By Richard Bell
The Seaforth community turned out at the Seaforth Community Hall on January 7 to celebrate the life and work of Gordon Stobbe, a new recipient of the Order of Canada in recognition of his decades of work as a fiddler and musician.
Born in Saskatchewan, Stobbe moved east to Atlantic Canada in 1977, where he carved out his distinguished musical career, including the TV program Up Home Tonight, and 12 years of the weekly Bluegrass show “Bluegrass Express” on CHFX. He has authored 23 books of fiddle tunes and fiddling technique, and performed and taught at music festivals across the country.
As a performer, he appeared with such bands as the Dixie Flyers, the Ladies Choice Bluegrass Band, Those Fabulous Clichés, the Mighty Oak String Band, and the Gordon Stobbe Trio. He has taught for many years at Musicstop's Canadian Conservatory of Music.
Thanking the Seaforth crowd for coming out, Stobbe talked modestly about what making music had meant to him. “In my line of work, there’s no goal, there’s just music, to keep doing what we do,” Stobbe said. “We get up in the morning, and we do it. It’s tons of fun, people pay us to do it, and it’s better than almost all the other alternatives. It’s a joy for me, although I have to leave my home and my family, it’s a joy for me to go out and do what I do, and that a reward in itself.”
Note: For more information about the Order of Canada or to nominate someone, visit www.gg.ca/honours.