September 25, 2016

LAY YOUR BURDEN DOWN:

Musician Buckwheat Zydeco, who took genre mainstream, dead at 68 (Deutsche Welle, 9/25/16)

"This is one of the world's true genius musicians. A completely natural musician who could just fit in in any scenario," Fox told The Associated Press news agency. "He had this incredible charisma both onstage and personally," Fox continued. "To the end of his days with all the stuff that he'd done, all the awards, he was still the same Stanley Dural Jr. who was picking cotton when he was 5 years old."

One of 13 children, Dural earned his nickname because of his signature braided hair when he was younger that resembled the character Buckwheat from "The Little Rascals" television show. His father played the accordion, but the younger Dural preferred listening to and playing rhythm and blues and learned to play the organ. In the late 1950s, still a teenager, Dural was backing up musicians and eventually formed his own band. In 1976 he joined legendary zydeco artist Clifton Chenier's Red Hot Louisiana Band as an organist, launching an important musical turn in his career.
"I had so much fun playing that first night with Clifton. We played for four hours and I wasn't ready to quit," he said in comments quoted in his obituary.

Zydeco music was once largely unknown outside of Louisiana, where people would often drive for miles to small dancehalls where zydeco bands featured an accordion and a washboard. But Dural helped bring the genre to a larger audience after signing a five-album deal with Island Records in 1987.

Posted by at September 25, 2016 7:20 AM

  

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