HOT OFF THE BAYOU

IN ONE OF THE LAST BASTIONS OF MUSICAL REGIONALISM, CAJUN AND ZYDECO PERFORMERS MAKE THEIR OWN DISTINCTIVE, JOYFUL SOUNDS

It's nine in the morning, and Fred's Lounge is packed. please do not stand on the tables, chairs, cigarette machines, booths and juke-box! warns the sign on the wall of the tiny, bunker-like tavern on the main street of Mamou, Louisiana. Despite the early hour-the club is open just one day a week, Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.-the all-white crowd is washing down breakfasts of spicy boudin with cold, long-necked beers. As the onlookers tap their toes and stamp their feet, bandleader Don Thibodeaux, backed by an accordion, steel guitar, fiddle, drums and triangle, starts to sing: "Jolie blonde,...

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