Anita Best sings English folk song Mattie Groves in the Bonne Bay Cottage Hospital

During a warm August night, a group of singers and storytellers gathered at the Julia Ann Walsh Centre in Norris Point (often known as what it used to be, the Bonne Bay Cottage Hospital). Newfoundland and Labrador folk music legend Anita Best was among them, spinning yarns and singing songs.

One of the songs she sang was this English folk song called Mattie Groves. In Anita’s words:

Here’s the story of a woman who, you know… when your husband is away sometimes, maybe you might get “interested” in a young fella? She got interested in a young fella, but she didn’t get away with it.

Thanks to Gary Wilton and Voice of Bonne Bay (the community radio station in and around Bonne Bay) for recording and sharing the audio from the event!

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Tom Cochrane

Tom Cochrane is a digital storyteller and the creative director of Old Crow Magazine. Tom's photography and videography work can be found at tomcochranephoto.com. Tom is based in Newfoundland, Canada.