A Journey from R&B to Zydeco, Jazz to Country, Blues to Gospel, Cajun Music to Swamp Pop to Carnival Music and Beyond
What is it about Louisiana that breeds and attracts musicians? There are literally hundreds of them -- Dr. John, Harry Connick, Jr., Randy Newman, Trent Reznor, the Neville family, the Marsalis family -- all part of a tradition going back to Louis Armstrong, Fats Domino, Professor Longhair, Jelly Roll Morton, Buddy Bolden, and Mahalia Jackson. Tackling the monumental task of surveying the lush musical landscape of the state, Rick Koster examines all of the ingredients that went into creating this hotbed of talent -- the social influences, the musical traditions, the food, the drink, the heat -- and introduces us to the stars, both local and national, who have emerged. Discover the past and present of jazz, rock, zydeco, R&B, gospel, blues, country, and straight-up rock 'n' roll; learn too about the styles unique to Louisiana, like voodoo music, swamp pop, second-line brass bands, and Mardi Gras Indian tribes. With the laid-back charm and easy appeal that defines the state, Koster has created a survey as uniquely and teemingly rich with sound and story as the place itself.