing

Produced by Vivienne Murphy; Engineer: Fred Peterson; Recorded at Kinck Sound, Toronto ON

Tracks: Back Up And Push; Maggie; Last Waltz; Clog, Jig and Reel; One Day At A Time; Carolyn's Concerto; County Sligo; Nellie Blye; Boogie Blues; Sad Over You; Family Act (Erin's Waltz); High Level Hornpipe
 

Excerpt From the Toronto Star by Pat Brennan.

Lakefield: Utah has the Osmonds and Austria has the von Trapps, but Canada has The Leahy Family. Not only do the 11 Leahy children easily outnumber the Osmonds and the Von Trapps, both of which were limited to 7, but they can probably outperform them as well. This unique musical group started 19 years ago when a pretty little step dancer named Julie MacDonnell asked Frank Leahy and his fiddle to stand in for her missing backup man at a stepdance competition. Julie won the competition and fell in love with Frank and their love for each other and for music produced the amazing musical Leahy children. Despite their wide acclaim and heavy schedule of appearances, the children still have daily chores on the farm. In the rambling farmhouse there is scarcely room for the over 100 trophies and plaques the Leahy Family has won at musical festivals and athletic events. They are professional entertainers and that requires plenty of rehearsal, although this family doesn't practice music, they live it.

               

There is much more to the Leahy Family than the local joke about having a child in every grade at the village school. This fiddling, stepdancing, singing, piano playing family has appeared on national television and travelled to Ireland twice on tour. The Leahys receive rave reviews from the press wherever they appear. It is an emotional moment when Frank and his wife Julie join the children on stage to receive a spontaneous ovation. This is their first album. Donnell - age 13 - does all the fiddling except for "Erin's Waltz" when 6 year old erin steps in to solo and then is joined by the rest of the ensemble. The Leahys are indeed the most delightful and unique family musical group that has ever appeared on stage in Canada. They guarantee to please everyone as they fiddle, sing and stepdance their way into your hearts.

Colum Quigley

Leahy, Virgin 72438-42955 23 - 1997

Donnell, fiddle; Erin, piano, keyboards; Siobheann, bass; Maria, acoustic guitar, mandolin; Frank, drums; Agnes, stepdancing; Doug, fiddle; Angus, fiddle

Produced by Lance Anderson; Engineered by Rick Andersen assisted by Rick Hazelwood and Jeff Cryderman; Mixed by Rick Andersen; Mastering: Rick Hazelwood; Mastered at Notability Audio Works, Toronto; Recorded at Cheery Beach Sound, Toronto ON

Tracks: B Minor; Cape Breton Medley; McBrides; The French; The call To Dance; Alabama; Don Messer Medley; Czardas; Colm Quigley; The Coulin
 

Biography

We grew up in a house filled with music. the first musical instruments that we were introduced to were the fiddle and the piano. Gradually other instruments found their way into the house and a band was born.

Eventually the original 'family act' of eleven brothers and sisters took to the road. Over time various band members left the group to pursue their own paths in life and as we evolved our focus has settled mainly on Donnell's FEROCIOUS fiddling talent. A talent he's been crafting since the age of three.

The Leahys as you will hear us have been described as Zany and Madcap, and it's true. We love music and each other and we love to play. Everything else comes after.

We hope you share our bliss.

B Minor: Jenny's Chickens / The Glasgow Reel: The first reel comes from a recording by Irish fiddler Cathal Hayden and is in the key of B Minor. Erin brought the second tune back from Co. Monoghan, Ireland.

Cape Breton Medley: Shetland Reels / Captain Campbell / Colom Breghach / The Old King George Strathspey / Kings Reel / Shetland Island Welcome / High Road To Linton / Devil's Dream: Like so many before her, Mom left Broadcove, Cape Breton, for far away Ontario. And lucky for us she never forgot where she came from.

McBrides: This piece comes from a deadly Irish band of the early 80s, Moving Hearts.

The French: George I Taylor / Marquis of Huntley / O'Dowd's Favourite / Star of Munster: These tunes have come to us via two brilliant French Canadian fiddlers - jean Carignan and Denis Lanctot.

The Call to Dance: Stepdancing is usually performed to music. We like to think of it as music - an instrument just like the fiddle, piano or drums.

Alabama: Alabama Jubilee / Bowing The Strings: We just thought we'd have a little fun.

Don Messer Medley: Don Messer's Breakdown / Mother's Reel / Johnny Wagner: A tribute to Dad's all time favourite super hero, fiddle player.

Czardas (Hungarian Dance): This is a piece we are constantly requested to play. Thus it's inclusion here.

Colm Quigley: King of Fairies / Traditional Strathspey / Colm Quigley: this medley is defined by the last reel. It was composed by Donnell in honour of a handsome dove from Ireland.

The Coulin: This is a hauntingly beautiful Irish lament.

Frank Leahy & Eduard Minevich

Bending The Bows, Take A Bow Music CD TABM-001, 1993

Frank Leahy, violin; Eduard Minevich, violin; Strings by the Take A Bow Orchestra conducted by Charles T Cozens

Produced by Charles T. Cozens; Engineer: John Hurlbut; Recorded at Manta Eastern Sound, Toronto, October, 1993

Tracks: Tea For Two; Jalousie; Dany Boy-Borodin Nocturne; Bach Double; Country Favourites; Tiger Rag; Fox Trot; Hot Country fiddle; Czardas; Orange Blossom Special

Bending The Bows

With full symphony accompaniment, concertmaster Eduard Minevich and fiddle champion Frank Leahy bow through 10 instrumental selections from light classical to jazz, blues, gypsy and down-home country favourites. The disc not only contrasts Minevich's Russian traditions and Leahy's Irish heritage, but also highlights the versatility of the violin, the fiddle, and the two musicians.

Eduard Minevich

Born in the former USSR, Eduard Minevich has been the concertmaster of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony since 1987. He is much in demand as a soloist with orchestras, performing a mixture of jazz, gipsy and classical in his pops shows "From Jazz to Gipsy" and "Romancing the Violin".

Frank Leahy

Canadian National Fiddling champion Frank Leahy suffers no culture shock when he slips from down-home clogs, jigs and reels to contemporary music including jazz, swing, traditional folk music and classical. Session fiddle player on "Prime Time Country", Frank has performed from coast to coast in Canada and the United States.

Tea For Two: This 1924 composition by Vincent Youmans, introduced in the musical "No, No Nanette", is at first a genteel invitation to dance that answers itself with exuberance when it takes to the floor. It opens with rich melodic lines featuring the two violinists together. After solos - Minevich in the tradition of Joe Venuti and Leahy reminiscent of Stephane Grapelli - the violinists alternate three more times before reuniting in the concluding duet.

Jalousie: Drama and intensity are highlighted in this gypsy tango, first published in 1925. Without warning, the cadenza strikes with glissandi and arpeggio runs. While the orchestra offers the melody, Minevich plays obbligato passages in an improvisational style. The piece ends with the violin soaring into the high register.

Danny Boy - Borodin Nocturne: The Irish background of Leahy and the Russian of Minevich are juxtaposed in this piece. Leahy's violin is featured in the classic Irish anthem and, in the second chorus is complemented by Minevich. The orchestra escorts the listener into the melting tenderness of the celebrated Nocturne, played by Minevich. This third movement of the String Quartet No. 2 by Alexander Borodin (1885) was popularized by the broadway operetta "Kismet" in 1953.

Bach Double: The versatility of the violin and both musicians is celebrated in Bach's Concerto in D Minor for Two Violins and Orchestra. Following the traditional opening of the 18th Century composition, the recording is flavoured by Minevich's gypsy stylings and then Leahy's country rock. The two musicians trade licks through blues and then jazz stylings. The piece includes a quote from Crieg's "Peer Gynt".

Country Favourites: In this medley, Leahy offers a unique interpretation of seven of country's all-time greatest hits. He spans the decades with "House of the Rising Sun", "You Were Always On My Mind", "To All the Girl's I've Loved Before", "The Tennessee Waltz", "Crazy", Snow Bird", and "Thank God I'm A Country Boy".

Tiger Rag: Together, Minevich and Leahy open this breathless ragtime that Jelly Roll Morton claims to have assembled from schottisches, quadrilles, and minuets. After trading short licks, Minevich and Leahy are featured, respectively, in longer solos. Following a modulation, they trade improvs again before finishing together.

Fox Trot: Clifford Crawley wrote this charming fox trot for the clarinet and Minevich adapted it for the violin. The orchestration, also by Crawley, is reminiscent of Walton's "Facade". The violin plays a continuous and graceful melody while each instrument of the orchestra interjects short phrases. The result is a light and airy piece that evokes nostalgia for the early 1900's when this ballroom dance became popular.

Hot Country Fiddle: Leahy displays a variety of fiddle styles in this medley. "Maple Sugar" (an Eastern Canadian fiddle anthem by Ward Allen), "Wally's Jig" (down east), "MacPherson's Lament" (Scottish), "My Expression of Affection for You" (Ottawa Valley waltz), "Frank's Clog (Irish Clog), "Karly's Edge" (French Canadian), and "Back Up And Push" (a bluegrass standard featuring double bowing). Leahy wrote three of the selections including "My Expression of Affection for You", for his mother, "Wally's Jig" for an older friend who encouraged him as a young musician, and "Karly's Edge" for another friend who shared his love of fiddling.

Czardas: Minevich opens this Hungarian dance with a cadenza in the style of Paganini. After the orchestra vamps, he and Leahy trade for 32 bars each, join for a duet of 16, and then trade again before the orchestra intercedes for a slow middle section. Minevich reintroduces the gypsy style and then Leahy, the country. The piece finishes with gypsy fire.

Orange Blossom Special: Leahy and Minevich offer a different interpretation of Ervin Rouse's fiddle hit by mixing with the classical "Flight of the Bumble Bee" by Rimsky-Korsakov. Leahy opens the piece and then Minevich joins in with "Flight of the Bumble Bee". The orchestra adds a quote from "Take the A-Train" by Duke Ellington. In a most unusual combination, Leahy double bows while Minevich offers his left-hand pizzicato and they conclude in a duet.


Donny LeBlanc

Traditional Cape Breton Music – Vol 1, World WRC1-5741, circa 1985

Donny LeBlanc, fiddle; André LeBlanc, piano; Gélase Larade, guitar

Tunes: Dillon Brown reel / The Old Torn Petticoat reel / Wayne LeBlanc reel / Arthur Muise reel; André LeBlanc jig / The Yellow Flail jig / The Miller of Glanmire jig; Archduke John of Austria strathspey / Sally Kelly reel / Dougie MacDonald reel / Howie MacDonald reel; Colonel reel / Tie The Bonnet reel / Temple Hill reel; Lady Mary Stopford strathspey / Auld Stewart’s Back Again reel / The Cottar’s Wife reel / Gabe Arsenault’s reel; The Boys of the Town jig / The Old Man’s Delight jig / The Dandy Bonnet jig / Cronin’s Favorite jig; The French Acadian reel / Gélase Larade reel / Maybelle & Cameron Chisholm reel; Miss Ross strathspey / Buddy MacMaster reel / Miss Whiteford reel; The Port Caledonia jig / The Joy of My Life jig / How She Got Up in the Morning jig; Bonnybridge strathspey / The Millburn reel / Blair Athole reel

Donny LeBlanc

Donny showed a natural response to Cape Breton Scotch and Irish violin music when at only three years of age, he would rub together two pieces of kindling from behind the wood stove as he listened to Scottish Strings on CJFX radio. He had seen the now late Placide Odo from across the street play violin and enjoyed imitating him. Mr. Odo was likely his first influence but still, Donny was the only one in the neighbourhood who would, as early as three, quietly sneak away and rub his two wood sticks siting alongside Mr. Odo as he reeled away the tunes. Later, Arthur Muise became another strong influence, and of course there were Winston Fitzgerald, the Chisholms and Buddy MacMaster, just to name a few.

At 10 years of age, Donny had a lend of a mandolin which was left over the house after a late party and in two or three weeks, as playing well enough to set your toes tapping quite naturally. Then along the way, he picked up the guitar which he occasionally uses today to chord the best of Cape Breton’s violinists who visit a popular music spot in Cheticamp, The Doryman Beverage Room on Saturday afternoons.

At age 15, Donny finally gave the violin a try in 1970 and played his first solo at the Glendale Concert in 1973. Soon thereafter, he took enough violin lessons to use reading as a powerful tool in learning and composing tunes. Donny has since become very popular in Cape Breton and abroad with his lively and distinctive sound.

André LeBlanc

André is a first cousin to Donny and has been playing piano with him for about ten years. He inherits much of his talent for music from his father and has developed into an excellent pianist, guitarist, stepdancer, and can play a few mean tunes on the fiddle as well when in the right mood.

Gélase Larade

Gélase has been accompanying Donny for over eleven years on the guitar. He is well known for his steady timing and strong blending strum as exhibited on this recording.

All three are natives of Cheticamp, a French Acadian community with a strong love for the traditional Cape Breton fiddle where other well-known artists such as Arthur Muise, Marcel Doucet and Joe Cormier hail from.

Special Thanks To:

Johnny M. Aucoin, Howie MacDonald, Joey Beaton, Wayne LeBlanc, Sandra Lefort, Kathleen LeBlanc, Management and Staff of the Doryman Beverage Room, and each and everyone who supports our music.

Eloi LeBlanc

Eloi et Son Violon, les Productions Acadiennes LPA 1001 - 1977

Eloi LeBlanc, Violon; Laura Boudreau, piano; Hugh Brown, guitar; Yvon Cormier, basse; Bernard Bourgeois, drums

Producer: Pierre LeBlanc; Direction: Donatien Gaudet; Engineer: Ernest LeBlanc; Recorded at Son Excellence Sound

Tracks: Le reel oublié; Reel des Maritimes Farmers; Le coq pi la poule; La p’tite chatte; Reel à Narcisse à John; Reel à Eric à Théotime à Six-pouces; Premier prix à Shédiac; Train de Bouctouche; Le reel du pendu; Reel des noces; La gigue des p’tites filles; Reel des Beaumont; Reel de la galarie; Gigue à Thaddée; Reel à Louis Cormier; Le reel de l’hiver; Ann Murray’s Reel; Hoedown à Eloi
 

Les gens qui connaissent Eloi Leblanc l’identifient à son violon. N’a-t-il pas été, pendant une bonne partie de sa vie, le violonneux qui animait la plupart des soirées, des noces, etc. de toute la vallée de Memramcook, au Nouveau-Brunswick? Le répertoire d’Eloi est presque illimité> Fait remarquable, toutefois, c’est qu’Eloi est l’auteur de plusiers ‘reels’ et gigues qu’il avait lui-même presque oubliés. On ne sera donc pas surpris de voir en tête de liste le ‘Reel Oublié’.

Pendant un certain temps, Eloi jouait du violon au programme radiophonique des Maritimes Farmers. Cela explique pourquoi il nonna ‘Reel des Maritimes Farmers’, un pièce qu’il eut l’occasion d’y jouer régulièrement. Un jour, une dame lui apprit une nouvelle tounne. On appelait cette dame la “p’tite chatte”.

Narcisse à John, lui-même violonneux, était le grand-père maternal d’Eloi.

Thèotime à Six-pouces, violonneux comme le précédent, était fils de Narcisse, et donc oncle d’Eloi. Lors d’un concours à Shédiac, NB, Eloi gagna le primier prix avec une tounne dont il ne se rappelle plus le non. Le train de Bouctouche c’est nui autre que le célèbre “Orange Blossom Special” joué à la manière d’Eloi.

Eloi jouait souvent aux noces. Son Reel des noces était un favori de tous. Depuis assez longtemps, Eloi a élu domicile à Beaumont, chez sa soeur Laura, qui l’accompagne, depuis, au piano. C’est là qu’il composa plusiers de ses plus belles pièces, comme le “Reel des Beaumont”, le “Reel du l’hiver” ainsi que la gigue qu’un certain Thaddée (ami d”Eloi) aimait particulièrement. Une des pièces qu’Eloi composa fut souvent jouée par Don Messer, le célèbre violonneux des Maritimes. Depuis ce temps elle porte le nom de “Ann Murray’s Reel”. Enfin, lorsqu’Eloi jouait dans le groupe de Kid Baker, il lui vint à l’idée ce composer qui fut appelé par la suite, “Hoedown à Eloi”.

Scottie LeBlanc

The Fiddlin’ French Canadian Scot, Celtic CX 29 - late 1950s

Scotty Le Blanc, fiddle; Marie Maclellan, piano

Tracks: Colonel Stockwell March / Miss Dale's Strathspey / Duntroon Reel; The Banks of Avon / Mary Jane Davis Strathspey / Blink Bonnie Reel; The Wedding Jig / Prince Arthur's First Jig / The Princess Alice's Jig; The Queen's Welcome To Deeside Strathspey / Pigeon On The Gate / Miss Betty Ann Gordon Reel; Miss Stevenson's Strathspey / Mrs. Crombie's Reel / Delwhinnce Strathspey / McLaren Reel; Scottish Reform / Mrs. Margaret McaInnes; Erchless Castle March / Colin Cameron's Kilt Strathspey / Bonnie Nellie Reel; Miss Oswald Strathspey / Tommy McQueston Reel / Cape Breton Ceilidh Reel; John Wilmot Jig / Jamie Gow Jig / Boston Coldian Club Jig; British Press Slow Air / Mayen House Jig; Glen Trum Strathspey / Boys of the Hilltop Reel

Here is a classic example of a French Canadian boy brought up in the Highlands of Cape Breton who is not only a fine Scottish Fiddler but is well on his way to becoming one of the all time great exponents of the music of the Scot.

Realizing the controversy this album will have among Cape Bretoners, the President of the company, George Taylor (himself a Scot born in Scotland) has made this statement: “When Dan R. MacDonald brought Mr. LeBlanc to the studios for an audition, I had misgivings about such a release being acceptable to our Scottish followers - however, after listening to Mr. LeBlanc play I was prepared to stake my reputation that none couple play the fiddle with such feeling unless deep down inside beat the heart of a Scot, perhaps reincarnated by the soul of Cape Breton Island.”

Scottie LeBlanc was born at Margaree and commenced playing the fiddle at a very early age and studied as a pupil of Jim MacDonald (Professor) of North Sydney.

He is married and has three children.

Marie MacLellan, one of the famous MacLellan Trio, is an accompished Pianist and well known throughout the Martimes. She has appeared many times on Radio and Television.

Fiddlin’ Scottie Le Blanc, Celtic CX 41 - late 1950s

Tracks: Lady Douglas of Bothwell - New Fiddle - Scotty’s Favourite, jigs; The Strathlorne March; Donald Sutherland - The MacFarlane’s, reels; Mr Fletcher Strathspey; Mrs Augustus Murphy - The Long Neck, reels; Art Campbell’s Strathspey; Black Rory’s Farewell Strathspey - Lady Mary Stopford’s Reel; Lady Menzie of Castle Menzie Strathspey; Willie glennie reel; The Maids of Arrocher (slow Air); Patrick Duff Strathspey - Michael A McLean Reel; The Golden Rod; Don’t Be Teasing - Lassie ann Seller, jigs; Sir George Abercrombie Strathspey; Boisdale - Marr Lodge, reels; Trip to glencoe March; Black Bird Reel; Miss Jessie Smith Strathspey; Miss Johnson’s - Glengarry, reels; The Teacher’s Piano Lesson (slow air); Miss Baker Sthrathspey - Dr Robertson Reel; Rose Wood Dirk Strathspey; Sir George MacKenzie’s Reel - Old Timer Reel
 

Here is a classic example of a French Canadian boy brought up in the Highlands of Cape Breton who is not only a fine Scottish Fiddler but is well on his way to becoming one of the all time great exponents of the music of the Scot.

Realizing the controversy this album will have among Cape Bretoners, the President of the company, George Taylor (himself a Scot born in Scotland) has made this statement: “When Dan R. MacDonald brought Mr. LeBlanc to the studios for an audition, I had misgivings about such a release being acceptable to our Scottish followers - however, after listening to Mr. LeBlanc play I was prepared to stake my reputation that none couple play the fiddle with such feeling unless deep down inside beat the heart of a Scot, perhaps reincarnated by the soul of Cape Breton Island.”

Scottie LeBlanc was born at Margaree and commenced playing the fiddle at a very early age and studied as a pupil of Jim MacDonald (Professor) of North Sydney.

He is married and has three children.

The Fiddlers of Cape Breton, Celtic SCS 57 (Compatible Sterio)

See Compilations
 


J. B. Ledoux

Old Native And Métis Fiddling in Manitoba, Vol 2, Falcon FP - 287


AnneLederman

7 Cats:Falcon FP - 003 - 2000

Anne Lederman, fiddle, feet, piano, voice; Julie Schryer, piano; Sasha Luminsky, accordion; BenGrossman, bodhran; Ian Bell, guitar; Artie Roth, bass

Produced by Anne Lederman; Engineers: Rich Greenspoon and Glen Solway; recorded at the Toronto Waldorf School

Tracks: Cry of the Loon: Cry of the Loon / Two Red River Jigs; And We, In Dreams: Sitting In the Stern of the Boat / Calum Breughagh / Jenny Nettles / Contradition Reel; Can We Still See The Forest: The Oak Tree / The Beech Tree / Sweeney's Buttermilk / Cronin's; Grandy's Devil Tunes; That Klezmer Thing: A Hora / Bulgar Set; A Long Way from Popeye: Sweeney's / Smith's Favourite / Coolie's / Mason's Apron; Grexton Drive: Barb's Mum's / Piano / Carl's Fiddle; What Was That?: Anne's Bow / Helen's Jig / Pudjushko; Jules et Jean: La Sauvagesse / Liffey Banks / Le Poteau Blanc; Three Sisters; The Home Waltz (song)

I woke up one morning in Saskatoon, many years ago, and thought I'd like to play the fiddle. I had never had this thought before. I had hardly even seen anyone play the fiddle. What did I know but that there were too many guitar players around already. Since then, I have found myself leaping into one musical whirlpool after another, turning with whatever tides I found there and learning the history of the world as I went.

The way I see it, the fiddle is the true national symbol of Canada. After all, the beaver has done its work - the trees are felled and the dams are built (not to mention the fish caught, the coal dug, the buffalos shot, and our First Nations moved and removed). But, funnily enough, for 3 centuries a stick of horsehair and a 4-string box have continued to sing who wee are, no matter who or how many have chosen to listen.

"kiduchige, kiduchige....." (play!)

1. Cry of the Loon: "Lacking any other instruments with which to tune their fiddles, the Métis use the cry of the loon and the bellow of a rutting moose..."

The Cry of the Loon / Two Red River Jigs: In my childhood home of Winnipeg, if you close your eyes, you can still hear the screeching wheels of Red River carts and taste of the pemmican on your tongue. These tunes all come from Teddy Boy Houle of Ebb and Flow, Manitoba - two versions of the Red River Jig, preceded by an unnamed gem I have christened from one of my favourite quotes.

2. And We, In Dreams: "And we, in dreams behold the Hebrides. But still the blood is strong, the heart is highland..."

Sitting In the Stern of the Boat / Calum Breughagh / Jenny Nettles / Contradiction Reel: I found myself in Cape Breton for the first time in 1977. It's still there, and I'm still here, but I like to think we have a relationship.

3. Can We Still See The Forest?: "In old Ireland, we'd nothin' but praties, but here we've got praties and pork."

The Oak Tree / The Beech Tree / Sweeney's Buttermilk / Cronin's: What can I say, I just like trees. Maybe Charlie and Johnny (Cronin) did too. These tunes all came from Bulmar and Sharpley's 'Dance Music of Ireland', in which the third one is called Charlie Lennon's, having been written for him by Brandan McGlinchey.

4. Grandy's Devil Tunes: "Sometimes I play a tune five different ways, the same tune, I just play this one outside the next one... just like it's lost..." Grandy.

"Devil Tunes" are ones with the strings 'changed', the ones in different tunings. Grandy Fagnan was a magnificent man - a Métis fiddler from Camperville, Manitoba who spoke 10 languages, played "old Scotch reels" and was responsible for some of the most incredible events of my life, though he never knew it.

5. That Klezmer Thing:

A Hora / Bulgar Set: These are from the Kamen Dance Folio, that wonderful New World collection of Old World tunes in the Eastern European tradition. My heartfelt thanks to Sasha, who has given so much to his adopted country.

6. A Long Way From Popeye:

Sweeney's / Smith's Favourite / Coolie's / Mason's Apron: Three Irish hornpipes, the first two from Allen's Irish Fiddler, the 3rd from Bulmer and Sharpley, joined with a world traveler and a few personal variations.

7. Grexton Drive

Barb's Mums / Piano / Carl's Fiddle: Two tunes of mine from the Grexton experience, my home away from home. I think of Carl Grexton as the grand high spirite of Grandview, Manitoba. Carl knew a good tune when he heard one; it didn't matter what colour, size, shape or religion the person playing it was. In this country that means everything.

8. What Was That?

Anne's Bow / Helen's Jig / Pudjushko: "Anne's Bow" was written by my old friend and Muddy York compatriot, Ian Bell. I wrote "Helen's Jig" for Helen Porter's storytelling play, "My Grandmother's Mouth", especially for her attempt to bridge the world of her mother, her grandmother, and herself. Later, it seemed to lend itself to a Macedonian groove and from there to a real padjushko. I thank Tim Rice for that one and for opening the doors to Eastern Europe for me.

9. Jules Et Jean

La Sauvagesse / Liffey Banks / Le Poteau Blanc: The first tune is from Jules Verret, the last two from the legendary Jean Carignan. Carignan always said there were four great influences in his life - his Québécois mentor, Joseph Allard, Irish icons James Morrison and MichaelColeman from Sligo, and the great J. Scott Skinner of Scotland. But no one plays them like Carignan.

10. Three Sisters: "I don't know whose sisters they were, they were someone's... old Scotch reels" (Grandy)

More tunes from Grandy. These three have been keeping company for a long time in Métis country. The last one is a version of Na Caber Feigh, an old piping standard. There are various theories about the other two.

11. The Home Waltz

A Reg Bouvette tune married to some Ian Bell words. The maple trees are both yellow and red in this one.

Fiddlesong, Falcon Productions - FP005 - 2002 - CD

Anne Lederman, 4 & 5 string fiddles, vocal, pianos, feet, talking drum, jawharp; Artie Roth, bass; George Koller, bass; Randy Kempf, bass; Ian Bell, guitar, button accordion, harmonica; Njacko Backo, kalimba, grosse caisse, shakers; Kwazi Dunjo, Kpanlogo drums; Sasha Luminsky, accordion; Debashis Sinha, udu, ripinke, tumba, rigg, darabukka; Tom Leighton, piano accordion; Colleen Allen, soprano sax; Adam Solomon, electric guitar; Rich Greenspoon, drums

Produced and engineered by John Switzer; Recorded at Orchard Sound, #9 Sound, Sterling Sound, Fearless Films

Tracks: Tamarack'er Down; African Suite: The Call / The Libation / Crooked Waltzing / Crin Crin; J'ai mis les cordes (music trad / words); Carl's Waltz; Smothered in Smoke; Cactus and Cranky Cats; An t'altan dubh / You Tell Me; The Fiddler's Alphabet / Carl Grexton; Will's Reel;

www.annelederman.com

It's taken a long time, folks, but for someone who has spent most of her life immersed in one tradition or another, finally, I'm learning how to get those traditions talking to each other. This is only the beginning...

Tamarack'er Down - Originally written as a commission for the Canadian Children's Dance Theatre, I wanted to invoke the spirit of backwoods Canada in various musical manifestations, from a bit of celtic scat, to a crooked jig, a jawharp / mouth music interlude and finally, a full blown, flat-out danceband. But this band has kalimba, darabukka, udu and djembe in it.

African Suite - First performed for the New World Music Concert series in Toronto, I used the Ghanaian rhythm Otofo (a girl's coming-of-age ceremony) as the basis for the whole suite. Elements of it appear in various guises throughout, but this celebration belongs to the fiddle as much as the drums. The Call: A west African celebration begins with the Master Drummer's call. All the musicians who hear it know exactly how to respond. The Libation: In which a whole lot of perfectly good liquor is poured on the ground as an offering to the earth. Here, it seemed natural to marry the rhythm with an old Métis version of a Scottish tune, Drops of Brandy. The tune gradually morphs into the rhythm of one of the Otofo drum parts. Crooked Waltzing: Here, elements of the Otofo rhythm are played on dono (talking drum) as a continuous ground, while an original melody floats overtop and inspires solo flights from the bass and 5-string fiddle. Crin Crin: The main bell part becomes a chord rhythm and a melodic counterpoint to a sort of 'African reel'. Crin crin is an old French prairie word, not always a very complimentary one, for the fiddle.

J'ai mis les cordes à mon violon - This was originally a 'jiggy' Franco-Manitoba dance song which I learned from Marcien Ferland's excellent collection, Chansons à répondre du Manitoba. I slowed it down, translated the verses and added a few words of my own.

Carl's Waltz - This one comes to you direct from one of my favourite fiddlers, Carl Grexton of Grandview, Manitoba, who passed on in 1999 at the grand old age of 88. I believe that he wrote it, although he would never say for sure. He never named it, so I've named it for him.

Smothered in Smoke - Two tunes from Manitoba Métis tradition, only the first one has a name - in Saulteaux it's Kakashkabatek, which literally translates as 'smothered in dust', a special sort of prairie experience when dancing outside on dry ground.

Cactus and Cranky Cats - I had a cat for 20 years who was never particularly friendly to anyone and often left legacies of his cantankerousness in your skin. Then, after pricking myself repeatedly on some cactus plants I brought back from Tuscon, it seemed that all these thorny creatures I lived with had a lesson for us arrogant humans who think we can tame them. The music was partly inspired by my stint with Siyakha, a South African township jive band from Toronto.

An t'altan dubh / You Tell Me - A traditional Cape Breton milling song, this time, turned into an air. The transcription of the words is from Helen Creighton and Calum MacLeod's Gaelic Songs of Nova Scotia. Dedicated to all those who face the floodwaters of the Red River Valley, as I did in my youth; and in memory of the first intrepid Scots to settle there in 1812, who made the journey all the way down from Hudson's Bay, with a piper in the lead.

The Fiddler's Alphabet / Carl Grexton / Will's Reel - Well, somebody had to do it, write an ode to the weird, wild and wacky world of Canadian fiddling. It's not your usual alphabet song with nice clear "A is for..." lines, but it's all there, nonetheless. The song is followed by a most excellent tune of Brian Pickell's written for the fore mentioned Carl Grexton. This is wrapped up with a tune of mine written for the climactic scene of the Blyth Theatre's The Outdoor Donnellys, the true-life adventure of which Will Donnelly scares away his potential attackers by playing the fiddle. Who could ask for a better story?

Thank you: To all the musicians on this recording for their wonderful playing, to John for his endless patience and good humour, to the Toronto Waldorf School for allowing me to record there, to George for making it deeper, to Njacko Backo, Kwazi Dunjo, Joseph Ashong, Carl Grexton, Lawrence Flett and Teddy Boy Houle for sharing some of their cultural 'secrets' with me, to my partner Christopher and my children Erkia and Gabrielle for living with the whole damn thing, and to everyone who supports the making of real music in Canada as a defiantly creative act.

Roger Légaré

Festival Western, London 7-611-0

See Compilations

Fred Levasseur

Old Native And Métis Fiddling in Manitoba, Vol 1, Falcon FP - 187

Bernie Ley & Joe MacDougal

The Fiddlers of Cape Breton, Celtic SCS 57 (Compatible Sterio)
See Compilations

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KitchenAid Stand Mixer Pasta Attachment Set Sur La Table
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