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A journey through the lyrics of Cape Breton

By Frank MacDonald - Inverness Oran

A journey through the lyrics of Cape Breton: Max MacDonald releases Songs of Home

This month marks the release of a song collection containing a dozen favourite Cape Breton songs chosen and sung by Max MacDonald. Songs of Home: A Personal Tribute to Cape Breton Songwriters, celebrates a handful of the countless storytellers who have been penned over the decades by a very diverse and gifted number of songwriters. What makes these particular choices historically significant is that they have been gathered together under a single and original voice.

Not only is the selection an important sampler of what Cape Breton musicians do when they don’t play the fiddle, it also brings back, for the length of this album at least, one of the most influential voices in Cape Breton over the past four decades. Whether with The Rise and Follies or fronting the popular band, Buddy and the Boys, Max MacDonald’s voice has been an integral part of the Cape Breton soundtrack.

Mac-Using Troubadour ...

Mac-Using Troubadour Launches Comeback CD, Music Industry Software

By Charles Moore - LowEndMac

An old friend of mine, Nova Scotian musician Max MacDonald, recently released his first solo CD in his varied career as a singer, actor, songwriter, and entertainment manager.

Max was front man for the Cape Breton, NS based rock band Buddy and the Boys back in the '70s and early '80s, a mainstay in the touring music and comedy repertories "The Rise and Follies of Cape Breton" and "The Cape Breton Summertime Revue" from 1977 until 1995, and, as a principal in the entertainment promotion firm Rave Entertainment, founder and organizer of the fall Celtic Colours music festival from 1997 to 2008, which grew to an event featuring more than 400 performers.

Taking it to the Max at the ECMAs

Click to enlarge image ...By Laura Jean Grant - The Cape Breton Post

Max MacDonald wearing several hats in Corner Brook, N.L

Max MacDonald certainly won't be cold with all the hats he'll be wearing at the East Coast Music Association's awards, festival and conference weekend later this month in Corner Brook, N.L.

A well-known figure in the island's entertainment scene, MacDonald recently began a new job at Sydney-based Marcato Digital, developing web-based software for the music industry, and last fall put out a solo CD, Songs of Home, which has earned him his first two ECMA music award nominations.

"I'm going there wearing a whole bunch of hats. I mean I'm going there certainly to support the Team Cape Breton ECMA group to promote the ECMA here next year. I'm also going wearing my Marcato Digital hat to talk to a lot of the international delegates about what we're doing, and I'll have a little beanie, a little artist cap too," said MacDonald. "It's going to be fun. It's going to be really exciting."

Songs of Home Release Party To Be Broadcast on CBC

Songs of Home was officially released at an event at the Royal Cape Breton Yacht Club in late November. I was so pleased that the room was full, including a number of the writers who contributed to the CD. It was a terrific night!

Wendy Bergfeldt, from CBC, was also there recording some of the activity. CBC’s Island Echoes will be broadcasting some of the event action this Saturday, Jan. 10 @ 8:05 pm (AST). The show will also be available online by going to



Songs of Home Receives Two ECMA Nominations

Holy hot smoking trash cans!... as my buddy Ralph would say. I was surprised, amused, honoured, amazed and more to learn that Songs of Home was nominated for two East Coast Music Awards today. The two categories I was nominated for are Folk Recording of the Year & Male Solo Recording of the Year. I mean really... How cool is that!

Then again, I had so much support from so many talented people in putting this project together. The writers on the project alone have received an amazing 60 ECMA’s, 4 Junos and 1 Grammy over the years.

Many thanks to all of you who have and continue to support the project.

For more ECMA information:

To The Max

By Laura Jean Grant - The Cape Breton Post

Max MacDonald pays tribute to Cape Breton songwriters - and they return the favour - on new album, Songs of Home

Click to enlarge image ...SYDNEY - A quick look down the list of support vocalists on Max MacDonald's new album is a testament to the high esteem in which he is held in Cape Breton's musical community.

The CD, Songs of Home, features MacDonald singing the songs of J.P. Cormier, Leon Dubinsky, Bruce Guthro, Buddy MacDonald, Steve MacDougall, Ronnie MacEachern, Rita MacNeil, Matt Minglewood, Sam Moon, Jimmy Rankin, Gordie Sampson and Duncan Wells - who also all agreed to sing backup vocals on their respective tracks. Quite a list.

"We're so fortunate. We've got one Grammy-winning songwriter in Cape Breton but we could have 10. They're all just so good at the craft of songwriting so I had a tremendous catalogue to choose from and these are fabulous songs," said MacDonald. "And how fortunate I was. Everybody I called said ‘Yeah, I'd like to do that. That's a great idea.'"

Pick of the Week- Halifax Herald

Max MacDonald Songs of Home (Independent)

Sometimes the best ideas are the simple ones, so combining the rich, sonorous voice of Max MacDonald and the work of a dozen of his favourite Cape Breton composers on Songs of Home is a brilliant no-brainer.

Known for his work with Buddy and the Boys and The Cape Breton Summertime Revue, MacDonald has been busiest behind the scenes in recent years with Rave Entertainment and the Celtic Colours International Festival, but here he makes a welcome return to the microphone.

Max MacDonald’s first solo CD would be a great addition to any collection

By Dan MacDonald - The Cape Breton Post

Click to enlarge image ...The CD looks like an old 45, big hole in the centre, yellow label, grooves and all. The content is mostly memories and stories, crafted with care by a dozen of Cape Breton’s best writers. The singer is a veteran performer whose distinctive voice will bring back as many memories as the songs themselves.

Titled “Songs of Home: A Personal Tribute to Cape Breton Songwriters,” it’s the first solo project from Max MacDonald, famous for a long career as a member of Buddy & The Boys, the Rise & Follies of Cape Breton Island and the Cape Breton Summertime Revue. Max has been away from centre stage since 1994 and since that time he has occupied his time as one of the principles with Rave Entertainment and one of the founders of the highly successful Celtic Colours International Music Festival.

CD Coming Soon ...

By Dan MacDonald - The Cape Breton Post

While at the Celtic Colours office I had the chance to ask Max MacDonald (the festival’s marketing director) about the release of his forthcoming recording.

Yes, after all these years, Max has done his own CD. He picked songs from 12 Cape Breton composers and brought the writers in to sing backup on all the cuts. A very novel concept that produced some interesting results.

I just got to hear snippets of some cuts and I can’t wait to hear the final product. Max hopes to have everything ready for an official release in the next few weeks. This is something to look forward to.

Excerpted from & copyright © 2008 The Cape Breton Post All Rights Reserved