CD The Zydeco: The Early Years (CD 685245),
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The Zydeco: The Early Years

  • 1. Allons A Lafayette - Wallace Gernger/Paul McZiel/McZiel & Gernger
    2. Tap Dance - Wallace Gernger/Paul McZiel/McZiel & Gernger
    3. French Waltz - Wallace Gernger/Paul McZiel/McZiel & Gernger
    4. Rayne One Step & Zydeco Sont Pas Sale - Sidney Babineaux
    5. Zydeco Sont Pas Sale - Albert Chevalier
    6. Moman Couche - Albert Chevalier
    7. Ma Petite Fille - Albert Chevalier
    8. Bernadette, Cher - Albert Chevalier
    9. You Havin' a Good Time - George Alberts
    10. King's Zydeco - Lester Herbert/Peter King & Hebert
    11. Lafayette Zydeco - Lester Herbert/Peter King & Hebert
    12. Jole Blonde - Willie Green
    13. Baby Please Don't Go - Willie Green
    14. Tell Me Pretty Baby - Willie Green
    15. Announcement & Green's Zydeco - Willie Green
    16. They Call Me Good Rockin' - Herbert Sam
    17. Clifton's Blues - Clifton Chenier
    18. Louisiana Stomp - Clifton Chenier
    19. Bon Ton Roulet - Clarence Garlow
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): CD-307

  • Credits
    EngineerChris Strachwitz

    Personnel: Clarence Garlow (vocals, guitar); Clifton Chenier, Herbert Sam, Albert Chevalier, Willie Green , William Green (vocals, accordion); Wallace Gernger, Lester Herbert (vocals, washboard); George Alberts (vocals); Pete King , Robert Clemon, Paul McZiel, Joel Savoy, Sidney Babineaux (accordion); Johnnie Mae Brown (piano); Robert Pete, Jack Fountleroy, John Marshall (drums); Clifton Edmond, Edmond Savoy (washboard).
    Recording information: Houston, TX (1949-1962); Lafayette (1949-1962); Lake Charles (1949-1962); Rayne (1949-1962).
    Photographer: Chris Strachwitz.
    Zydeco: The Early Years doesn't necessarily represent the early years of zydeco itself, which had probably been around in several variations for decades prior to these tracks, most of which were recorded in the early '60s. This was still years before zydeco had reached anything close to the level of international esteem it now enjoys, and Chris Strachwitz, who made most of the recordings, was among the first to recognize the form's importance. In comparison to the boisterous full sounds of zydeco stars of the '80s and '90s, this is fairly primitive-sounding; usually there's nothing more than accordion, vocals, and washboard, although drums are sometimes present. It could use more variety, frankly, but these are significant documents of how zydeco sounded when it was music for friends and house parties rather than records or House of Blues clubs, and the music -- by artists including Albert Chevalier, Pete King, Willie Green, and Sidney Babineaux -- does have a rough, unforced, upbeat charm. As a nice bonus, both sides of Clifton Chenier's 1954 debut single are included (they're far more R&B-influenced than the field recordings here), and there's a 1949 jump blues-zydeco hybrid by Clarence Garlow, "Bon Ton Roulet." ~ Richie Unterberger

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