JACK HAYES AWARD
A Franco-Ontario quartet of traditional old time music, their album 'Old Tyme Fiddling' is superb. With feet and fiddle, mandolin and great moving rhythm, they are unpretentious and straight-away with their approach.
A complete album of Canadian railway songs that cover PEI, Hudson's Bay, BC, Ontario and all kinds of lines. Along with accompanist Grit Laskin, Luft and Rogers present a great recording of folk songs for history and railway buffs.
Peacock collected in the late 50's and the 60's a body of work that is stupendous. Published in three volumes, his collection remains the single most definitive of Newfoundland folk music ever assembled.
A did-it-themselves project, this is a collection of 9 excellent Cree fiddlers from Moosonee to the James Bay coast of Québec. Ranging in ages from 19 to into their 70s, this collection brings a collective spirit that comes through the speakers really well.
I purchased this cassette in Labrador City, an inland mining town from where they're from. The spirit and harmonies do great justice to these songs collected from the pens of Labrador poets.
Ossie's store is more than just a store: it's a folk scene. This is a meeting place where you meet and press palms. Not only does he service the c & w crowd, this is the best place to purchase down-east music. The Saturday afternoon jams are great! Real people just playing music. It's a hangout all right, because Ossie cares. He's also a walking encyclopedia of Canadian musical information.
Orenstien came to Canada to pursue her interests in traditional Québécois folk music. She collected and she played and taught others how to play 'their' tunes. She is spoken of with the highest degree of sincerity and has done her share to ensure that the traditional music of Québec survives.
She's a darling on stage and has done more to popularize the Cape Breton fiddle than amongst the kids of her generation. Niece of the legendary Buddy MacMaster, she recorded her first album, '4 on the Floor', when she was just 16. She has appeared at folk festivals around the world, including the Smithsonian Festival in Washington, D.C.
The founder of the Wilno Express, Barney writes about real people and real things in his Madawaska Valley home. The local post office, a drug bust gone bad, outsmarting the cops, local lore, and life off the land. Just him and his accordion and a lifetime worth of stories and songs.
I really didn't want to give him this award - I figured one Porcupine per person was enough. But this song is just too good. Absolutely Canadian, working class life in Northern Ontario and a great polka to boot.
Glen has tirelessly worked at cementing relationships between Toronto's budding young and elder singer/songwriters. He is a friend of almost everybody and has been instrumental in developing the careers of many local artists.
She wasn't the greatest but she was getting very good. And it hurts when one of your own is taken from you the way that she was. Karen died in a bicycle-truck collision earlier this year and it shocked the local community. Her songs were all that she left behind, in a posthumously released album of her work.
Having spent months in Québec learning from the masters, Wood got together with Cutting to create one of the best duo rhythm teams that play traditional music of Québec and the British Isles. With Marcel Messervier's blessings, they are extraordinary.
Picture: The Toronto Maple Leaf hockey club is in its first NHL semi-finals series in light-years. They are up against the Los Angeles Kings. These 3 Ugly Guys record a "Let's Beat The Shit Out Of 'Em", rah rah song that predicts that the Kings will be on the golf course within the week, only to see their team defeated in the seventh and final game. Puts you to shame somehow!
Messervier - often called Don Messer-vier because of his love for Messer tunes - is the foremost builder of accordions in Québec. From his home village of Montmagney, home of the Festival Accordion Mondial, he performs for home crowds, hating attention and people asking him to record. He feels that he cannot do justice to the music the way that his father did which certainly is not true.
Lynn, a founding member of Toronto's long-lived Irish-Celtic band Tip Splinter, has been producing low-budget programs for the Cable network for years. How many times local artists have been told that they were recently seen on TV because of Jonathan's shows? Just goes to show ya.
He recorded 13 songs for Canadian Music Sales in the 1960s which chronicled the days of the Donnelley feud in south-western Ontario. He was also the star of the CKNX Barndance and is now founder of the CKNX Barndance Historical Museum in Wingham, Ontario. The Barndance was Canada's answer to the Grand Ole Opry and featured all of our greatest stars from Gordy Tapp to Ward Allen.
With the passing of Noel Dinn this summer, it didn't take long to consider his gifts to all of us, namely familiarity with people list Emile Benoit and their music. Having spent years with Pamela fishing for tunes to preserve and transmit to the next generation, it was decided to name this heritage award after him. It was also fitting that both he and Pamela should be the first recipients of this award.
Graham Townsend is undisputedly Canada's best fiddler. Having outgrown all his teachers when still just a kid, he went on to compose tunes for Don Messer while in his early teens. He then went on to win every major fiddle championship in the country. After recording dozens of albums, it is only right that he be recognized for his outstanding achievements. And then there's Eleanor! She began recording under the name Moorehead till she was introduced to Graham at a fiddle contest. They were soon married and became the first family of Canadian fiddle. Eleanor works hard at preserving the old tyme feel to the fiddle and teaches classes in Toronto Monday nights.
Bill MacNeil produced the 'Voice of the Pioneer'' program for CBC for many years in the 60s and 70s. It brought him into the homes of thousands of ordinary Canadians. They all had a story to tell and every week they could be heard across the nation telling of their lives growing up with young Canada. This album has some of those priceless relics.
Born on the northern penninsula of Newfoundland in an Acadian community, Emile Benôit began playing fiddle when he was very young. He had many occupations, too many to list here, but it was later in life that he became known world-wide for his fiddling. With the recognition he received after coming into contact with Figgy Duff, Emile was in demand to perform at festivals across Newfoundland and eventually around the world. He passed away in 1992 leaving many a sad eye and a gleeful heart. His humour, sparkle and love of life affect everyone he came into contact with. When the girls would pass by he would ask, "Are you married?" He would then retort, "I'm not but my wife is," and laugh.