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Living by the Music: Cohesive Influences in the Song Repertoire of French-American New Englanders

It has always been a traditional attitude among French-Canadian folk singers that "le bonheur vient en chantant" (happiness comes with singing). The fraternal cultural organization La Societe Richelieu expresses this social philosophy in a similar way: "chanter, c'est fraterniser" (to sing is to be together in brotherhood).

French-Canadian folk song represents an oral heritage which originally played a crucial role in the everyday life of the rural Quebecois. Social life in Quebec before World War II centered around the activities of the parish, family and neighbors. Communally shared musical gatherings, known as veiltees, were nearly ...

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