Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 71 > Page 53 - Joe Neil MacNeil: A Talk About Tales

Page 53 - Joe Neil MacNeil: A Talk About Tales

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1996/12/1 (244 reads)

in a short time you'll forget a lot of those stories, because you were out of practice of telling them. (John Maclsaac himself....) He was a won? derful storyteller. He could perform-- you'd imagine that he was two different characters. He could speak, or act, like the two different (people). Oh yes, yes, yes. If he was telling a comical story, he could tell the different parts, what one would say and what the other would say--and oh, he could work it out. He did a real, real good job of telling a story. Not only to listen to him, but to sit down and watch him--that's where the good part of the sto? ry was. If you saw the like of that man on television telling a story, he'd be some? thing to watch, and something to listen to, because, like I said, he'd act, he'd go through most of those performances. And he'd change his voice, he'd change his ex? pression, you know. He could get cross, like if somebody got cross and he was peeved in some way, he could talk, just an? swer like that man. Or he could go almost like begging, like the other man would be. Oh, he was real, real good at it. He was the best that I ever heard on tell? ing old stories. And he had so many of them. That was his heart's delight. When he'd sit down for awhile talking to all the people at a wake, and when things set? tled down, then he'd start away with tell? ing a short story, and from there on. Usual? ly start with a story about the--I think he said there were two Irishmen that bought the cow. They've settled who will be the owner of the cow--they'd be both owners. Well, one fellow would own the half the head was on, and the other fellow would own the (other) half, the hindquarters. And of course it was the fellow that owned the head • OPEN EVERY PAY: 9:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Country • Bluegrass • Rock • Folk Fiddle and Newfoundland Music Largest Atlantic Region Music selection in Eastern Canada. Tap your toe to Cape Breton & Newfoundland Fiddle, Accordion & Folk Music, & "Down East" Presentations. Write or ask for our list of Newfoundland & Maritime Music. ~ Available by Mail Order ~ 2 miles south of CHETICAMP, on the Cabot Trail P.O.Box 516, Cheticamp, NS BOE 1H0 • Ph: (902)224-3782 that would have to feed the cow.... And I suppose the milk was shared. It was all right. But then when the cow fresh? ened, when it was the time of the cow to freshen, well the calf be? longed to the other fellow because the calf came at that end, it was in that half of the cow. So when the other fellow saw that, he was feeding the Storyteller Joe Nell MacNeil and foiklorist Dr. cow--he said Jolm Shaw, about the time they published their that he was book, the Cape Breton classic. Tales until Dawn. through. So he said that he was going to kill his half of the cow. So he killed (it) --struck the cow on the head, and went through the usual procedure in butchering. So, then neither of them had a cow. Well, -he'd start away with that story at first. But that was only just starting at the beginning of his repertoire of sto? ries. From there on it went along, and the stories were getting longer and better as he was going along. Oh, he was a wonder? ful, wonderful storyteller.... CONNOnS MUOSHOTS & More SYDNEY SHOPPING CENTRE, PRINCE ST. TEL/FAX 539-8235 WE CAN PUT YOUR PHOTO ON ALMOST ANY OF OUR PRODUCTS OR TAKE A LIVE PICTURE * PHOTO MUGS * PHOTO GLAZING * PHOTO CAPS * PHOTO BUTTONS * PHOTO CHARTS * PHOTO KEYCHAINS * PHOTO FRIDGE MAGNETS * PHOTO T-SHIRTS * PHOTO POLO SHIRTS * COLOR COPYING * LAMINATING * LICENSE PLATES * PHOTO SWEATSHIRTS ' AND MUCH MORE... HOME OF HAIRSTYLES ON PRINT OR VIDEO lighthouse Collection I V of newly composed Fiddle Tunes Original Melodies In the cape Breton, Irish, and Scottish Tradition Compiled by Paul Cranford New Music! in the Cape Breton Musical Heritage Series FROM THE ITINERANT LIFESTYLE fashioned by his work as a lighthouse keeper and by his passion for Cape Breton violin music and its tradition bearers, Paul Cranford's new book offers transcriptions of 294 melodies by Paul, and friends like Johnny Wilmot, Otis Tomas, Paul MacDonald, and Tommy Basker. 100-page 9x12 Book includes the choice of CD < Cassette Tape of 57 tunes, played by Paul & friends BOOK-&-CD (or TAPE) $27.95 • TAPE alone $11.95 AVAILABLE IN BOOKSTORES and MUSIC STORES • or use Order Form on page 71 • 53
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