Archive Files of Cajun, Creole, and Zydeco Musicians
Posted between 1999 and 2008

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   Wayne Toups

           and Zydecajun

Click here for high res photos of Wayne Toups posted on Flickr.

Click here for Wayne Toups' Official Web Site or here for his MySpace Page.


Click on the thumbnails for larger versions of Wayne Toups at the Liberty Theater August 5, 2006, playing many of the songs from his 2005 CD. His last appearance at the Liberty was with Dewey Balfa. It took a while for him to return, but the large crowd really enjoyed the performance.

 Wayne Toups' 2005 CD, Reflections of the Past, is a collection of traditional Cajun songs produced by Richard LeBouef and released on D&R Records, P. O. Box 758, Jennings, LA 70546; 1-866-47CAJUN.

Click here for more information.


Come what may, Wayne Toups remains one of the most popular Cajun musicians in Louisiana and elsewhere in the United States and beyond. He spends a lot of time on the road, but there is probably no better place to see him than at his performances in Southwest Louisiana, where fans crowd the stage asking for autographs or just wanting to shake Toups' hand.

Toups was born in Crowley, the son of a rice farmer. He learned to play the accordion at age 13 and soon was winning accordion contests like the one held in Church Point. Along with his love of Cajun music, he also was drawn to rock groups like Lynard Skynyrd and R&B performers like Otis Redding.

Later, as he developed his own musical style, he incorporated influences from zydeco, fusing it all into unique high-energy, hold-nothing-back Louisiana music that he has named Zydecajun.  As he darts about the stage wearing those equally unrestrained tropical shirts, Toups supplies visual excitement that is just as energetic as his music.

Whatever other musical traditions he may draw on, Wayne Toups keep the Cajun tradition at the center of his music, as he makes clear in his 2000 release, Little Wooden Box. The title song, sung in English, is a kind of tribute to the accordion and the music on which Toups has built his career. He has a couple of other songs in English and a couple of French versions of English songs ("Les filles de la Ville," based on "New Orleans Ladies," and "Couillon," a version of  John Wesley Ryles' "Fool" that Toups first did in 1979). The rest of the songs are Cajun favorites: "Petite ou la grosse," "Jeunes filles de la campagne," "Lacassine Special," "La chanson de limonade," "La valse de musiciens," plus Clifton Chenier's "Tous les temps en temps." 

In his performances at music festivals in Ville Platte and Church Point depicted on this web page, most of his songs were also in French. His song "Late in Life" won the Cajun French Music Association's "Song of the Year" award in 1990, and Toups is a favorite at the CFMA annual awards festival.

Toups' first album, Zydecajun, was not released until 1987, after he had already established himself as a Cajun music star at the 1984 Festivals Acadiens in Lafayette. Johnny Can't Dance (he still regularly performs the title song) was released in 1988, followed by Blast from the Bayou in 1989, Fish Out of Water in 1990, Live! Down Home in 1992 (recorded in 1987 at the Crowley Rice Festival), Back to the Bayou in 1995, toups in 1997 (featuring blues and including several songs released as singles), and More Than Just a Little in 1998 (the single "Free Me" was on the Billboard chart of top country hits). Toups' signature song, "Take My Hand," was one of three songs featured in the movie Dirty Rice.

In addition to his own CDs, Toups has also performed with musicians like George Jones, Alan Jackson, Mark Chestnutt, Clay Walker, Sammy Kershaw, and others. Toups' web site provides additional information about his many accomplishments.


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The picture immediately above was taken at the Church Point Buggy Festival June 10, 2001. The other shots on this page of Toups wearing a green and blue shirt were also taken at the 2001 Buggy Festival. The pictures in which Toups is wearing a tank top were taken at the Buggy Festival in 1998. The other shots, in which Toups is wearing an orange and yellow shirt, were taken in Ville Platte in late June 2000 at Le Festival de la Viande Boucanée. Fans of all ages attend Toups' performances.

Wayne Toups at Festivals Acadiens in 2002

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Posted 1-5-03
Wayne Toups returned to Festivals Acadiens after a long absence, wearing the same style of cap that he wore during his first performance at the festival.

His festival set was entirely in French, and the crowd responded enthusiastically. Toups continues to enjoy the support of fans who have been with him more than two decades while generating a lot of excitement among younger fans as well.

All photographs and text by David Simpson.

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