Messer or Maritime Style | Bowing Down Home

One important style frequently encountered on PEI is based on the up-tempo, ensemble oriented, "no-frills" playing of Don Messer, who dominated fiddle-broadcasting on Island radio from 1939-57. In recent years, the Messer based legacy has been expanded through the influence of subsequent Canadian virtuoso fiddlers – such as Ward Allen, Al Cherny, King Ganam, Bill Guest, Ivan Hicks, Ned Landry, Earl Mitton, and Graham Townsend. Messer's musical legacy has for all intents and purposes merged with Maritime fiddling, a contest-based style that has developed in New Brunswick and mainland Nova Scotia.


True to Type: sound is relatively typical of the region

Amateur Player: no distinct regional style

New Wave: developed their playing styles during PEI's fiddling revival

Messer / Maritime Fiddlers by Style

True to Type: Gary Chipman, Peter Doiron, John Gauthier, Billy MacInnis Jr., Billy MacInnis Sr., Bud Stewart

Amateur Players: Mary Smith, Mary Smith & Friends

New Wave: Nathan Condon, Dannielle Ross, The Ross Family Band