7th Annual Roy Carrier Tribute Dance Organized by Troy (Dikki Du) Carrier and Dick Brainard
Last year's Roy Carrier Tribute Dance https://ptatlarge.typepad.com/ptatlarge/2015/12/6th-annual-roy-carrier-tribute-dance-at-slims-yi-ki-ki.html
Seventh Annual Roy Carrier Tribute Dance
Feed N Seed Lafayette
106 N Grant Street
December 29, 2016
Southwest Louisiana is a petrie dish for heritage music. Mainly Cajun and Zydeco but a big enough dish to include honky tonk, country swing, even some rock n roll. The roots of Cajun and zydeco music are generations deep.
The Carrier family of Opelousas has been steeped in the zydeco tradition since before WWI when the Carrier Brothers played “La La” music at house parties, another piece of traditional life in the region. Over the years, "La La" morphed into zydeco music and, like Cajun music, is played in scores of cities and towns in southwest Louisiana.
In 1980, Roy Carrier, a cousin of the Carrier brothers, opened The Offshore Lounge in Lawtell, way out in the country. Every week, he invited young musicians to play with his band The Night Rockers, helping them learn their craft with the encouragement of the veterans. Somewhere along the way, Roy enrolled his sons Chubby and Dikki Du to join his band. Each son now fronts his own band, something that Papa Carrier would indeed be proud of.
Dikki Du, who, with Dick Brainard organizes the annual tribute, began playing the rub board at age 9 when Roy’s brother couldn’t get to the show. Nineteen years later, Dikki Du is still at it, as is his elder brother Chubby, now both accordion players.
Tonight’s tribute features Dikki Du and The Zydeco Krewe; Double Trouble, a young zydeco band fronted by twin brothers; The Corey Ledet Zydeco Band; and Jeffery Broussard and The Creole Cowboys, all well-known bands in these parts.
You may have never heard of zydeco or Cajun music. For many down here in southwest Louisiana, it’s mother’s milk that nourishes, an oasis where you can leave the troubles of the world behind, and offers a place to meet others who share the joy of listening to and dancing to the music.
Members of Double Trouble; Jeffery Broussard (red shirt, son of pioneering zydeco accordionist Delton Broussard); Dikki Du Carrier; Corey Ledet on stage...gives us a chance to hear how zydeco music evolves over two generations. Speaking of heritage music, Corey Ledet lists Clifton Chenier, Rockin’ Dopsie, Leon Sam of The Sam Brothers Five, Buckwheat Zydeco, Beau Jocque, John Delafose, and Boozoo Chavis as his major influences. Heritage? Check out these links and you'll see the growth of zydeco from its beginnings and be amazed at the family connections - fathers, sons, brothers, uncles, cousins, and in-laws in this unique community.
The band is primed; the whole place is jammed...
Willis Prudhomme, at 85, joined Zydeco Trouble onstage for a song. As accordionist and vocalist, Willis had his own band in 1970, before most on stage tonight were born. His style was more traditional rhythm & blues-ish with plenty of waltzes. By tracing his history as a son of a poor sharecropper, his own experience as a soybean and rice farmer, learning the rudiments of playing an accordion from Cajun accordionist Nathan Abshire, playing with legends John Delafose and Leo Thomas, fathers of two of today's most popular zydeco accordion players, you can see the arc of this regional genre that now plays before audiences in the USA and abroad.
Every member of every band on stage tonight is within not six but two degrees of separation from other musicians in southwest Louisiana...heritage music by family ties and friendship.
Photos by Paul A. Tamburello, Jr.