|Dimensions||22 × 16 × .50 cm|
Australia’s finest tribute to the music & language of the Cajuns – “Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band” play the traditional music of southern Louisiana.
The band was formed in 2009 through a mutual obsession with authentic Cajun music. Geoff and Andrew Le Blanc (who are descendants of the Acadians), Richard Klein, Nicola Strating and Lachlan Dear perform Cajun songs and dance music with energy and style. They present a relaxed acoustic concert performance to delight audiences young and old.
Cajun music, like its black cousin Zydeco, is much more than an obscure folk form. It is a living popular dance music that has evolved over the centuries to its current form. “Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band” continues the age-old tradition of playing Louisiana French music. From soulful waltzes to lively two-steps and Creole blues, their repertoire tells of good times and hard times – a clear reflection of the Cajun people. The songs are performed mainly in Cajun French (a New World vernacular which has evolved over three centuries).
Seeking out recordings of the greats, travelling to Louisiana and meeting living legends of Cajun music has motivated band members to learn, practise and teach. Their many influences include The Balfa Brothers, fiddle players Dennis McGee, Wade Frugé & Canray Fontenot, and accordion players Nathan Abshire, Ray Abshire Lawrence Walker, Amédé Ardoin, Bois-Sec Ardoin and Marc Savoy.
Andrew, Geoff, Richard, Nicola and Lachlan have been enthusiastic, active performers and session players at many festivals around Australia and the world over in the last thirty years including The National Folk Festival (2010), Kelly Country Pick (2010), Blackwood & Yarra Junction Fiddler Conventions (2010), Harrietville Bluegrass & Country Music Convention, Woodford, Port Fairy, Nannup, Cygnet, Fairbridge and Brunswick Music Festivals to name a few. High calibre sessions are also guaranteed when the band finds their way to your festival. Not only playing Cajun music in the finest sense, individual members play a library of Irish jigs & reels, Appalachian fiddle tunes, Klezmer music, bluegrass and sing old-timey songs and contemporary ballads.
Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band is inspired to share with you their Cajun music and heritage.
Laissez les bon temps rouler! (Let the good times roll!)
BAND MEMBER BIOGRAPHIES
Andrew Le Blanc Andrew plays a number of instruments though he is perhaps best known for his soulful renditions of Cajun songs and as front man for the famed Le Blanc Bros Cajun Aces throughout the 1990’s. A mainstay in the Melbourne Irish scene, Andrew has played with bands since 1979 including Poteen, The Street and The Lost Chords.
In 2005, Andrew performed at the National Folk Festival with the Ray Abshire Band – playing guitar and singing with one of Cajun music’s purist accordionists. Andrew fluently speaks French and sings in the distinct dialect of Cajun French (the natural tongue adapted by the Cajuns to suit the New World). Andrew is inspired to continue sharing his Cajun music and heritage with audiences.
Geoff Le Blanc Geoff had been playing folk and Irish traditional tune styles on button accordions for many years when he stumbled on his first recordings of Cajun music. Through album cover notes Geoff discovered his own family history – a wonderful and tragic tale of the first days of European settlement on the North American continent. He was inspired to tour Louisiana and there met many masters of Cajun music.
Geoff plays Cajun accordion – a specific model of single row diatonic button accordion, and the only type of accordion played by the Cajun people in their own style of dance music. Geoff‘s technique is reminiscent of the traditional players of Cajun music’s classic years (mid 20th century). Geoff’s accordions are made by Marc Savoy (Eunice, Louisiana) a world-renowned instrument maker, player, teacher and a devoted preserver of Cajun culture.
Geoff has played in bands including Le Blanc Bros Cajun Aces, Cajun Roux, Crawfish Dave and Malarkey.
Richard Klein Richard was born 1957 in Orange, New Jersey (USA). He began playing fiddle and singing at age 15. By the mid 1970’s Richard was hooked on Cajun music. After years travelling and busking throughout Europe and Scandinavia, Richard returned to the USA in 1982 and travelled to Louisiana. Richard had the great fortune to meet Delilah Lewis (of the Creole Belles), and was taken to the living rooms of some of the greatest living legends of Cajun & Creole music: Denis McGee, Wade Frugé, Bois-Sec Ardoin.
Richard immigrated to New Zealand in 1997 and there met the late, legendary pedal steel guitar player, Winnie Winston, and formed the Ar-Kay Cajun Band. In 2005, Richard travelled to Australia and performed at the National Folk Festival with the Ray Abshire Band. It was at the National Folk Festival in Canberra that same year that Richard met Andrew and Geoff Le Blanc. Firm friendships were formed and fine musical projects inevitably followed. Richard continues to travel the world sharing his knowledge and skills conducting workshops and performing.
Nicola Strating Nicola grew up in a family where music is a staple of life. A member of Celtic trio, The Beenies, she was a veteran of the folk festival circuit whilst in her teens. Awards and accolades have been plentiful.
Cajun music and the irresistible rhythms of the bayous captured Nicola in the early 2000’s. Nicola plays the Cajun triangle (“Tee Fer” in Cajun French) – a percussion instrument made from the tine of an old horse drawn hay rake. Nicola joined the Ray Abshire Band at the 2005 National Festival in Canberra. Nicola’s authentic and unique ring is now world famous.
Having recently travelled widely and lived in the UK, Nicola is back in Australia to again share her tales and talent.
Lachlan Dear Lachlan accompanies the Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band on double bass. Recognised as one of Australia’s finest musicians and in demand here and abroad, Lachlan is also a member of Australia’s most traditional bluegrass band Hardrive. With 6 years experience on the road with bands before his eighteenth birthday and with a couple of country music awards under his belt, it is an absolute pleasure to have Lachlan’s solid rhythm, knowledge, deep understanding of Cajun music, and fine humour driving the band on stage and off.
Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band
CD review by Rick Stephens
Melbourne’s own tribute to the music and language of the Cajuns – Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band, play the traditional music of southern Louisiana.
I feel down in the boondocks at an urban moonlight Cajun party when I listen to the CD.
I see images of long legged girls with long, springy, dark, shiny hair swaying to the groove in long frocks, paper lanterns hanging from the trees all round a big campfire.
I see men bogging into sweet and spicy baked chicken with beer rice and bayou boogie, slurpin’ buckets of Indian Pale Ale and a band on the front porch, kids kicking up a dust storm and everyone is happy!
The Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band has an infectious Cajun groove.
In the middle, the accordion grinds out distinctive rhythmic melodies with a lot of forward drive from the swinging double bass and clanging triangle.
Solid guitar rhythms and beautiful double stopped fiddle playing provide the ‘out on the front porch’ authenticity.
The band plays with authority and displays an amazing, foot tapping, togetherness.
The vocals are faithful and believable with flowing energy backed up well by the accordionist.
Harmonies are well blended.
I love the CD and have played it a number of times.
At the moment, it’s near the top of my play list when I’m looking for something happy and mood lifting.
The Le Blanc Bros Cajun Band are: Andrew Le Blanc – vocals, guitar; Geoff Le Blanc – Cajun accordion; Richard Klein – fiddle, vocals; Nicola Strating – Cajun triangle, fiddle, vocals; and, Lachlan Dear – double bass.
7 in stock (can be backordered)