C.C. Adcock - Lafayette Marquis
Yeproc Records (www.yeproc.com)
"Oh, yeah, it's a runaway life," wails Charles "C.C." Adcock from the stage of Tipitina's Uptown one rainy New Orleans night at the start of Jazz Fest 2006. Adcock's battered acoustic guitar, his worn straw hat, his Elvis t-shirt and the laughing Cajun fiddler laboring beside him at a single microphone all suggest the man knows his roots. And this song, which started out as a Creole narrative told in the voice of a hallucinating, doomed escaped slave, takes on the feel of an anthem, with the audience singing along rowdily. "Runaway Life," the only acoustic number on a very electric CD, has become the hands-down hit from Adcock's latest, Lafayette Marquis.
When Katrina blitzed New Orleans last year, those who could fled to wherever they could. Some 50,000 Crescent City folks made it to Acadiana, the area around Lafayette, where C. C. Adcock lives, some 130 miles west of New Orleans. "Yeah, we had some interesting people stop and stay with us for a while," allows Adcock, noting that among them was one Ani DiFranco, who "played the best guitar I've heard any woman play, ever!" Adcock's hospitality became legendary, as The Iguanas and other bands and individual musicians found refuge with him and his neighbors in Acadiana. And in the months since, Adcock and his two bands, Lafayette Marquis and Lil Band of Gold (which also features Cajun accordion star Steve Reilly) joined other local musicians in some of the many benefits in support of relief to hurricane victims.
Lafayette Marquis has become an essential part of the background music to the effort, heard in cars and on sound systems throughout Louisiana. It really should be heard much further afield, as this is one of the swampiest, bluesiest, most downright fun rock n' roll records in many years. Featuring production work by both Adcock and the late, great Jack Nitszche (of Rolling Stones fame), this album's blurred electric guitars, weird effects, witty lyrics and slurred Deep South vocals give it the feeling of a steaming summer bayou night. - Bill Nevins
CD available from cdRoots
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