Local Music Vibe

Local Music Vibe


11/27: Tom Rigney & Flambeau with special guest Michael Doucet (BeauSoleil)

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11/27: Tom Rigney & Flambeau with special guest Michael Doucet (BeauSoleil)
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Ashkenaz Music and Dance Cafe

1317 San Pablo Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94702
(510) 525-5054
About this show

Tickets $12 advance / $15 day of show / $12 students - www.ashkenaz112712-efbevent.eventbrite.com
Includes Cajun/Zydeco dance lesson with Cheryl McBride at 8 pm.
Ashkenaz is always all ages! www.ashkenaz.com

Ashkenaz hosts the first official pairing of Louisiana Cajun fiddle king Michael Doucet and local champ Tom Rigney in a night of fabulous fiddle duets backed by Rigney’s band Flambeau. In addition to Cajun and zydeco favorites, they will cover blues, two-steps, and waltzes. According to Rigney, “The repertoire will most likely be drawn from the Flambeau book, but the tunes, original or traditional, that we think are well-suited to two fiddles. We may even play a tune or two of Michael’s. We have buckets of material to choose from.”

While Rigney and Doucet’s onstage duets have been few and never planned, their association and mutual admiration goes back nearly 30 years. They met at a Rhode Island music festival in 1983, when Rigney was playing in Queen Ida’s band and Doucet was leading his young band BeauSoleil. Rigney explains, “In recent years we seem to have been crossing paths a bit more frequently and have taken the opportunity to get to know each other better and finally to play some music together.”

Both Rigney and Doucet have long led groups that are among the most popular attractions at Ashkenaz. Rigney went from Queen Ida to his New Orleans-drenched rock-R&B-zydeco outfit the Sundogs, and during this century he has led his Flambeau ensemble, recording band and solo records mixing traditional and original fare. What sets them apart is Rigney’s fresh musical takes on Cajun and zydeco, and other styles he loves to play from rock to classical, creating a celebration of life through dance rhythms. Flambeau is a tight ensemble of virtuoso musicians, with guitarist Danny Caron (Charles Brown’s bandleader; he and Rigney met when both backed up Rockin’ Sidney in the ’80s), boogie-woogie keyboardist Caroline Dahl, bassist and singer Steve Parks, and drummer Brent Rampone.

Louisiana native Michael Doucet is the world’s best-known Cajun fiddler and leads the globetrotting band BeauSoleil, featured in documentary films and movies such as “Belizaire the Cajun” and “The Big Easy.” His recordings on El Cerrito’s Arhoolie Records (in both BeauSoleil and the Savoy-Doucet Cajun Band, both Ashkenaz favorites) helped spread Cajun and zydeco music beyond Louisiana in the early ’80s.Doucet is one of the most frequent guests on “A Prairie Home Companion” and has racked up two Grammy awards and a dozen nominations, along with recordings and performances with everyone from the Grateful Dead, Richard Thompson, and Keith Richards to Mary-Chapin Carpenter’s pop hit “Down at the Twist and Shout.”