[dropcap]Drew was born and raised in Lafayette, Louisiana and developed an interest in Cajun music in his late teens. At 20, he began playing the accordion and started learning the words to many of the songs in his huge Cajun music repertoire. [/dropcap]
Although not owning his own accordion until he was 25, Drew has been a go to guy for many Cajun bands in need including Balfa Toujours, Jesse Lege and the Lake Charles Ramblers, Les Bassettes, The Lafayette Rhythm Devils, Paul Daigle and Cajun Gold, High Performance, and the Savoy Family band to name a few. He is deeply influenced in his style of music by dancehall legends Walter Mouton, Aldus Roger, Jesse Lege, Belton Richard, and Lawrence Walker. Fluent in french, Drew has been blessed to travel the world playing and teaching for the past 13 years as drummer/vocalist for the GRAMMY nominated Cajun band, the Pine Leaf Boys and 47 states.
[dropcap]When we talk about Zydeco royalty, the Ardoin family name is probably the most revered. As the nephew of the legendary Alphonse ‘Bois Sec’ Ardoin, Harold Guillory takes his seat at the top table.[/dropcap]
Back in 2000 Harold started his own television show ‘Louisiana Zydeco Live’. Prior to that he became a popular and well known musician playing rubboard in his cousin Chris Ardoin’s band Double Clutchin.
Harold has travelled the world playing Zydeco music and teaching dance lessons, visiting such places as Japan, the UK and Europe; as well as many states in the US.
When people speak of the best Zydeco dancer, instructor and rubboard player, no one compares to the iconic Harold Guillory!
[dropcap]Los Gallos was formed by Manolo Gonzales in 1999. He had seen Flaco Jimenez perform in Paris the year before and fell in love with the music.[/dropcap]
Manolo already played bass, banjo and guitar, so he had a bajo-sexto made by a Parisian luthier, which he learned to play watching videos of Max Baca. He and his friend, Thierry Carpentier, who had just started playing accordion, began playing songs learned from Flaco CDs between sets at their regular Disneyland Paris music job. Another friend, David Rolland, joined them soon after, playing bass and singing harmony.
David and Manolo decided to go to San Antonio the following year for the Tejano Conjunto Festival. Manolo bought a bajo-sexto from the legendary Don Martin Macias and all the CDs he could find, returning to Paris with a stack of over 40 new Tex-Mex albums. Joined by two other friends, they began playing the music seriously, at some of Europe’s biggest festivals, opening once for Dwight Yokam. They quickly developed a strong reputation and were twice invited to return to the Tejano Conjunto Festival not as spectators, but as performers. Flaco Jimenez heard one of their original songs, “Tan Sola”, and liked it so much he recorded it on his album Squeeze Box King (2003).
After ten years of touring, and two albums, Thierry took a break to start a family. Manolo and David started playing Cajun music, which carved a steady path for them for another ten years, though there were occasional sold-out Los Gallos reunion concerts during the hiatus.
[dropcap]Sister Suzie hails from the northernmost tip of Northumberland, it was her love of singing R&B that took her first to New Orleans, and then across the UK to Hastings on the East Sussex coast, where she has made her home for the last few years.[/dropcap]
While she was appearing with many bands here and abroad, she made her first solo EP in July 2016. From the session players she hired for that recording Suzie asked guitarist Matt Jackson and drummer Brian Nevill to help form her first band. Soon after bassist Darren ‘Eddie’ Edwards was recruited to complete the core of the group, together with a rotating sax section that has included Mike Paice, John Wallace, Nick Lunt and Aaron Liddard.
Regular appearances in London followed. It was in July 2017, just after their first trip to Europe, that Suzie and the band released their first single on Suzie’s own label. They are currently working on their first album, which should be released this year. Watch out for it!
She’s a little lady with a big voice who’s fresh and energetic on the stage giving everything she has into every note she sings.
Bobcat Billy’s Moonshine Mission
[dropcap] Bobcat Billy’s Moonshine Mission were formed around 5 years ago, predominantly made up from members of the long running popular Rhythm & Blues Ensemble ‘Zoot Serious and the Bellyful of Bop’[/dropcap]
Bobcat Billy’s play a mix of Rock ‘n’ Roll and Rockabilly. Well known for playing a good selection of classic rock n roll favourites, they also put our own twist on some more modern tunes.
They cover artistes as far and wide as Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, The Rolling Stones, Imelda May, Led Zepplin, Elvis Costello, The Yard Birds and many more.
Above all the Bobcats are the best good rockin, good time dance band around!
Bobcat Billy’s Moonshine Mission line up…
Nick Haggart – Lead Vocals.
Nick Down – Lead & Rhythm Guitar.
Fergus Mulcahy – Trombone.
Ian Johnson – Double Bass / Electric Bass.
Jonathan Rowland – Drums.
The Zydeco Diamonds
[dropcap]The Zydeco Diamonds have a musical pedigree and collective history in Zydeco music which spans over 20 yrs.[/dropcap]
Featuring top musicians, well respected as some of the finest exponents of Cajun and Zydeco music outside of Louisiana.
The Zydeco Diamonds are focussing on a more traditional old school style of Zydeco, moving away from the modern ‘hip hop influenced sounds which have become mainstream in Louisiana dance halls today, instead embracing the older unique sounds and irresistible grooves of a sometimes forgotten golden age of Zydeco, whilst adding their own fresh spice and flavour to the mix.
The band have been influenced and inspired by musicians such as Corey Ledet, Jeffery Broussard, Cedric Watson to name but a few. These young Louisiana musicians are very much looking back to their Creole heritage and roots, re-discovering and re-popularizing the musical style passed down from generations before, and adding a fresh contemporary flavour which is once again packing the dancehalls of Louisiana and beyond.
The Zydeco Diamonds deliver irresistible, funky, foot stomping high energy Zydeco dance music, pure and simple, loud and direct, from your head down to your dancing feet.
Accordion – Gavin Lewery
Drums – Andy Watson
Guitar – Kev Torne
Bass – Rob Hill
[dropcap]The Flatville Aces play traditional Cajun music from south-west Louisiana, a potent mix of fiddle and accordion, French singing and infectious dance rhythms, and feature their strongest line-up to date.[/dropcap]
Accordionist Gavin Lewery is admired as one of the finest exponents of the music outside Louisiana. He also fronts the highly regarded Zydeco Diamonds and his compositions have been recorded by several Louisiana musicians.
Fiddler and founder member Jock Tyldesley has played and toured at home and abroad with such US greats as Balfa Toujours and Sheryl Cormier, the “Queen of Cajun Music” as well as accompanying the late, legendary Eddie Lejeune on his last three UK tours.
Andrew Tyldesley provides the strong, rolling rhythm guitar back-up honed to perfection by touring with Eddie Lejeune and Sheryl Cormier.
Bass player and part-time fiddler Vera van Heeringen has also toured with Eddie Lejeune. The Flatville Aces are one of the few bands to feature the smooth, soaring twin fiddle sound.
Andy Watson completes the line-up on drums and percussion, a master of the Louisiana style and the drummer most called upon by UK and US bands to play Cajun and Zydeco music.
Come along and bring your dancing shoes!