Canadian Journal for Traditional Music (1995)

Editorial Notes

Edith Fowke

Gary R. Butler of the Humanities Department in York University's Faculty of Arts surveys French-language traditional music in Newfoundland. Based on his field research of 1979-85, Butler's report focuses on repertoires and performing contexts of outstanding singers and instrumentalists.

Brian Cherwick, who is completing a Ph.D. in Modern Languages and Comparative Studies as well as Music at the University of Alberta, provides an overview of the Ukrainian tsymbaly (hammered dulcimer), its construction, tunings, and uses. Emphasizing recent developments, Cherwick shows how the instrument has become a symbol of Ukrainian identity in Canada, in contrast to Ukraine itself, where the bandura has maintained this role.

Zak Morgan, a folk-music researcher in New York City, details the influence of Canadian guitar-maker Jean-Claude Larrivée. An innovator in designing and building handmade flat-top steel-string acoustic guitars, Larrivée taught such other world-class luthiers as Grit Laskin, David Wren, and Linda Manzer. Central to Larrivée's impact, argues Morgan, is the tradition of openness he established among his followers.

Gordon E. Smith, who is a faculty member in Queen's University's School of Music, and Kevin Aistrup, a graduate student in Ethnomusicology at Brown University, recount their collaboration with Micmac poet Rita Joe in transcribing two of her songs: "Five Hundred Years" and "Oka Song." Aiming to produce not only "authentic" scholarly transcriptions but also "definitive" leadsheets for wide distribution, they report what they found when they shared their perceptions of this process with each other and with the renowned writer.

Lynn Whidden of Brandon University's Northern Teacher Education Programme (BUNTEP) and Project for the Education of Native Teachers (PENT) reviews an innovative book on first Nations musical instruments recently published by Beverley Diamond, M. Sam Cronk, and Franziska von Rosen.

Chris McDonald, who is studying in York's Graduate Programme in Musicology/Ethnomusicology, provided editorial assistance for this issue.

Once again we are very grateful to the Ontario Arts Council: without their support we could not publish this periodical.