French-Canadian music

French-Canadian Music

French-Canadian music

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French settlers brought music with them when inhabiting what is now Quebec and other areas throughout Canada. Since the arrival of French music in Canada, there has been much intermixing with the Celtic music of Anglo-Canada.

French-Canadian folk music is generally performed to accompany dances such as the jig, jeux dansé, ronde, cotillion, and quadrille. The fiddle is perhaps the most common instrument utilized and is used by virtuosos such as Jean Carignan, Jos Bouchard, and Joseph Allard. Also common is the German diatonic accordion, played by the likes of Philippe Bruneau and Alfred Montmarquette, spoons, bone, and jaw harps.

French immigrants to Quebec established their musical forms in the future province, but there was no scholarly study until Ernest Gagnon's 1865 collection of 100 folk songs. In 1967, Radio-Canada released The Centennial Collection of Canadian Folk Songs (much of which was focused on French-Canadian music), which helped launch a revival of Quebec folk. Singers like Yves Albert, Edith Butler, and, especially, Félix Leclerc and Gilles Vigneault, helped lead the way. The 1970s saw purists like Le Rêve du Diable and La Bottine Souriante continued the...
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