By The Chicago Defender
World-renowned musician C.J. Chenier and the Red Hot Louisiana Band make their Beverly Arts Center debut at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 23, at 2407 W. 111th St. Chicago.
The group brings their unique New Orleans style for an evening of Zydeco and Blues.
Chenier, Creole-born, was raised in an indigenous American culture with its distinctive language, cuisine and music. He delivers soulful vocals along with masterful accordion driven Zydeco and Blues. Chenier, a GRAMMY® nominated, world-renowned musician and recording artist, has performed alongside many internationally recognized artists including his GRAMMY® awarded father, Clifton Chenier (“The King of Zydeco”), Paul Simon, Joe Sample and Ray Parker, Jr. He appeared on the Jon Stewart Show, CNN and was featured on VH1 and Entertainment Weekly. He has exhibited his musicianship at many large festivals and venues such as the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Chicago Blues Festival and Austin’s SXSW Music Conference.
In addition to his GRAMMY® award nomination in the Best Regional Roots Music Album category, C.J. has received many major awards including the Living Blues Critics’ Poll Award, Indie Award (from AFIM) for Best Zydeco Album, Coups de Coeur (Blows of Heart) Blues Category Award from l’Académie Charles Cros (France) and Best of the Beat Best Zydeco Album (Offbeat Magazine).
Zydeco is a type of music that evolved from an acoustic folk idiom known as la-la, dating back to the 1920s and unique to black Creoles originally from rural southwestern Louisiana. The modern form emerged in Southeast Texas in the late 1940s and 1950s among immigrants from this ethnic group, who came to cities such as Houston and Beaumont to find employment. There they fused old Louisiana French music traditions with urban blues and R&B to create a distinctive sound. C.J. describes his style of music as traditional zydeco and “the kind of music that has grandmas dancing with grandkids, and mamas and daddies and kids of all ages coming out and having fun.”
Cost is $30 for general admission and $27 for members. Tickets are available at the box office on the corner of Western and 111th, by calling 773-445-3838, or by visiting beverlyartcenter.org.
This article originally appeared in the Chicago Defender.