Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys

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Happytown – 2001

Rounder Records

1. Creole Stomp
2. Big Boy Waltz
3. Gros Jean/Big John
4. Seems to Me
5. Les vigilantes/The Vigilantes
6. La crève de faim/Starvation 2-Step
7. Patoutville
8. Poché Bridge
9. Mes enfants/My Children
10. Heat Lightning/Éclairs de chaleur
11. Pointe aux Chênes/Oak Point

Steve Riley – accordion, fiddle, vocals
David Greely – fiddle, tenor sax, acoustic guitar, mandolin, vocals
Kevin Dugas – drums, triangle, Roddie Romero, electric guitar, harmony vocals
Kyle Hébert – electric bass, C.C. Adcock, acoustic guitar, background vocals
Derek Huston – baritone sax
Sam Broussard – guitar
Linda Handelsman – piano

Produced by: C.C. Adcock


Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys’ eighth release opens a new window in the 21st century Cajun world. Happytown folds time in on itself, examining the emotions of Creole slave poetry with burly, serpentine electric guitar; tightly interlaced fiddles that sigh as if inches away from the ear; drum loops and digital samples of black juré singing from the thirties; and the fever of full bore diatonic accordion revelry. The album features acoustic recordings made on the banks of the Atchafalaya Swamp, as well as lyrics that visit the tenderness of forbidden love and the brutality of a midnight fistfight. Happytown takes the band beyond the realm of mimicking old records, beyond hybrids of ethnic rock, into a new world of true expression that carries tribal memory through today and into the future.