Acadian festival opens today on musical note

Published on July 29, 2010

Music is a big part of this year’s Clare Acadian festival, from its opening concert today featuring the group 1755 to a closing show that includes Lennie Gallant, JP LeBlanc and BeauPhare.

Both concerts will be held at the Clare Social Club in Little Brook.

Besides 1755, the opening concert tonight, July 29, will include La Baie en Joie and a tribute to the late Herb LeBlanc, the popular Acadian musician who died last year.

Fais dodo en Acadie, an evening of music on Saturday at the Clare Social Club will feature The Lost Bayou Ramblers, Tee Mamou CajunBand and Cadiens.

Another musical highlight of this year’s Acadian festival is the President’s Night show set for Saturday, Aug. 7, featuring Pascal Lejeune, at the Marc Lescarbot Theatre in Université Sainte-Anne.

Among the musical acts that are part of the Clare festival are:

1755 - This group of musicians from New Brunswick is known as the ‘Rolling Stones of Acadie’ and has performed all over the world with their mix of instrumentals, traditional and original songs. They had a lot of success between 1975 and 1984 and were a driving force behind the Acadian musical movement on an international level.

Lost Bayou Ramblers - This band of five musicians from Louisiana started in 1999 and has a repertoire of early accordion dancehall tunes, pre-century fiddle tunes and Cajun swing. Their CD Live A La Blue Moon received a Grammy nomination and their recent releases have been receiving critical acclaim across North America and Europe.

Tee Mamou Cajun Band – This band specializes in traditional Prairie Cajun music. The band’s songs speak a lot about the hardships endured by the Acadians during the deportation, but they play in an upbeat way and try to inspire the audience to have a good time. One of the leading members of the group, Larry Miller, has done a lot of work to promote the French immersion programs at Université Sainte-Anne.

Cadiens - A local group from the Clare area that has adopted the Cajun style of music. Their upbeat music gets people on their feet and dancing.

Pascal Lejeune - This young Acadian musician was discovered during the 2003 Francofête festival in Moncton. He performs on stage along with two multi-talented musicians. Since 2007 he has performed over 200 concerts and released two CDs. He has played his music all over Canada, in France, Switzerland, Belgium and at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

BeauPhare - A group of musicians from Baie Sainte-Marie, BeauPhare play a vast repertoire of songs; from Acadian, Celtic and folk to traditional. They play instrumentals, their own songs and songs borrowed and adapted to their style.

JP LeBlanc - He started playing guitar when he was 11, and his father told him he should listen to blues music to become a good guitarist. A few weeks before he turned 16, he released a demo CD called Just the Beginning. His second album, Take Me Back, was nominated for blues recording of the year by the ECMA.

Lennie Gallant - Gallant is from Prince Edward Island and released his first album in 1988 called Breakwater. In 2002 he realized his dream of releasing a French album with Le vent bohème, his sixth studio album. He has received 14 East Coast Music Awards with his nine albums, two of which are in French.