MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada

Angus MacIssac

Angus was born in 1875 in Giant's Lake, Antigonish County, Cape Breton. He was the son of Donald MacIsaac of Moidart, Scotland, and Catherine Gillis MacIsaac of Beach Hill, Antigonish County. He was recorded by John Lorne Campbell in 1953 after Rev. P.J. Nicholson of Saint Francis Xavier University recommended him as good singer. Campbell took great interest in him, partly because of his performance of humorous songs, but mainly because of his knowledge of the Fenian lay, "Teanntachd Mor na Feinne", which had reportedly not been sung in Scotland for several generations. His songs and lore are regarded as being part of the Moidart tradition in Nova Scotia.

Leach collected five songs from Angus: "Mo Mhàili Bheag Òg (My Young Little Molly)," "Chaidh Tu Phèigi air Chall (You Got Lost Peggy)," "A Choille Ghruamaich (The Gloomy Forest)," "Muile nam Mòr Bheann (Mull of the High Mountains)," "MacDonald's Return to Scotland (The Pride of Glencoe)," and "Tha M'Inntinn Trom, Cha Thog Mi Fonn (I am Dejected, I Have No Desire to Sing)."