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Lost Bayou Ramblers
New CD and 2005 photos
Click here for high res photos of the Lost Bayou Ramblers on Flickr

Alan LaFleur: the signatures on the top part
of his bass belong to members of the
Hackberry Ramblers.

Jon Bertrand

Bayou Perdu, the Lost Bayou Ramblers' second CD on Swallow Records, is filled with the same nothing-held-back energy that made the group's first CD a hit. The band recorded the CD in a studio, but listeners get to experience the passion that the the Lost Bayou Ramblers bring to their live gigs. The music is traditional, but the band does not sound like they are preserving a tradition: they are just playing the music they love and making it their own.

The CD includes two Hackberry Rambler songs, "Faut pas tu brailles" and "Une piastre ici, une piastre là-bas," as well as other songs in the swing tradition like the instrumental "Pilette [Vinton] High Society" and the rollicking "Tite fille de Lafayette," which is one of several tunes featuring André Michot on lap-steel in a duet with Louie Michot on fiddle.

In two of the original compositions, "Le Blues de la Ville Platte" and "Chers yeux bruns," Louie Michot describes Ville Platte women–gone but certainly not forgotten.  In "Mexico One-Step," Louie awaits the return of a girl who went to Mexico but meanwhile he's moving on with his life. In "North Louisiana Blues," he offers a Cajun's  instrumental response to the experience of living in Minden (which is far north of the Turkey Creek border)."Blue Moon Special," performed to the tune of "Les flammes d'enfer," is a tribute to a popular and unique Lafayette club and hostel.

"Papa Lou Hop" describes the dance step of his grandfather, Louis Michot, a talent hidden from us who grew up in Baton Rouge and associated Louis Michot only with politics and his franchise of Burger Chef fast food restaurants.

The last song, "Les temps après fini," is a beautiful tribute to the Michot brothers' maternal grandfather, Pierce Meleton, who died in 2004 in an accident with a cane truck. Louie's fiddle is a gift from his grandfather, who received it from his mother when he was five years old.

The title song, "Bayou Perdu," written by David Michot and Louie Michot, is based on a story told by Sydney Bourque (elaborated in the liner notes), whose photo is on the cover of the group's first CD, Pilette Breakdown. His daughter, Ethel Mae Bourque, is on the cover of Bayou Perdu. In a hidden track at the end of the CD, she sings a ballad that she sang for her father to ease his pain the week that he died. The liner notes provide more details and explain how to obtain a CD of Ethel's songs.

Click here to go to the Official Web Site of the Lost Bayou Ramblers, which includes contact information, a performance schedule, and more information about the band.

Click here to go to LSUE's first page on the Lost Bayou Ramblers.

Photos on this page were taken at the Liberty Theater in February and July 2005.

Shown performing in July 2005 at the Liberty are Louie Michot, Andre Michot, Chris "Oscar" Courville, Jon Bertrand, and Alan LaFleur.

The photo immediately above, taken the same night in July 2005 when the Lost Bayou Ramblers performed at the Liberty, shows members of the Ramblers playing with Chris Stafford on fiddle, Drew Simon on accordion, and, at far right, Eunice's own Coz Fontenot, one of the great old-style Cajun vocalists. Coz also sang with the entire band later in the program. 

Posted 12-31-05.

All photographs and text by David Simpson.

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