Page 88 - Kieran Ballah Remembers M.J
ISSUE : Issue 48
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1988/6/1
Dad was a very small man, little man. He was only about 5 foot 5. Just a short little fellow. But very athletic, well- built, muscular. Uncle Dave was a bigger man, way bigger man--probably be a foot over him, about 50 pounds over him. Big man. Big heavy tenor singer. And he was a sports enthusiast--fished and hunted. My father never fished or hunted much, but liked to weightlift and things like that. And Dad was very artistic with his hands. You know, painting, and decorating--he loved to decorate--interior decorating and store decorations, that kind of stuff. De? signing of ads. Maybe that's where I got some of my flair for the printing, I don't know. But he was very artistic. He wrote this beautiful--calligraphy. He did that kind of work: beautiful lettering. When he signed his name, it was real flowing. Never earned his living at it, but.... (You wonder how he had time for all his in? terests, all those things.) Well, he never had much free time, no. His day started with 5:30 in the morning with the choir at the Sacred Heart Church. It didn't end-- if--sometimes they had two funerals in the morning. He wouldn't get home till 10 o'clock, maybe. And then he'd have pupils all afternoon, teaching singing. We grew up Check out AUstate's discounts on auto insurance Multi Car BLAINE NEWCOMBE /] Retired Adults y Low Mileage If you qualify for any of our discounts we could save you money LLOYD MOORE Qn your auto insurance. Call or drop by for a quote, /jllstate IfouVe in good hands. Allstate Insurance Co. of Canada • Allstate Insurance Company 288 Welton St., Sydney, N.S. B1P5S2 539-1105 with nothing but music all the time in the house. And some awful singers, you know! My mother used to say, "How can you take their money. Mosey! That's a sin for you to take that person's money! They're not going to..." "Look, they're enjoying it," he said. "No, I'll take their money. They're happy." He had some good. Now, Marjorie Coombs Mac- Gibbon--I don't know what Marjorie's mar? ried name is, but she was Marjorie MacGib? bon up till a few years ago. Beautiful singer. She sang with the Atlantic Sympho? ny, and sang with some of the big opera companies out west. She studied under Dad, since she was a young girl. And always at? tributed anything she knew to learning from Mosey Ballah. He was very proud of her. He was propositioned by an operatic singer. He used to visit Detroit a lot--my father's sister was there. And one day when he was there--this lady had heard about him. Oh, what's her name? She's very well known in the opera fields right now. And she went to visit Aunt Sadie. And Aunt Sadie must have been bragging up Dad to her. And wanted to know if she could sing for him. He said, "Sure." So, she sang for him. And then she asked him to help her: "If you don't mind, adjudicate my singing." And he did. And she was so impressed, she went to him every day while he was visiting there, for about 3 or 4 weeks. And then wrote to him and phoned him, would pay him anything to move to De? troit and coach her. And we often said, "Dad, you should have gone. There was your chance. There was your big chance." He wouldn't leave Cape Breton. But he was that good. He knew how to get something out of her voice. Yeah, he knew a voice and he mmt prince Beverage Room Home of Scottish Hospitality Home Cooked Meals Steaks a Specialty REEVES ST. 562-4484 SYDNEY Morrison's Stores "" (7tu&]Home Hardware General Merchants Celebrating over 100 Years of Service ST. PETERS RiCHIWOND COUNTY, NOVA SCOTIA BOE 3B0
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