Friday: Swamp Pop
We haven't listened to any Cajun music for more than a few Fridays now.
With all of the heat, humidity and rain we've had here along the east coast recently I've almost felt as if I were back in south Louisiana. May as well put a few pounds of crawfish in the steamer, pour a few cold ones, and make the best of it!
In the past we have heard from the famous Falcon Family here on the Bus. Master accordionist Joe Falcon was one of the first Cajun artists to record in the late 1920's. Johnnie Allan is the great-nephew of Joe Falcon. Johnnie Allan was born John Allan Guillot in 1938, in Rayne, Louisiana. His mother, Helen Falcon Guillot played guitar and her sister played triangle, while her father, Ulysse Falcon, played both accordion and fiddle.
Desite his famous family, Johnnie Allan was born into poverty. He spoke little English before he entered school. Johnnie and his brother worked the fields with their sharecropper father each morning before running off to school. "We'd work one year to pay last year's debts," he says.
Johnnie saved the money he earned selling seeds to neighbors and bought his first guitar at the age of six. He later joined The Scott Playboys, as a rhythm guitarist. By the age of fifteen, he switched to the steel guitar and joined up with accordion legend, Lawrence Walker. By the time he was eighteen he was struck by the music of Fats Domino and Elvis Presley. In 1957 he left Walker's band and formed his own Krazy Kats, playing rock-influenced Cajun music often referred to as "Swamp Pop".
Let's get this party started!