Jerry Holland, Cape Breton fiddler, dies

For those of us in the music community who knew Jerry Holland, we know that we have lost an amazing musician and a kind soul. News of his death was just posted on CBC . When they learned of Jerry’s struggle against kidney cancer, traditional musicians from all over the eastern seaboard came out in support of him, giving numerous benefit concerts.

Originally from Brockton, Massachusetts, Jerry Holland grew up spending summers in Cape Breton with his family. In 1975, he moved to the island permanently. He was known for his compositions of fiddle tunes as much as his spirited playing. And he knew how to have a good time. The last time I saw Jerry was at a particularly memorable session at a Lowell Folk Festival after party — it was a surprising mix of Jerry’s Cape Breton fiddling, members of Solas, and a kora player from Washington, D.C. It’s a nice way to remember him.

3 thoughts on “Jerry Holland, Cape Breton fiddler, dies”

  1. We had the great honor of hearing Jerry play over the years in our summer home town of Inverness on Cape Breton Island. We heard him play just six days ago. His courage and passion for the music even in his declining state was incredibly moving. Our hearts go out to his family and huge circle of friends and followers. We heard the sad news at a square dance in Glencoe Mills last night. Jerry would love to know that the tears and music and dancing flowed and flowed and flowed throughout the evening.He will be missed terribly.

  2. I feel that I have lost a soulmate although I never spoke with him. His lovely music will remain forever.

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