Benefit Concert for Colin McKenzie
at the Canadian-American Club

2007 November 18
Canadian-American Club of Massachusetts, 202 Arlington Street, East Watertown, Massachusetts 02472-2004
Benefit concert for Colin McKenzie with Kimberley Fraser, Mac Morin, The Boston Kiltics, Barbara McOwen, Gordie Aucoin, Roger Treat, Lloyd Carr, Peggy Morrison, Gaelic singers, dancers and more.
by donation
Donations will be accepted at the door or can be mailed to the Colin McKenzie Support Trust, Middlesex Bank, PO Box 2185, Natick, MA 01760.


Thanks are due to Marcia Palmater for assistance in identifying those shown in the photos below.

Kimberley Fraser on fiddle and Mac Morin on piano

Harvey Tolman on fiddle and Lloyd Carr on piano

Roger Treat on fiddle and Kimberley Fraser on piano

Kyte MacKillop and Jennifer Schoonover singing in Gaelic
accompanied by Peggy Morrison on piano and Jason Fields on guitar

Gordon Aucoin on fiddle accompanied by Lloyd Carr on piano

Eden Forman and Emerald Rae on unaccompanied fiddles

Timothy MacMaster on highland bagpipes

Jennifer Schoonover performing a highland dance

Barbara McOwen on fiddle and Robert McOwen on guitar

Riley, Peggy Morrison’s grandson, step-dancing

George Keith on fiddle and Janine Randall on piano

Judy McKenzie thanking the attendees

Norman MacEachern prompting a Boston set

Kimberley Fraser on fiddle and Mac Morin on piano
with Norman MacEachern “prompting” a Boston set

Dancing the “basket” figure of a Boston set

Rosemarie Muise Christiansen accompanying on the “bones”

Christine Morrison and Pamela Campbell step-dancing

The Boston Kiltics
(Doug Lamey on fiddle, Cliff McGann on guitar, and Nathan Silva on bodhràn)
accompanied by Janine Randall on piano

The Boston Kiltics
(Doug Lamey on fiddle, Nathan Silva on border pipes, and Cliff McGann on guitar)
accompanied by Janine Randall on piano

Judy McKenzie step-dancing

Mac Morin step-dancing

Pamela Campbell, Meghan MacDonald, Grace Christiansen,
Christine Morrison, and Judy McKenzie step-dancing

Riley and Kimberley Fraser step it off

Review for the Cape Breton Music List
(Posted 2007 November 29)

At the Canadian-American Club, the third Sunday of each month is normally devoted to the Gaelic Club meeting, but this month that meeting gave way to a benefit concert to raise money to help Colin McKenzie, the son of Dan and Judy McKenzie, who was seriously injured in a near-fatal car accident and needs financial assistance as he recovers from multiple surgeries.[1] Judy, a fine step dancer and step-dance teacher, has been a stalwart contributor to the Cape Breton community in the Boston area and it was nice to see a large crowd show up and offer its moral and financial support.

The afternoon’s music began with two fine sets of tunes, including O’er the Muir amang the Heather and Laddie with the Plaidie,[2] by Kimberley Fraser on fiddle and Mac Morin on piano. Kimberley is working on a second degree at the Berklee College of Music in Boston and so was already in the area; Mac stopped by on his way back to Nova Scotia from visiting his brother in the Yukon Territory. It was nice to have a chance to chat with both of these superb musicians again.

Harvey Tolman on fiddle and Lloyd Carr on piano, both from New Hampshire, played three sets of tunes. Roger Treat, from Vermont, on fiddle and Kimberley Fraser on piano continued with more sets of tunes. Jennifer Schoonover and Kyte MacKillop, accompanied by Peggy Morrison on piano and Jason Fields on guitar, gave us a couple of Gaelic songs and invited the audience to sing along with them, which many did; they followed the songs with a puirt a beul set. Gordon Aucoin on fiddle, accompanied by Lloyd Carr on piano, followed with more sets of tunes. The sisters Eden Forman and Emerald Rae, both past National Scottish Fiddling champions, gave us an unaccompanied dual fiddle set featuring some more tunes in what I took to be an Appalachian-inspired style; they wrote one of the pieces they played, Smokin’ Joe, for their grandfather. Timothy MacMaster played some tunes, including The Dark Island, on highland bagpipes; Jennifer Schoonover performed a highland dance to his music. Barbara McOwen, co-founder of the Boston Harbor Scottish Fiddle Club and the New Hampshire Strathspey & Reel Society, on fiddle, accompanied on guitar by her husband, Robert, a professor of mathematics at Northeastern University and a well-known Highland dancer, gave us yet more tunes, this time in the Scottish style. George Keith, a computer programmer and a noted fiddler (he regularly tours with the Irish-born singer/songwriter Robbie O’Connell and frequently plays with Matt and Shannon Heaton), on fiddle, accompanied by Janine Randall first on keyboards and then on piano, gave us several sets of traditional Irish tunes played in the Irish style.

The music was then temporarily interrupted. Judy McKenzie offered her thanks to the attendees for their support and brought us up to date on Colin’s progress; she expects him to make a full recovery, but it will be slow going. The raffle for donated gifts, for which tickets were sold during the afternoon, was then held. Tasty refreshments supplied by the many fine cooks in the community were also served.

The music resumed with Kimberley and Mac playing for a Boston set, prompted by Norman MacEachern. Two groups of four couples took the floor and obviously enjoyed themselves. The Boston Kiltics (Doug Lamey on fiddle, Nathan Silva on bodhràn and border pipes, and Cliff McGann on guitar), accompanied by Janine Randall on piano and Rosemarie Muise Christiansen on “bones”, concluded the afternoon’s music, playing several sets, to which several dancers stepped, including Judy McKenzie, Mac Morin, and Kimberley Fraser.

The atmosphere at the Canadian-American Club is family-friendly and there were numerous children in attendance (one clad in a jumper made of the Cape Breton tartan); several profited from the music and the fine step-dancers present to try a step or two of their own. The large crowd had an equally great time with all the fine music and dance. To top it all off, the afternoon served its other purpose—over three thousand dollars were raised for Colin’s trust fund.

[1] If you were unable to attend, you can still contribute by making a check payable to
      Colin McKenzie Support Trust
and mailing it to
      Middlesex Bank
      PO Box 2185
      Natick, MA 01760

[2] Thanks to Marcia Palmater for these tune identifications.