Arts and Entertainment

Exploring Kitsap’s ties to Cape Breton through celtic music benefit concert/ceili

The late, great Jerry Holland. - Courtesy Photo/
The late, great Jerry Holland.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo/

Jerry Holland memorial concert, ceili and chowder to benefit students of the Scottish tradition, Nov. 1 at the Island Music Center.

Beyond its awkward geometry, Cape Breton — a ragged island off Canada’s eastern seaboard well known for its rich Scottish heritage — shares an interestingly intimate correlation with the Kitsap Peninsula, some 3,500 miles away.

The connection is perhaps nowhere better illustrated than through the venue of the late, legendary Cape Breton tunesmith Jerry Holland, who will be celebrated at the ‘Taste ’O Cape Breton Fiddle Tribute” Nov. 1 at the Island Music Center on Bainbridge.

“For me, he was sort of an idol,” said Poulsbo fiddle teacher and performer Jane Landstra of Dancing Bow Studios and the Country Capers, who studied with the legend in her early 20s.

Landstra and the Country Capers are one of a few groups slated to play in Holland’s memory Nov. 1, followed by an all-comers’ ceili with chowder and soda bread.

“We’ll be bringing a little bit of Cape Breton out here,” Landstra said.

The event serves as both a celebration for the tunesmith’s life and times, as well as an endowment created in his name which aims to provide scholarships for the Celtic Arts Foundation’s traditional Scottish Music Winter School for youth in Seabeck.

One of the most revered and prolific Cape Breton musicians of his generation, Holland also came out to Puget Sound regularly for the Washington state-based foundation’s annual Winter School.

“Aside from his incredible playing ability, he also compiled lots and lots of music,” said Skye Richendrfer, executive director of the foundation. “And he was the most jovial, polite man. He was always willing to spend a little extra time with students ... just a genuine, kind fellow.”

The infectious fiddler seemed to have had that effect on people.

Landstra said his teaching opened the door to an entire world of music that she’d never known. And she’s been there ever since.

“To honor him with an endowment like this,” Landstra said, not to mention the concert. “That is about the nicest thing I could imagine.”

THE CELTIC ARTS FOUNDATION is hosting a tribute to the late Jerry Holland with a concert and ceili at 7 p.m. Nov. 1 at the Island Music Center, 10598 Valley Road on Bainbridge. Tickets are $25/adults, $20/kids 15 and under. Info:,

Elsewhere in benefit shows

With colder months ahead meaning heftier heat and utility payments, some residents can use all the financial help they can get — which could add up to more trips to the food bank.

In a year that food banks around the county are already stressed with a rising number of incoming clients, they too can use all the help they can get.

“The need for food is increasing dramatically,” The Bremerton Foodline reports.

The Windermere Realtors Foundation is stepping up to that end this weekend, hosting a spaghetti feed Nov. 7 at the Manette Saloon, 2113 E. 11th St. in Bremerton, combining dinner with four live bands — ranging from blues to ska — and a silent auction on the evening.

Tickets are $10 for the whole thing, $7 for the spaghetti dinner.

All proceeds will be matched by the Windermere Foundation and donated to the Foodline.

Live music includes local stringer Alan Davis, jam band Heywood Jablowme, Seattle ska band Natalie Wouldn't and the old school blues quartet New Old Stock.


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