Day 1 – Saturday, September 2nd – Cajun Zydeco
The Day 1 lineup are all nationally known and critically acclaimed bands that
spread the joy and irresistible dance rhythms of Cajun Zydeco music.
CZ and the Bon Vivants is a rip-roaring, foot-stomping, smile-’til-you-cry Cajun/Zydeco band that has audiences up and dancing in record time. Going strong since 2004, CZ and the Bon Vivants have played for the Sparks Nugget Rib Cook-Off, Pardi Gras, Colusa Crawdad Festival, Kaiser Rooftop concert series, Oakland noon summer concerts, Solano Stroll, Alameda Education Foundation, Julia Morgan Theater, mansions, wineries, boat cruises, festivals, and many a dance hall near you.
When it comes to down home creole music, Mark St. Mary and his band are the real deal. Awarded the “Best Zydeco Band” in 2007 by Bay Area Blues Society and crowned “The Delta King” at the Isleton Crawfish Festival, Mark’s been playing his traditional style of Zydeco music since the age of 12. Singing in both English & Creole French, Mark knows what it means to “Laissez les bon temps rouler!”
What an incredible journey it’s been! From the humblest beginnings in 1996, The BluesBox Bayou Band has been on a road of discovery for over fifteen years. Performing in the Louisiana tradition, they have performed up and down the west coast from Oregon to Southern Cal and have recorded over five studio CDs. The BluesBox Bayou Band is about making music for your feet, no pretenses, no big hair, no spandex pants… just a down home approach to making good music.
Geno Delafose is a zydeco accordionist and singer; one of the younger generations who created nouveau zydeco. His sound is deeply rooted in traditional Creole and Cajun music, and also country and western. His father is the famous zydeco accordion player John Delafose. Geno was born and raised in Eunice, Louisiana. At the age of eight, he joined his father’s band, the Eunice Playboys, as a rubboard player and continued to play with the band until his father’s death in 1994. Geno switched to the accordion in the early 1990s and started to play as an opening act for his father. In 1994, he debuted with album French Rockin’ Boogie on Rounder Records. The name of this album also became the name of his band with whom he still plays with today.
Day 2 – Sunday, September 3rd – Rockabilly
The line-up on Day 2 features a new musical genre for this event. Rockabilly is one of the earliest styles of rock and roll music, dating back to the early 1950s. It blends Western musical styles such as country with rhythm and blues, leading to “classic” rock and roll.
Mitch Polzak and The Royal Deuces was founded in California in 1999 and has been entertaining audiences world wide with their highly original sound since then. Mitch has worked and or recorded with such artists as Deke Dickerson, Peter Rowan of Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys, Don Maddox of The Maddox Brothers and Rose, Joe Clay, Lazy Lester, Gene Summers, Chris Sprague, Johnny Cuviello (Drummer for Bob Wills), and has published articles for Play Guitar magazine.
A San Francisco Bay Area rockabilly trio, playing red-hot original songs and great rockabilly songs from the 50’s onward….
“If Elvis had been a woman, he probably would have sounded just like Kim Lenz… — Rolling Stone ”
Los Angeles-based musician Kim Lenz has been cultivating her take on rockabilly since 1998, releasing three albums, including a pair for Hightone Records, and playing hundreds of dates around the world. Already a recognized force on the roots music scene, Lenz is now poised for a breakthrough with her upcoming album “Follow Me, scheduled for release on August 20th via Riley Records.
The Blasters have spent their lives exploring and expressing the deep and diverse musical legacy that is best described by the title of their first album: American Music. Blasters shows have been described as “a cross between Creedence and the Clash,” with a display of passion and energy only deepened by decades of experience. For all of the ways in which the world has changed in the past few decades, one thing is still guaranteed: the Blasters play American Music.
Second Stage Rhythms
If students from Sebastopol’s Twin Hills Middle School are among the crowds at this year’s much-loved Cajun Zydeco & Delta Rhythm Festival over Labor Day weekend, they might be more than a little surprised to see their math teach – Mr. Greenwald – rocking with his band on the 2 nd stage on Sunday, September 3rd .
Jason Greenwald – the band’s founder and leader – has been playing guitar for a lot of years – he insists his first gig was his 8 th grade talent show! He’s currently playing along with drummer Jamie Voss and bass player Paul Hoffman. Collectively they call themselves J. Edward & the Greenbacks and describe their major influences as multiple forms of Americana – a combination of country, blues and California Honky Tonk (think Chuck Berry and Buddy Holly!). As Jason puts it, “We’re a classic trio that’s like the Stanley Brothers meet Electric Mayhem.”
The Festival, sponsored by Sebastopol’s Sunrise Rotary Club, has been drawing Cajun music and dance fans for 22 years and has become a Labor Day tradition in West County. According to event Chairman Matt Witteman, “We’re always excited to have world-class talent like Geno Delafose and The Blasters at our shows, but one of the best parts for me is the opportunity to be able to showcase amazing local talent on our 2nd stage. This is our second year doing so and we hope to make it a tradition.”
Talent like Los Ritmicos, an exciting group of musicians who might best be described as a genuine ‘family affair!’ Leader Juan Martinez shares that the group (with multi-generational participants) has been playing since 1969. Currently comprised of 10 talented musicians, the group offers exciting and fun dance music with elements of Boleros (slow-tempo Latin music), Cumbias (a combination of West African, Amerindian and European music, originating on the Caribbean Coast of Columbia), Salsa, Rancheras (traditional music of Mexico, usually associated with mariachi) and cha-cha! Witteman sees Los Rimicos’ music as another “tributary” in the great river of rhythm that has flowed from West Africa and the Old World to New Orleans and beyond.
According to Martinez, the best thing about the band is that they’ve been together for so long and that it allows family members to play together. Los Ritmicos will be playing on opening day, Saturday, September 2 nd . Whether your passion is to sit back and enjoy exciting Latin American rhythms or to join in the dancing, you’re going to enjoy our local contributors.
So, what’s not to love? World-class Zydeco and Rockabilly musicians, local talent joining in the fun, Cajun food and drink (including crawfish and Hurricanes!), a huge shade cover, wooden dance floor and the knowledge that all proceeds will benefit West County nonprofits, schools and hunger, health and homeless programs.
Come join us at Ives Park in Sebastopol!
We’ll save a place for you!