Peter Doiron | Bowing Down Home

Pete Doiron & grandson Adam Driscoll at Doiron's home in Summerside: Rounder recording sessions, 1996

Biography

Pete Doiron’s father Adolphe Doiron was the local blacksmith and the premier fiddler in the Rustico region. As a youngster Pete often heard fiddling at house parties, tea parties, parish picnics, school picnics, and weddings. He fondly recalls that at his family’s own house parties, sometimes several step-dancers would get up to dance at once.

Doiron took up the fiddle at age 11 while recuperating from an appendix operation. He played regularly for a couple of years, slacked off, then took some formal lessons after he joined the Canadian Navy; one of his teachers was Matthew LeFort of Montreal, who had played for a while with Don Messer. Doiron started playing for dances while still in the Navy, and also played for a while in country and western bands.

When he retired and moved to Summerside, Doiron became a founding member of the Prince County Fiddlers. After John Gauthier stepped down in 1993, Doiron took over as musical director of that organization and served in that capicity for several years.

Doiron’s approach to jigs and reels tended to be clean, rapid, and devoid of such “Celtic” style flouishes as grace notes and double-string bowing. He delighted in lush settings for waltzes and set-tunes, however, and – as can be heard on his duets with grandson Adam Driscoll (Westphalia Waltz, Maple Sugar and Four-String Polka) – he also enjoyed devising and performing close-harmony parts.

In the early 1990s, Pete released a cassette recording of his playing entitled The Fiddling Chef.

Tune Selections

Doiron, Peter - Carlton County Breakdown Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Florence Killen Waltz Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Four-String Polka Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Graham's Breakdown Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Kiley's Reel Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Maple Sugar Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Ottawa Valley Reel Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - PDoiron Jig 1 Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - PDoiron Reel 1 Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - PDoiron Reel 2 Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - PDoiron Waltz 2 Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Ragtime Annie Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Red River Rag Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Stan's Jig Accompanied by: Ken Perlman, bjo
Messer / Maritime
info
Doiron, Peter - Westphalia Waltz Accompanied by: George Brothers, gtr
Messer / Maritime
info

Tune Selections

Prince County Fiddlers' Society - Shandon Bells / Tuggerman's Jig / Belfast Jig Accompanied by: Ivan Bowness, pno; Austin Paynter, accdn
info
Prince County Fiddlers' Society - Silver Star / Londonderry Hornpipe / London Hornpipe Accompanied by: Ivan Bowness, pno; Austin Paynter, accdn
info

Oral Histories

Dance parties around Rustico General description; Doiron's father had to demonstrate physical prowess at one party info and transcript
Founding of Prince County Fiddlers Founding of Prince County fiddlers info and transcript
Step-dancers shake the house Could see the floors bouncing up and down info and transcript

Video Clips