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The Order of Canada is the country’s way of recognizing substantial achievement and service to the community and the nation. This past August Cape Breton songwriter, Allister MacGillivray was added the Order by Governor General David Johnston.
Allister was appointed for his contributions as a musician and composer whose songs are widely–known for their depictions of Cape Breton and its people.

Max MacDonald, the co-founder of the Celtic Colours Festival said Allister’s Song for the Mira is a campfire staple that has been recorded by over 100 artists. Some of his other great songs are Coal Town Road, Tie Me Down and Sea People. These are songs that help to define who we are as a people and even provide some humour.

I remember meeting a nice American lady at a festival one time who asked me who this Mira person was that so many people were singing about. The Mira is a body of water, and McGillivary’s song has helped make it a key holiday destination on the island.

Allister’s dedication to the collection and publishing of many aspects of Cape Breton traditional culture is also quite remarkable. His books such as The Cape Breton Fiddler, A Cape Breton Ceilidh and Diamonds in the Rough make an enormous contribution to the recorded cultural history of Cape Breton Island.

Permalink - Posted: September 26, 2013 at 11:39 am