Lulubell, one of the first to record Acadian music
Allons à Lafayette "Let's Go To Lafayette" 1928
This is the first recorded Cajun songs .
Harry Choates recorded the first national Cajun hit song, Jolie Blonde, in 1946 . Around 1946 he organized a band that he called the Melody Boys. Perhaps in honor of his daughter, Linda, he rewrote an old Cajun waltz, "Jolie Blonde" (Pretty Blonde) and renamed it "Jole Blon." He recorded the song in 1946 for the Gold Star label, owned by Bill Quinn of Houston. "Jole Blon" became a favorite in the field of country and western music and a standard number in Texas and Louisiana clubs and dance halls.
Hank Williams Jambalaya (on the Bayou) 1952
A melody based on the Cajun song "Grand Texas."
Grand Texas - Morand Cajun Band
Williams' song resembles "Grand Texas" in melody
only. "Grand Texas" is a song about a lost
love, a woman who left the singer to go with
another man to "Big Texas"; "Jambalaya", while
maintaining a Cajun theme, is about life, parties and
stereotypical food of Cajun cuisine.
Cajun Music - Acadian Festival in Louisiana
Listen to traditional Cajun Music
Wayne Perry Creole Blues
Cleoma Falcon J'Suis Partis Sur le Grand
Visit with legendary Cajun musician, DL Menard,
and learn about the music and Cajun French
of Vermilion Parish.
Cajun music, an emblematic music of Louisiana, is rooted in the ballads of the French-speaking Acadians of Canada. Cajun music is often mentioned in tandem with the Creole-based, Cajun-influenced zydeco form, both of Acadiana origin. These French Louisiana sounds have influenced American popular music for many decades, especially country music, and have influenced pop culture through mass media, such as television commercials . Cajun music, born from ballads, has transformed to dance music -- with or without words. The music was essential for small get-togethers on the front porch, an all night house dance known as a "bal de maison", or a public dance in a dance hall called a fais do-dos . Fais do-do is a name for a Cajun dance party, originating before World War II. According to Mark Humphrey's notes from the Roots n' Blues CD "Cajun Dance Party - Fais Do-Do", the parties were named for "...the gentle command ('go to sleep') young mothers offered bawling infants." He quotes early Cajun musician Edwin Duhon of the Hackberry Ramblers, "She'd go to the cry room, give the baby a nipple and say, 'Fais do-do.' She'd want the baby to go to sleep fast, 'cause she's worried about her husband dancing with somebody else out there."
The Balfa Brothers (Les Freres Balfas) helped keep traditional Cajun music alive in the 1960s, when it was in danger of disappearing. No band is more important to Cajun Music than the Balfas, and this is their most essential recording.
Dewey Balfa (March 20, 1927 -- June 17, 1992) was an American Cajun fiddler and singer who contributed significantly to the popularity of Cajun music. Balfa was born near Mamou, Louisiana. He is perhaps best known for his 1964 performance at the Newport Folk Festival with Gladius Thibodeaux and Vinus LeJeune, where the group received an enthusiastic response from over seventeen thousand audience members. He sang the song "Parlez Nous à Boire" in the 1981 cult film Southern Comfort, in which he had a small role.
Parlez Nous A Boire Artist: The Balfa Brothers Album: The Balfa Brothers Play Traditional Cajun Music: Vols. 1 & 2
'Do-do' itself is a shortening of the French verb dormir (to sleep), used primarily in speaking to small children. Comparable to the American English "beddy-bye", it is still commonly used by French-speaking people.
Zydeco (French: "les haricots", English: "snap beans") is a form of American roots or folk music, that evolved from the jure during the late 1800s call and response vocal music of the black and multiracial French speaking Creoles of south and southwest Louisiana.
During the early 20th century this soulful, heavily syncopated, indigenous roots music was discovered by ethnomusicologists and record labels alike. Usually fast-tempo, and dominated by the button or piano accordion and a form of a washboard known as a rub-board or frottoir, zydeco music was originally created at house dances where the blacks and free people of color of south Louisiana would gather for socializing.
Some assorted clips of the Balfa Brothers, the majority being a live clip at the 1979 Lafayette Tribute to Cajun Music festival from a tape produced by Michael Doucet ( A GREAT cajun fiddler).
D.L. Menard sings The Back Door with L'Angelus