2003 Mardi Gras Pictures

Three Generations of Castilles at LSUE
February 27, 2003

The performance of "Three Generations of Castilles" at LSUE Thursday, February 27, 2003, was not, strictly speaking, a Mardi Gras event, but it certainly got the audience in a Mardi Gras mood to sit back and enjoy some great Cajun music played by one the greatest Cajun fiddlers, Hadley J. Castille, with his son, Blake, on guitar, and his 13-year-old grandaughter, Sarah Jayde Castille Williams, joining them during the middle of the performance. Other musicians were Len Springer on fiddle, Kenny Alleman on drums and Rick Lagneaux on piano.

Hadley and Blake offered the audience a history of Cajun fiddling, with Sarah performing "Dance Carré" to illustrate the Dennis McGee fiddling style (Hadley introduced two of Dennis McGee's daughters, who were in the audience) and also "Blue Runner" in the style of Bébé Carrière and the Creole fiddling tradition. She also sang "Jolie Blonde" using Jimmy C. Newman's words but with Hadley and Len handling the fiddling in the tradition of Harry Choates, for whom the song became the biggest hit in the history of Cajun music. Hadley and Len played Hadley's tribute to Dewey Balfa and the Balfa Brothers, with fiddle music from the "Balfa Waltz" and Hadley's words (a song recorded on the Third Generation CD).

Of course, the group also performed some of Hadley's great story songs: "Panique et Lodie" and "200 Lines: I Must Not Speak French" from the CD Cajun Swamp Fiddler; "Giddy Up Ball" and "The Old Sharecropper's House" from Third Generation; and "Radio à Batterie" from Quarante Acres et Deux Mulés

And, of course, the group played "La Chanson de Mardi Gras," with Sarah doing a great job on the vocals.

And these are just some of the songs during over an hour and a half of great music that also featured some great storytelling as Hadley and Blake explained the background to songs.

The program was supported by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council as administered by the Acadiana Arts Council.

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Posted 2-27-03