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Cajun/Zydeco Music in the Movies

Beausoleil Cajun Band
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Thinking of this, one can turn to other parts of our culture that have been represented in the movies.  So I took some time to look for Cajun and Zydeco music in movies, other than documentaries.

The Big Easy (1987) one of the better known movies, features Beausoleil, Buckwheat Zydeco, and Dewey Balfa .  The opening scene flying over the swamp is accompanied by the Michael Ducet composition, Zydeco Gris-Gris.  There are also three Terrence Simien tunes in the movie:  Oh Yea Ya!; For Your Love I Would Pay Any Price; and, My Good Friend is Gone.  Zachary Richard sings Colinda and Dewy Balfa comes in with You Used to Call Me and Valse De Balfa.  Finally Buck’s Nouvelle Jole Blon, is added by Buckwheat Zydeco.  Along with the Neville Brothers and the Dixie Cups the music is fairly representative of a certain time in New Orleans and south Louisiana.

In addition to The Big Easy Terrence Simien has produced music for the soundtracks of The Princess and the Frog  (2009); Exit to Eden (1994); and A Murder of Crows. (1998)

Beausoleil does all the music for Belizaire the Cajun (1986) fifteen tracks mostly from the pen of Michael Ducet, including Madame Etiene, Grand Mallet, and Chanson De Vermillion. 

Dewy Balfa appears in the movie Southern Comfort (1981) playing Parlez Nous a’Boires.  Mark Savoy appears in the film playing accordion.  Ry Cooder is responsible for most of the rest of the music in this film.

Jackie Caillier & the Cajun Cousins produce the Cajun music for the German film, Schultze Gets the Blues, (2003) although it’s really suppose to be more about ZydecoJohnny Can’t Dance;  Mon Bon Vieux Mari; and Carolyn, Carolyn, are some of the Cajun tunes in the movie.

So, this is an interactive blog.  Do you know of others?  Write in and let us know.  In what movies have you heard Cajun or Zydeco music?   Who were the performers?  Let’s stay away from documentaries at this point – maybe we’ll go looking for the best documentaries at a later time.  Let’s hear from you!


Point of Interest:  Gina Forsyth’s CD Promised Land, which was released in February, was recently considered for a Grammy.  Word has it that the CD got to the round of semi-finalists.  Well done, Gina!  She will be playing songs from the album December 21 at the Neutral Ground.  The evening is being billed as the “end of the world” Decapocalypse Ball.”



More Movies

I like your posts as much as your great shows. Welcome to the aether.

There was the John Delafose appearance in Passion Fish:


Was that Nathan Abshire in Southern Comfort or am I just wishing it was so:


Most of the movies cited came from the golden age of cajun and zydeco's national popularity. The music followed the cajun and then zydeco dance craze of the 1980s and 1990s. The dancing and those beautiful accordion, fiddle and rub board sounds have been replaced with ... well, the same old crap from before the cajun and zydeco dance craze - the over-heard "Stairway to Freebird at Sweet Hotel Mustang Gloria..." Except on WWOZ.

Jamie Dell'Apa
Saturday midnight to Sunday 3am - music you've never heard by musicians you've never heard of..."

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