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The American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress presents

The Homegrown 2010 Concert Series
Traditional Ethnic and Regional Music and Dance that's "Homegrown" in Communities Across the US

June 23, 2010 Event Flyer

Marce Lacouture with David Greely and Kristi Guillory
Traditional Cajun Music from Louisiana

Flyer for Marce Lacouture

Growing up in Texas and Europe, Marce Lacouture began singing professionally in Austin folk and rock bands, and in 1984 formed a duo with legendary singer-songwriter Butch Hancock. Together they recorded two collaborative albums, Yella Rose and Cause of the Cactus, and shared stages with such friends as Lyle Lovett, Lucinda Williams, Nanci Griffith, and Jimmie Dale Gilmore. In the early 1980s, Marce headed to Louisiana to immerse herself in her Cajun heritage. With the assistance of Catherine Blanchet, a folklorist and archivist of Cajun music, she began a years-long apprenticeship with ballad singers Lula Landry and Inez Catalon to learn the private side of French Louisiana music: a cappella ballads, drinking songs, game songs, and lullabies, which are often referred to as "home music." Lula and Inez worked with Marce on a daily basis and the three often performed at festivals throughout Louisiana. What started as an informal apprenticeship received support from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1986. Then in 1988, Marce received a Louisiana Division of the Arts (LDOA) apprenticeship to continue her work with Lula and Inez to preserve this valuable Louisiana French tradition. In 2001 she received a small grant to further study French music and lyrics. Marce's first solo recording, La Joie Cadienne/Cajun Joy, released in 2000 and 2004, is a loving tribute to her mentors, and features some of Cajun music's best tradition-conscious innovators: Michael Doucet, the members of Balfa Toujours, Sam Broussard, David Greely, and Sonny Landreth. Today, Marce's repertoire is an eclectic mix of styles in both French and English. A sought-after performer and teacher, Marce sings with Isabeau, a vocal group she founded in 2008, hosts a popular weekly public radio show, Lacouture Lagniappe, which can be heard Tuesdays, 1:00-2:00 p.m. Central Time on KRVS Radio External link (available online), and is starting a community chorus in the fall of 2010.

For the Homegrown Concert, Marce invited fellow Cajun musicians David Greely (fiddle and vocals) and Kristi Guillory (accordion and vocals) to join her in a reunion of sorts. In 2002- 2003, they were members of the unaccompanied vocal group, Veillée. All three are accomplished musicians dedicated to traditional Cajun music while contributing original compositions to the vitality of Cajun music in south Louisiana. Marce and David are featured in Southern Artistry,External link an online artist registry designed to showcase the South's artistic diversity and excellence.

David Greely's Cajun heritage simmered on the back burner while he was growing up near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, but after years of fiddling in other styles, he woke up to the music and language of his ancestors and was completely consumed. David seeks out old and rare tunes, matches new companion pieces to the old ones, and composes striking new melodies that meld Cajun roots with fiddle sounds he has heard in his travels worldwide. He arranges them with novel instrumentation and rich harmonies. He became fascinated with Cajun music when he first heard a recording by the Balfa Brothers. At a jam session held at the Savoy Music Store in Eunice, La., he met and played with 95-year-old fiddler Denis McGee and 18-year-old accordion player Steve Riley. David and Steve formed the Cajun band Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, which received its third nomination for a Grammy award in 2008, its 20th anniversary year. In his travels, he did research in archives, uncovering nearly forgotten tunes. In 1992, he received an LDOA apprenticeship to work with Cajun music ambassador and fiddler Dewey Balfa, a dream come true. In 2005, he received an LDOA Artist Fellowship in Folklife. After more than twenty years as a recording artist with the Mamou Playboys, he released his first solo album, Sud du sud/South of the South, in 2009, introducing his new acoustic format of a cappella ballads, waltzes, and reels which offer a range of emotions and dynamics from high passion to dry humor to tenderness, qualities that seem too intimate and subtle for a large dancing crowd. Some are renditions of field recordings, while others are original compositions.

Accordionist and vocalist Kristi Guillory grew up watching her guitarist grandfather, Jesse Duhon, who played with Octa Clark and the Dixie Ramblers during the 1930s. At age eleven, she picked up an accordion and started her immersion in Cajun culture and music learning from players such as Octa Clark, Leroy Broussard and Aldus Roger. Kristi formed her own band, Réveille, and won the Cajun French Music Association's New Dawn Award and Best Female Vocalist as well as Best New Recording awards. A native Cajun-French speaker, Kristi has a deep appreciation for the stories within the songs of Cajun music. After graduating high school Kristi took time off from music for a Francophone Studies degree and an M.A. in Folklore. At a dance, she met Yvette Landry and was easily coaxed into playing again in the band Bonsoir Catin along with Yvette, Christine Balfa Powell, and Anya Shoenegge Burgess, creating one of the few all-women Cajun bands. Their repertoire ranges from songs learned from archival field recordings of home music to dance-hall music to original compositions. Kristi is captivated by sad, pitiful Cajun songs, raunchy drinking songs, and the fantastical lyrics of a cappella ballads. She has also worked as a media folklorist and English instructor. Kristi now focuses her energies on music, performance, and writing.

Maida Owens
Program Director, Louisiana Folklife

American Folklife Center Logo The American Folklife Center was created by Congress in 1976 and placed at the Library of Congress to "preserve and present American Folklife" through programs of research, documentation, archival preservation, reference service, live performance, exhibition, public programs, and training. The Center includes the American Folklife Center Archive of folk culture, which was established in 1928 and is now one of the largest collections of ethnographic material from the United States and around the world. Please visit our web site.


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