Buckwheat Zydeco Jackpot!

Buckwheat Zydeco Jackpot!
Buckwheat Zydeco : Jackpot!

This sounds perhaps a little sad but I discovered Buckwheat about 25 years ago as a teenager when my mom bought the soundtrack album for ‘The Big Easy’. Even in the dead of winter in Rochester NY his tracks on that album were able to evoke swampy hot good times. It made me want to learn how to play the accordion – something I still have not done and vow to do soon. The fusion of blues, R&B, funk, reggae and Creole that is Zydeco makes it one of the most vibrant of the roots music forms and has endowed it with the DNA complexity that makes for healthy evolution over the years. Buckwheat himself has been no less iconoclastic with his career and he happily touches on all of those styles on Jackpot! – his latest release. The bonus is that Buckwheat has also returned to his original instrument, the Hammond B3 on several songs. It made me want to hunt down some of the 70’s Buckwheat and the Hitchhikers and Clifton Chenier stuff that features his Hammond playing. In the excellent live show I was lucky to see last month, Buckwheat and his band were the ultimate Lousiana street band. Buckwheat is a warm and natural live performer and it is almost impossible for his shows not to turn into a party. Call me a romantic but there is something about watching a room full of people of all ages, races and sizes getting silly together and laughing and dancing that makes me happy.


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