Cape Breton Piano: Maybelle Chisolm MacQueen

Maybelle Chisolm McQueen is regarded as the Queen of Cape Breton pianists. She learned it by playing as a child with her uncle, the legendary Angus Chisolm. She felt the piano should provide the life of the music, something for the fiddler to play with, rather than over.

Hilda Chaisson, in an interview with Allister MacGillivray in his book "A Cape Breton Céilidh" said she met Maybelle at a party when Hilda was 10 years old. "I sat on the couch and was so excited that I laughed. I couldn't beleive someone could more their hands so fast! And she used the entire keyboard."

This use of the entire keyboard was a strong influence on pianists who have come since.

To Home of Piano in Traditional Cape Breton Music
To Cape Breton Piano: Some Players Past and Present
Disclaimer: I am not an expert in the history, theory, or playing of Cape Breton Style piano accompiament. I am an eager student. If you find errors, lies, damn lies, ommissions etc etc etc within these pages, please do call it to my attention!

Le gach beannachd,
Roger Lane Reid