Unsung hero, Arthur McGregor, Canadian Folk Music Awards
Unsung hero, Arthur McGregor, Canadian Folk Music Awards

Arthur McGregor Honoured By CFMAs As An Unsung Hero

The Ottawa Folklore Music Store met its end after almost 40 years as a hub for students, musicians, folklorists and the curious in July when dwindling sales and an unflagging overhead pushed it into bankruptcy.

Founder Arthur McGregor, now touring as a sideman with Celtic Rathskallions, his wife Wendy Moore’s kids’ show, admits to mixed feelings over the Folklore Centre’s bankruptcy — relief to have ridded himself of 24-7 financial stress and guilt and distress that teachers, students, suppliers and others all lost money when the bank’s whip finally came down.

“There is this huge emptiness in a chunk of my life,” he says.

If he had scripted the end, he would have closed the doors of his debt-free Ottawa Folklore Centre or sold it as a going concern.

“The Folklore Centre’s time as a business concept has passed,” he says. “The idea of passing things on by word of mouth is dying. You can buy a Mac computer and get 15 guitar lessons for free or you can lie in bed and order a guitar and have it delivered in two days."

McGregor's longstanding service to the community was recognized on Sunday in Edmonton when he was honoured with the “Unsung Hero” award at the Canadian Folk Music Awards.

- Source: CFMA, Chris Cobb-Ottawa Citizen

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