Sunday, November 28, 2010

Where to buy CD's??

You can find CD's through Ebay or other online options but for a concentrated store where there focus is on Cajun / Zydeco I normally direct people to  It's been around for ever and is located in Ville Platte, Louisiana...     The other option could be which is in New Orleans.

The other reason why I like Floyds Record Shop as well as other sites is that you can play samples of the tunes before buying the CD.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Zydeco Tours - Magical Mystery of Zydeco tours

I wanted to put the word out to a great opportunity to do Zydeco tours.  Kay with the Magical Mystery of Zydeco will get you into those unique experiences with a group of fellow fans. Check out her web site and upcoming trips planned.  Her prices were also quite amazing considering what your getting. 

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Zydeco CD Review - T-Lou "Doin' The Crabwalk"

Just got my hands on T-Lou's latest Zydeco CD called "Doin The Crabwalk". T-Lou is an inspiration since he is in his early 70's and still creating great new Zydeco tunes to keep the dancers addicted. His voice sounds like someone half his age and he really mixed up the album with a good variety of tunes and tempos. Of course my favorite tune is "Hitchhiking On The 405" as it's a story about a gal hitchhiking from Chicago to San Diego to hear some Zydeco...

In each community we are fortunate to have the local Cajun/Zydeco bands to give that live experience. My only request for all the artists is to try not make the tunes to long as at any given dance we can never dance with all the dancers and the longer the songs, the less dancers we get to dance with...
Loved the cover of the CD as well giving it a little happy California Zydeco feeling with the image of him with a beach in the background.
To listen and buy the CD just go to the following CD baby link..

Friday, August 13, 2010

Zydeco in Europe Lil' Jims Big Squeeze

I had heard there were Zydeco bands in Europe that sounded like they were from Louisiana or Texas (that good)... and while these guys from the UK play a little "fast" on one of the tunes I heard and a little rough around the edges... they certainly capture the essence of the energy which is amazing and not easy to do as there are many local bands here in the USA which can't do this...

Lil' Jims Big Squeeze. What is also funny is I can't find a place to buy their CD online.. guess they really do it for the love of it as you can't support the bands if they don't make it easy :)

Friday, July 30, 2010

Upcoming Zydeco Trips

Thanks to Dick Brainard's endless energy for coordinating Zydeco trips here are a few coming up that will be some jolly good times! I did New Years last year and had a blast... Basically when your not sleeping or eating you bounce between the different music events going on all day every day. If you have never done a Cajun/Zydeco festival in Louisiana I would pick Festival Acadiens first.

Festivals Acadiens

Web Site:
We now have a block of 15 rooms at the Holiday Inn on Evangeline Thruway in Lafayette for Festivals Acadiens for $79/night for the nights of Oct. 8-9-10. This is the least costly rate in town for this event for a 4-star hotel. Call the Holiday Inn at 337-233-6815 & ask for the Festivals Acadiens Zydeco Group Rate. Once they are gone, they are gone--I could only get 15 rooms.
The plan is to fly into New Orleans on Thursday for the Rock 'n' Bowl, then up to Lafayette for dance venues Friday night, Cafe des Amis Sat morning, the fest Saturday afternoon, dance venues that night, the fest Sunday, then Vermilionville zydeco dance, Whiskey River zydeco & Pat's Atchafalaya Club Cajun/zydeco dance. I got a room at the 4-star Sheraton in Metaire halfway between downtown & the airport (near the Rock 'n' Bowl) for $55 + tax for Thursday the 7th. on Type in MSY & click on the 4-star rate.

New Year's Zydeco Trip
We will be staying at the 4-star Holiday Inn on Evangeline Thruway just south of I-10 for New Year's weekend. The rate will be $59/night/room with continental breakfast. The Holiday Inn has an indoor heated pool, hot tub & sauna, laundry room, bar & restaurant, & free USA Today at your door. Rooms are laid out around a large central courtyard, so you can park in front of your room. A classy place! To reserve, call 337-233-6815 & ask for the New Year's Zydeco Group Rate. You can cancel up to a few weeks before--but call early to be sure to reserve at the group rate.
Many will fly into New Orleans Thusday, Dec. 30 for the Rock 'n' Bowl dance, then up to Lafayette for the New Year's Eve dance with Geno Delafose at Vermilionville. Other dance venues will be published as time draws closer. We plan to work with Troy Carrier & Wayne to have bands at the Offshore Lounge in Lawtell, and with Susan at Angelle's Whiskey River Landing for Geno on Sunday. And Deb Waldman will likely have her large annual gathering on New Year's Day. Some will have to will fly home Sunday, others on Monday, Jan. 3.
For a hotel in New Orleans, I use Type in either MSY (New Orleans Airport), or New Orleans Downtown, depending on where you wish to stay. I am staying at the 4-star Sheraton in Metaire halfway between downtown and the airport for $54 + tax & fee (two beds). Parking is free. The Rock 'n' Bowl is only 3-4 miles. For dinner before the dance, try Ye Olde College Inn which John (owner of the R n B) also owns--adjacent to the R n B.

Mardi Gras 2011

The Holiday Inn on Evangeline Thruway has given us a block of 15 rooms for March 4-5-6-7 (or longer) at $69/night. The plan for Mardi Gras is to fly into New Orleans, Thursday, Mar. 3 for the Rock 'n' Bowl dance, then up to Lafayette for the weekend and Mardi Gras Day (Tuesday, Mar. 8) in Iota, Mamou & Eunice. Again check for a good hotel in New Orleans, Thursday night, Mar. 3.

If your interested in more details just email Dick at (hisfirstnamelastname)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Brian Jack Latest CD - You Don't Know Jack

Thank to the endless hours of recording time Brian Jack has recently released a new CD called "You Don't Know Jack". The album has many of the tunes with tempos that dancers have come to get addicted to. My favorite tracks #7 Baby Don't Go, a snappy little upbeat tune that drives your feet to the slow quick quick zydeco montra in a wonderful way.

The CD starts with a short audio comment saying "If they going to hate on you, let them hate on you, cause really they ain't worth your time". Interesting beginning comment and while I am don't know for sure, I am guessing it has something to do with the dog eat dog environment of being a top Zydeco artist in Louisiana and Texas these days. It takes a lot of courage to keep pushing it and bringing forward the great energy in Zydeco that we all have come to love.

You can listen to samples of all the tracks at the following link and if you like the tunes, support the artist and buy the CD :)

If you don't have any of Brian's CD's I would get the Best of Brian Jack at the link below...

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Portland Festival - Zydeco and Blues

First visit to the Portland Blues (and Zydeco) festival in downtown Portland. What a great event and place to play for a fourth of July weekend retreat!

This video clip has Curley Taylor pumping out the Zydeco tunes while Lilli Ann and her daughter dance on stage. It was very cool that Curley had many dancers up there while he was playing during his set.

There were pleanty of dancers from most of the west coast as well as some good Cajun/Zydeco bands to dance to.

Here is a little video clip of a little zydeco dance demonstration we did at the festival:

If you can go in a day or two before the festival starts I would recommend it as there is plenty of stuff to keep you busy around downtown.

Portland has a great cheap transportation system to get you to and from the airport at just about any time. It cost $3.00 each way for the 40 minute direct ride that drops you right downtown. Free trams in the downtown area can take you all over downtown for free.

Here are a few of the things I checked out and would recommend if you get a chance to do the festival.

Portland Walking Tours - There are many tours to choose from and the one I did was very good.

Washington Park - Great walking park with a huge garden and tons of areas to explore. Take the tram to the park and back for very cheap.
Portland Saturday and Sunday Market - Great market with tons of stalls and food vendors to keep you busy for several hours.

Powell's City of Books store - Largest book store that I have ever been in ... amazing...

Portland Food Carts - There are over 500 around the entire city and downtown has a ton as well. Don't discount food carts as bad fast food... several great restaraunts started as food carts in Portland.

Bar and Food - The Veritable Quandary was a great little bar and restaraunt right next to the festival to catch a beer or bite for a little break from the festival or after as a few of us enjoyed the place.

Marriot Downtown Waterfront which is where many people stayed... or you can go the el-cheapo way that I did at the Downtown Value Inn.

Downtown Value Inn - AAE
The hotel I stayed at was $55/night which is half the price of any standard hotel. The reviews were very mixed so I was a little worried. For those who need a pampered room with expectations of the Marriot or other hotels you need to not stay here, but if you compare it to any well used Motel 6 I would say it is about the same. There was free internet, a great little pizza place and bar next door and a TV, microwave and phone in each room. Yes it was older but the area of downtown was the college area which was nice and it was about 5 blocks walk to the Blues festival which was great. One block from the free downtown tram. I would stay there again.

Great festival and looking forward to possibly checking it out next year..

Here is a little video clip of the dance floor pumping...

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Richards/Zydeco Hall of Fame Owner Passes Away

One of the two partners who own the Zydeco Hall of Fame Bar (formerly Richard's Club), passes away after a fight with cancer. Here is an article about the club and Michael DeClouet as it talks about his generous energy he gave toward keeping the club alive.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Zydeco Video Clips of the Week...

Here is a new Zydeco Line dance I saw at Solo Zydeco festival last year that I am starting to see in other festivals / bars...

Video Clip #2
There is on reason why Dwayne Dopsie Jr does not pay the big zydeco festivals.... SPEED... he plays just a bit to fast for us dancers... maybe as he gets older he will slow down a bit where we can keep up ;)...

Friday, April 30, 2010

Festival International Trip Report - Lafayette 2010

I had a first trip to the Festival International in Lafayette so I wanted to share a quick review and a few tips to share…

Prices are often cheap as I experienced as well. I got an Alamo car rental for eleven bucks a day and Motel 6 was thirty five a night. Other ways you can save a few bucks is to fly directly into Lafayette and stay at the Blue Moon Saloon where you can actually walk to the festival which is only a few blocks away. The other big plus is the festival is FREE.. Yep.. Unreal considering the level of talent that play from countries all around the world.

While the main days of the festival are Saturday and Sunday you can come in a day or two early or stay an extra day as there are festival event artists both on Thursday and Friday.

There are a ton of great Zydeco and Cajun bands that not only play at the festival, but play at surrounding locations incase you want to get away from the festival for a bit. I left the festival a little earlier on both Friday and Saturday nights as there were Zydeco bands (Jpaul and Keith Frank) at El Sido’s, a local bar about 10 minutes from the festival. The advantage of this festival is if your not a huge dancer, you have the best of both worlds as you can hang around with 90 percent of the crowd who are just watching the artists and not dancing. If the main reason your going there is dancing then you can dance at the festival and at the bars away from the festival.

Video Clips:

While at this festival your dancing on cement and there are not a lot of dancers compared to Cajun/Zydeco dedicated festivals, it is easy to ask for dances and everyone is very friendly. If you do go to a local Zydeco bar at night and if it is a young local crowd for a Zydeco dance and there are not a lot of tourists, do to peer pressure and other factors you can get turned down a bit more than what your normally accustom to at big festivals like festival Acadians, Gator By
the Bay etc.. The ideal situation would be to bring a small group of dancers with you so you have enough dancers who you know in addition to dancing with the local Zydeco dancers.

Here are a few experiences that you may get to enjoy while your in Louisiana..
1. Waffle House at 2am when the bars close…
2. Kicking around beer bottles and cans on the dance floor as your dancing
3. Loosing your voice from trying to yell over the music
4. Café Des Amis on Saturday morning for the Zydeco party.
5. Getting lost and asking for directions from a local resident.
6. Complete strangers coming up and talking to you.

Overall it a wonderful festival and there is a reason why Louisiana is
rated so high for tourism..

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Brian Jack new CD...

Just saw on where Brian Jack is putting out a new CD...

Here is his site...

Also found out you can purchase his CD on iTunes!!