Pete Fountain- I Love Paris

Here is a record for $1.00 that had a bunch of songs that I regularly post on this page.

From Pete Fountain, that purveyor of Dixie Land Jazz, a record of French songs, proper.  Recorded for Coral Records and released in 1962, this one contains all the big French standards, ” Autumn Leaves”, “La Vie En Rose”, “April In Paris”, “C’est So Bon” , and the title track.  Pretty good stuff.

Fountain is backed up by Jack Sperling on drums, Stanley Wrightman on piano, Morty Cobb on bass, and Godfrey Hirsch on the occasional vibe.  Fountain is also backed by horns and strings conducted and arranged by Charles Bud Dant.

For a sample, I was really hard not to post any of the songs above as they seem to make their way on this blog more times than not.  Well, I was really drawn towards “Frere Jazz”, a Dixie Land interpretation of the kids song, “Frere Jacques”.

Anyway, in spite of keeping this post short today, this is a great little album. Satisfactory.

Ambrose Thibodeaux-More Authentic Acadian French Music

Ok.  I messed up the math on this.  I thought it was $5 with discount but in reality it turns out it was $5.60.  My bad.  Probably should re-adjust the threshold for inflation.

Acadian music is the basis of Cajun music which has been blended with creole to form zydeco.  This style was rooted from the ballads of the French Canadians who settled to North America from France in the 17th and 18th centuries and were forcefully migrated from Eastern Canada to Louisiana during the Great Expulsion of 1755-1764.  I could fill this post up about the rich history of all this or touch on the fact that my late grandma had Acadian roots but it is Monday and am just not in the mood today to take this any further.  Google it if you want to learn more.  For the sake of this record I will over simplify: Acadian music = Cajun music. 

Ambrose Thibodeaux, born in 1903, learned to play accordion at age 15 and was playing dances by 17.  After putting it aside from the married/farmer life, he picked it back up in the 60’s during what was a revival of French Cajun music.  During this time, he played festivals, appeared on radio and tv, won awards, and even traveled to France.  The most notable appearance, according to what scant information I could pull up, was his work on the Revon Reed Radio show out of Eunice, LA.  He performed on Saturday mornings for the good part of five years.  Thibodeaux past away in 1995 .  I am not sure when but he did get inducted into the Cajun Music Hall of Fame (again in Eunice).  His bio on this site is where I pulled most of this info from.

Link to Cajun Music Hall Of Fame

This album, released by La Louisianne Records, in 1966?, features traditional Cajun French songs as well as original compositions by Thibodeux.  Pretty good music and very authentic and representative of the genre.  Thibodeux’s accordion is backed up by the violin of Leon Doucet, the guitar of Nelson Bergeron, the bass of Jack LeBlanc, the occasional vocals of Gervis Quibodeaux, and the triangle of Elmer Thibodeaux.  Not sure if that is a relation of not.

There were a bunch of songs I liked, but in the end, I went with “Two-Step De Musician” simply because it had vocals.

Good little record.  Satisfactory. I probably did want to add more to the post but the time constraints of pulling together next months records and working on two musical acts while pulling down a nine to five have led to this brevity.

Queen Ida and the Bon Temps Band- Play the Zydeco

Friday could not come fast enough this week.  And what a way to kick of the weekend with some zydeco.  Well, as the Stanley Cup Finals are winding down, so is crawfish season.  Did not eat a whole lot of it this year.  In fact, I ended up eating it once at Ragin’ Cajun this season.  It is hard to judge how well this season was.  I know last season was pretty massive.  Anyway, this was $3.00.

My first memory of Queen Ida is seeing her on Saturday Night Live in 1985(Pee Wee Herman was the host).  This was in the middle of SNL’s decline of sorts, the season that critics called awful but what I quite enjoyed. (For the record, the critics also hated the late 80’s/early 90’s which were probably SNL’s best years).  Anyway, during this time, top musical acts were avoiding the show somewhat in the 1980’s, forcing SNL to take chances on bands that were not necessarily mainstream. Not today.  SNL does not take chances anymore like they used to, music wise.  The music on the show today has become quite boring in comparison (although the fact that I am 40-something and these bands are for 20-somethings and teens may have something to do with it.) Anyway, I rambled enough with this subject.

I believe this is Queen Ida’s first album.  Released in 1976 on GNP Cresendo, this album features Queen Ida’s brother Al, on guitar and vocals as well as .her older brother Wilbert on rub board. Pretty good album as was the last one of hers I posted.  As for Ida, according to wikipedia, she retired in 2010 but still cooks for her family (see last post of hers for more detail about her cooking or Google it).

I had a bunch of choices for samples.  Favorite songs of mine included “Lucille Kanai”, “The Cherry Tree Song” and “Tayo Zydeco”.  I did decide to go with the opener”Rosa Majeur” or Rosa of Legal Age.  I also went with “Creole De Lake Charles” which was Ida and her family hailed from before moving out to the San Francisco Bay Area.

Great little record.  Satisfactory.

The Seekers- Georgy Girl

DSCN4635 (794x800)Well, it was bound to happen eventually, but I ended up buying two copies of this record.  Both were $1.  I did a blog on the Seekers last year.  If you remember, I have tried real hard to like them and in all fairness, they do have some really good numbers, but overall, I like my folk music with rough edges.  So it is kind of strange that this would be the band I ended up doubling up.  the-seekers-gallery-22-wfkouylheuto-wfzofmcshpvt

Link to Earlier Seeker’s Post

This was the seventh album of the Seekers and apparently, in the US, it was an abridged version by Capitol Records of EMI’s Come the Day, both released in 1966. One source lists it as 1967.  I am too busy to split hairs on this point.  Anyway, it contains their big hit, “the title track “Georgy Girl” from the 1966 British movie of the same name. If you read this blog, at the very least in the last week, you know that this song as well as the movie is one of my favorites.  This is pretty much why I bought the album. I realize I posted this clip on my last Seeker’s post, but Damn it, I like it.

This album is ok.  There are some pretty good moments. Aside from my obvious love of the title track, I really liked their versions of “Red Rubber Ball” and “California Dreamin”.  It also has decent enough versions of “Yesterday”, “Last Thing On My Mind”, “Come The Day”, and “Turn, Turn, Turn”.  I still reserve my original point, that I , personally, prefer a less fine tuned folk music product, but having said this, this album is not too bad and is probably my favorite of theirs.DSCN4636 (800x787)

For a sample, I was drawn to Doug Kershaw’s “Louisiana Man”.  I think it is kind of perverse having these fine Australian singers from the UK sing a nice, clean ditty about swamp life. It also underscores the influence of Kershaw (who I posted last week) beyond his home state, especially in an age before internet.seekers-729-20130910140938412341-620x349

I like this album and it is probably the reason I keep buying Seeker’s albums despite my objections.  Satisfactory

Queen Ida and the Bon Temps Band- Zydeco a la Mode

DSCN2355Here’s to a new month of Donkey Show.  This was one dollar.  I have not put a Zydeco record on yet.  I had a full weekend and unfortunately, am running behind on the site. Oh well.queen-ida-jazz-fest-photo-jef-jaisun

Ida Lewis Guillory, or Queen Ida was the first female accordion player to lead a zydeco group  Born in Lake Charles in 1929, Ida would move to Beaumont at age 10 and then to San Francisco at 18. She was born into a musical family.  Moreover, the band on this record is definitely a family affair with her brother, Al Lewis, on guitar and vocals and her son, Myrick Guillory on percussion. Queen Ida has played a good chunk of festivals as well as an 1985 appearance on Saturday Night Live. I seem to recall her playing outside at the Astrodome during the Biggest Party in Texas-Houston in 1989. Regardless, she released around 12 albums and won a Grammy in the process.  These days, Queen Ida is mostly retired.

The record, as Bart Simpson would put it, sounds pretty much like any other zydeco album to your average listener.  However, the album is a pretty good collection of tracks. Released in 1977, it was her second album.  Highlights include “Frisco Zydeco”, ‘Moi Mademoiselle”, Colinda”, and “Bayou Lover”.  A lot of the songs seem to have the first verse in French and the second in English.

DSCN2356For a sample, I went with “Cest La Vie” as it is one of the few zydeco songs in done in a minor key.

Queen Ida & Her Bon Ton Zydeco Band perform at the Santa Monica Pier on Thursday, Aug. 2, 2007 during the 23rd Annual Twilight Dance Series.

Satisfactory record.  Hopefully, I can get caught up with the blog this week.