Here Comes John Allan Cameron

Remixed and Remastered

This classic debut recording by John Allan Cameron was released in 1968 but has never before been on CD. The original multi-track studio sessions have been remixed and remastered to maintain the feel of the original recording while bringing you closer to the music.
The album is accompanied by a 28 page booklet with the original sleeve notes, additional photos and newly-written essays.
Get the album on CD by mail from Indie Pool or Amazon.Com or as a digital download from iTunes using the links above. The iTunes download includes a pdf version of the booklet.

Old Woman From Mabou
Banks Of Sicily
Air Fal Al Al O
Medley of Pipe Tunes
Medley of Fiddle Tunes
The Four Marys
Medley of Pipe Tunes
Puirt a beul Medley
Medley - Air, Strathspey and Reel
Peggy Gordon
I Am A Little Beggarman

Research and Liner Notes by Paul MacDonald
Tape Transfers by Richard L. Hess
Audio Restoration by Paul MacDonald
Editing by Stuart Cameron with Allie Bennett and Paul MacDonald
Mixed and Mastered at Soundpark Studios by Jamie Foulds
Project Director - Stephen MacDonald
Executive Producer - Stuart Cameron

Originally recorded at RCA Recording Studios, Montreal, 1968
Produced by Marvin Burke
Vocals, guitars and step dancing - John Allan Cameron
Piano and celeste - Jessie Cameron
Fiddle - John Donald Cameron
Bass - Freddie McKenna
Gaelic vocals on Air Fal Al Al O - Donald Gordon

Here Comes John Allan Cameron was recorded in the fall of 1968 at RCA Studios in Montreal, the first multi-track recording by a Cape Bretoner. State-of-the-art equipment had just been installed and the facility was referred to as the “Nashville of the North”. It was to these studios that John Lennon would turn several months later for the equipment to record “Give Peace A Chance” and it is likely the same machines were used for both projects.

Less than a year after this seminal release, John Allan appeared alongside Van Morrison, Joni Mitchell, James Taylor and Kris Kristofferson at the Newport Folk Festival's “young performers” concert and, a week later, at Mariposa with Pete Seeger and Joan Baez. Soon after he was touring internationally with Anne Murray and Makem & Clancy and was a regular guest on CBC TV's Don Messer Show and Singalong Jubilee and eventually had his own nationally syndicated program.

When Stuart Cameron, John Allan's son, approached Stephen MacDonald Productions about co-ordinating this re-release, the original stereo master could not be found. Music historian Paul MacDonald was asked to write new and extensive liner notes and also took upon himself the challenge of locating the missing master. Although this tape never surfaced, he discovered something much more exciting: the original unmixed multi-track recordings which had been stored and forgotten in John Allan's brother's basement.

This one inch tape was carefully packed and sent to an expert in Toronto, Richard Hess, who transferred the fragile acetate to a digital medium. Paul MacDonald then spent weeks on the restoration of the original tracks which were edited by Stuart with invaluable assistance from Allie Bennett who played with John Allan for years. The remix and remastering were carried out by the award-winning producer and sound engineer Jamie Foulds at Soundpark Studios in Sydney.

It would be hard to over-estimate the impact that the release of Here Comes John Allan Cameron had on the music scene on the East Coast, especially in Cape Breton. Recorded more than 20 years before The Rankin Family, The Barra MacNeils, Natalie MacMaster and Ashley MacIsaac, here was an album with Gaelic songs as well as bagpipe and fiddle tunes played on guitar. Most importantly, it featured a disciplined and dedicated musician and performer who was not afraid to do it his own way. He showed others that it was possible to enter the mainstream without compromising your cultural roots.

Here Comes John Allan Cameron
“I’ll just be me. People will dig it, or not dig, myself or my music. But I sincerely hope they will.”
Links
The Inverness Oran
The Cape Breton Post 11/28/2012
The Canadian Encyclopedia
Wikipedia
Memorial Site
Electric Scotland
CBC Archives
FolkWorld - Home of European Music