A Cape Breton teenager said she was almost moved to tears when she learned her Mi’kmaq rendition of The Beatles’ classic song “Blackbird” had earned her a shoutout from none other than Paul McCartney. Emma Stevens is pictured in an undated publicity handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Carter Chiasson, *MANDATORY CREDIT*

Canadian teen who sang Mi’kmaq version of ‘Blackbird’ meets Paul McCartney

McCartney first recorded “Blackbird” for The Beatles’ 1968 White Album

Paul McCartney says he was a little anxious about singing “Blackbird” at a weekend concert after meeting a Cape Breton teenager behind a much-discussed Mi’kmaq rendition of the Beatles classic.

The British rock legend told a large audience at Vancouver’s BC Place that Emma Stevens’ version in the Aboriginal language “is so beautiful” it made him nervous about performing his version.

He told the crowd that he’d met Stevens before the show on Saturday evening.

Stevens posted a cover of the song on YouTube after she and her music teacher, Carter Chiasson, recorded it at Allison Bernard High School in Eskasoni, N.S.

Stevens and her classmates recorded the song to highlight the United Nations’ International Year of Indigenous Languages, which seeks to raise awareness of threats to Indigenous languages across the world.

Chiasson produced the video, and the lyrics were translated into Mi’kmaq by another community member, Katani Julian.

McCartney first recorded “Blackbird” for The Beatles’ 1968 White Album.

The 76-year-old is currently on tour, and played in Vancouver on Saturday evening.

Stevens’ version has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times since it was uploaded to YouTube on April 25.

Her performance earned her worldwide attention, including a trip to a UN-Habitat Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya, where she performed and delivered a short speech that highlighted the plight of missing and murdered Indigenous girls and women in Canada.

READ MORE: ‘I wanted to cry:’ Canadian teen thrilled with McCartney shoutout

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tap Truck Okanagan launches as first location in Canada

The business is built on a restored 1957 Chevy panel van and ready to serve craft beer on tap, wine or cider

Crews building structure at former Summerland train station site

West Summerland Station will pay tribute to railway history, serve as trail marker

$30,000 over 30 weeks for local causes

Send us your good stories and you could win money for your favourite cause

Additional Penticton washrooms open in time for weekend

Washrooms at Riverside, Skaha Lake Park, Okanagan Lake Park, more, now open

First day back; attending elementary school amid COVID-19

“… Social connections are certainly important for kids,” said Carmi principal Dave Ritchie.

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

Vernon protesters take Black Lives Matter movement to park

A handful of demonstrators raised fists, signs in solidarity Friday

Police watchdog investigating Lake Country incident

A man was taken to hospital after the June 3 incident

Community backlash over Black Lives Matter rally in Kelowna

Some members of Kelowna’s black community stated they don’t support Friday’s rally

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park at large

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Bear strolls into Okangan homeowner’s living room

Conservation officers are searching for the bear, which entered a home in the Foothills area

Most Read