The Search For Cajun Music PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 06 March 2004 00:00
 We are in the heart of Acadia, or Cajun Country. Some of the settlers came here in 1755 after being forced to leave their homes in Canada because they wouldn't pledge allegiance to the English Crown and the Anglican Church. There is a rich heritage of Spanish, American Indian, French Canadian and African ancestry in these parts and they are known for their spicy food and their music. We wanted to hear their music. So this afternoon we went with Betty and some other RVer's to Erath (pronounced Ee-rath) and the Café de Musée (seen in the picture) to hear some musicians jam. They were pretty entertaining mostly because the youngest man was around 55 and the rest were 70+ and they had been playing music all of their lives. The problem was that the longer they played, the more out of tune they became but we all had a good time anyway.
From there, Rick and I went to Mulate's, "The Original Cajun Restaurant" in Breaux Bridge about 40 minutes from Betty's RV Park. They serve genuine Cajun food while you listen to live Cajun music. This band was as young as yesterdays "jammers" were old. For those inclined there is dancing as well.
We learned that there are two kinds of music here, Cajun and Zydeco. Cajun music is a blend of German, Spanish, Scottish, Irish Anglo-American, Afro-Caribbean and American Indian influences with a base of western French and French Acadian folk tradition. Traditional Cajun music uses the fiddle, accordion, and triangle. Zydeco music has the same roots as Cajun, however has a heavier dose of Afro-Caribbean rhythms, blues and soul music. They also include the use of a metal washboard played with thimbles, spoons or bottle openers. We wanted to find some Zydeco music but ran out of time. I guess we'll have to do that the next time we are here. Wink