Regarding Dennis Stroughmatt, Dan Willging has a fine article about Dennis in the latest issue of Dirty Linen magazine. The only problem is that the Dennis Stroughmatt that I saw in Catonsville, Maryland a couple of weeks ago is not the same person that Dan wrote about in the article.
I have seen him play a number of times and have always been impressed with him, particularly when he played with Morris Ardoin and Dexter, he was a fine fiddle player.
At Catonsville, however, he had become some sort of hybrid musician with no sense of timing and backed by a mediocre band at best. Now Morris always says, "We don't play Zydeco music." Well, with Dennis seemed to have discovered his own brand of Zydeco music and forgotten Cajun and authentic Creole music. It seemed that something had happened to him, and it was not good!
The best conclusions that I could come up with are that you need both accordion and fiddle to play authentic Cajun and Creole music. When the same person tries to play both instruments, something is always missing. And when the rest of the band seems to have little idea about how either type of music is supposed to be played, the result is awful.