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Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

Amen! My take on music appreciation - if you want someone to take a closer look and appreciate Traditional Cajun or Creole music...you have to RESPECT their music as well!?
Music bashing creates more music bashing! My experience with playing with GREAT musicians is this - when you play with beginners they cut each other down and when you play for 6 years with a steel guitar genuis like Richard Comeaux you learn that they compliment and respect each others abilities and appreciate the fact that we all bring something different to the table!

Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

Wow....AMEN to you brother!
Sound like myself! I grew up with every style of music loaded in my music players and still to this day I have so many different styles of music from traditional to brand new material and I love and respect ALL of it!
Go David!ha

Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant


Thank you for responding to my email and I am glad that you accepted my apology for any hint of me attacking you personally. For the sake of others involved in this thread and the discussion board as a whole, here is my rambling attempt to clear things up.

I meant my first post and only other post on this subject to be my opinion of society trends and what is hot nowadays. It was not intended to be a direct assault on you (Travis), nor did I address to Travis, or did I ever think Travis would read it. If it sounded personal, I apologize. I'm sorry; that was never what I intended. What is personal to me is how I feel about the trend in many popular music styles to cater to the party crowd and the way it seems wilder and less left to the imagination than music of days gone by. And it seems like Travis' music joined the in the chorus of "booty songs" that have become so popular.

I respect Travis' musicianship and success and have no quarrel with that. I have never called any of his recordings "crap." I really do see how it is all trendy and catchy. That trait, in and of itself, it great and it is necessary for the music to sell. I like Barbecue and Drink a few...just don't like the trend of more and more "booty music" and I wonder if that subject is really necessary for his success. I wish you(Travis) could prove that it is not...my suggestion with original post was that the subject matter of "booty this" and "panty that" is what is creating some of the attention...but I know that he is a killer fiddle player and he has one of the most successful things in our regional music going right now...the biggest thing since Wayne Toups. He has developed a very catchy, trendy and marketable brand of music. I take nothing away from him on that.

Travis--I am not pretending that the two us us are competing. You are doing way more music than I am. I am not jealous. I was not trying to sound like I know more than you and/or that what I do musically is better or more valid. I never ever talked about my music as compared to yours; you made the comparison and called my music crap. I am a father of four children, a school teacher and a church choir director. We are coming at things from two completely different persepectives.

I personally don't like the subject matter or at least the titles of the songs. I have played the clubs and all that in the past...doing some Cajun, Rock and other styles and I know about that scene. I just don't care for it anymore. I guess I got too old.

As far as I know, Travis' music is no where near as XXX rated as those BooZoo songs Deacon Jones and Uncle Bud. So I don't think that he is the sole person who invented the subject matter. There is plenty of it in every style and in every time...even back in the middle ages and beyond probably. He is right. For his audience in the nightclubs it fits. The rap and hip-hop is dirtier than anything I ever heard of his. I just wish with all the success and power Travis has right now, that he use the opportunity to raise our culture up in a good light...that is all.

Travis--I am old-fashioned and sort of sheltered as you say. I don't think I am the only one...but, maybe I am. You are right about Elvis and all that...man, I laughed and laughed when I heard Vibrator...it's catchy and funny! I did not think it was such a nasty song...by just the title, however, it seems like it would be Xrated. And when I read the titles of, I guess your latest CD, it just seemed to be more of the trend. I have not heard the actual songs. I don't know what you sing in them. Maybe if I listened, I would laugh along just like I did for Vibrator. It just seems like you are playing to the racy side of things which makes perfect business sense. I just was wondering if it is crucial to you success or not. It was a society question--not a personal question
addressed to you.

It just seems like the values in the Cajun life that I like and the themes in some of the popular songs are diverging. I was hoping that somehow the lyrics didn't haveto go the route that Travis seems to be taking them...for the sake of the culture. Honestly, I really don't know that much of Travis' lyrics except Barbecue, Vibrator, and Booty Call...the lyrics might not be as racy as I think that it would be. Maybe it all fits in the modern world and I am the oddball--probably so...I've been seen as odd by others before.

Again, I meant my first post and only other post on this subject to be my opinion of society trends and what is hot nowadays and why I think (only my opinion of why) it might be hot. It seems like the Cajun/Creole culture is deeper than party/club music, but maybe the other party image is more attractive to the masses. Just some of my ponderings and not a personal attack.

Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

As I said in my email to you I surely accept the apology and anyone who knows me knows that I am very easy to get alone with and I guess I take these songs with a grain of salt and myself and my friends and band included are always joking and cutting up and not everyone's sense of humor is equal and most of our songs are done as either what we consider comical and some songs are serious songs that our audience relates to.
If you play Folk festivals then you need to play Folk Music but if you play Night Clubs in Lafayette, La. then you need to play music that your audience relates to and will like and enjoy? So, with this band and the direction it is heading isn't taking the Folk or Roots direction then we realize it upsets the people who once enjoyed hearing Folk recordings and I still write Cajun songs at home but it is hard to invest a lot of money into these recording when there is not a lot of support for it and I think it loses it's support from people re-recording the same songs over and over again and burning out the local audience that wants to see and hear something NEW that still has the flavor they know and recognize?
You can't do a record and wonder what people 50 years ago would think about it....you have to record what the people are wanting in 2007 and the only way to determine what the audience wants is to see what they buy and who they come out and see and I've played traditional music for years and never saw any kind of impact as I do now!?
I get emails daily from people in Iraq and soldiers saying daily how they listen to our music every day because it s what THEY consider THEIR music and reminds them of home....THAT means something to me and that means a lot to the interest in our ocal music whether or not people like or dislike what we do as a group.
No matter what we sing about or how we play I think ALL music disserves respect and even hip-hop singing about touchy subjects with guns etc. - they are writing about what they see in the streets and their audience likes it just as people loved there old John Wayne movies with guns? Another subject but music and movies are all entertainment but you can't get upset with Stephen King for doing a movie that isn't family oriented as Lassie? Every type of music and movies etc. have different audiences and all bring something different to the table and all disserve respect just as an artist that paints pictures?
I understand the passion behind the traditional music and as I've said I love it myself and enjoy playing it but also enjoy doing what I am doing now.
I'll just end with apology accepted and thanks for emailing me about it as well!

Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

Oh and by the way I never apologized to Chris since he was man enough to do so with me - so, as I accept your apology I offer mine as well.

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

Thank you, Travis, "it's all cool" Apology accepted...you are a true gentleman...sorry, didn't mean to start a firestorm.

Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

Wow... I love this forum! Nice to see ya here Travis! You know I'm one of your most fervent supporters.

As I've told you many times, I'll tell the rest of the Braves here; had you not asked me to come up to the stage to pull a tune with you, I'd still be complacent with the few simple riffs I knew. That was over 2 years ago in Rayne.

Because I met you and felt the warmth of your generosity as well as the talent of your band behind me, I delved deeply into rediscovering myself with accordion in hand. You inspired me to take time out to break down the essentials that I needed to know to become a better accordionist and songwriter. YOU inspired me to purchase dozens of CDs by both classic and contemporary Cajun artists such as Iry, Aldus, Ray & Nathan Abshire, and Wilson Savoy. It was my desire to acquire a fraction of what you know and HERE IT IS folks, case in point, because of you and your "non-traditional" music, I dug deep into traditional Cajun music.

What I can tell you is, since that night in Rayne, I've become the accordion player I've always hoped to be and the good news is, I'm not finished yet! There's much, much more to learn but because of your friendship, the friendhip of your bandmates and family, you've inspired me to start a new band -- now over a year old and doing well -- and have provided me a template of how a band sounds, operates and interacts with its public.

I couldn't have accomplished this with any other highly visible Louisiana band leader. I've tried. I've extended my hand to several over the years -- you're the only one who has truly shook it and has welcomed me into recognizing me as human and as a legitimate artist in the scope of C&Z music. Honors however to Toups and Ray Abshire for giving me the time of day and I do appreciate their sincerity as well. Oh, and more recently to Sarah! I do admire her talents, her family and her time to interface with me in this forum. I'd love to have a beer with her -- and will one of these days. ;)

But what I'm saying is this; Travis and those immediately associated with him have done the most for me in giving me hope for my musical future.

I'm not sure what else I can elaborate on that I've not already said about the Zydeco Kingpins. So here's my complete and final review:

Travis Matte is a bona fide revolutionary. The time is right for he and his band, The Zydeco Kingpins to pioneer the distinctive mixture of zydeco, Cajun, swamp pop, modern rock and hip-hop deep into new territory. Few Louisiana artists are visualizing the shortage of such an existing blend and the growing appetite this fresh market is propagating -- equipped with a sound that is uniquely Louisiana, yet sophisticated enough to be adopted beyond the Gulf Coast.

Travis and his band have positioned themselves in the upper echelon of hip-ness; while attempting to label their brand of music is about as easy as shooting flies with a nail gun. Travis expresses this innovative trademark by weaving through references of Cajun and zydeco grooves under the delightful influence of pop and funk -- then elevating them through a vogue, street-smart distiller. The result makes him one of the most best-selling acts to hit the local Louisiana scene in years, breaking attendance records at local venues and festivals, while garnering a huge, new fan-base.

It's comforting to note that the elements that market Travis' contemporary stylings, also allow ample room for one of Louisiana's greatests gifts to the world -- good humor and joie de vie. Without this charitable blend, Travis' music might prove too prudent for today's society. But Travis and his Zydeco Kingpins get it right while pairing infectious accordion hooks and lilting melodies spiced with hip-hop and humor with just the perfect amount salt and sweet to make his audience keep coming back for more.

R!CK aka

KNON 89.3 FM, Dallas TX

Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

Well, Rick, thanks for calling it "non-traditional" (you KNOW my ears ******* up at that one! ), and I'm glad to hear that Travis' awful (Travis-- ) music got you interested in the good stuff.

We'll all go out and have a beer (or twelve) one day and fight it out.

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

You see Sarah I am the Horse leading them to your water!ha
Sarah once you drink enough Russian Vodka's you will dig the Kigpins baby!lol

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

You got it Sarah! I'm just thrilled we are all passionate to care about music. In that sense we are united under one common bond... and a dozen other bubbly, ice-cold reasons! 'Preciate'cha!


Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

All I can say is Rick you duh man!ha
Rick has been over to my home and he and his wife to be are super awesome people and I have never seen anyone in my life so appreciative!
I must admit all of your words makes everything we do and all of the hard work and late night weekends and time in studio away from family feel like it is all worth something! Actually, I will be in the studio all of this week and playing all weekend and work during the week makes being a musician a tough life when it comes to TIME but I love doing it so I am not complaining!ha
Again brother, Thx and you are welcomed anytime you need from me my friend!

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

haha, another tracas resolved!

Excellent Discussion

This is fascinating, thanks, everyone.

I'm involved in a music cooperative here in Michigan that's dedicated to the preservation and presentation of "traditional" music. The organization started 33 years ago focused on bluegrass, but now covers many more genres, including Cajun and Zydeco. We have many discussions and debates over what is "traditional" (and "according to whom"). Perhaps more importantly, if the organization is going to be around another 50 years (which we all hope it will) how do we inspire and involve younger people to take up our mission of preserving and presenting traditional arts?

Seems to me all music is ultimately a branch of the same tree, if one looks to the roots. Some styles I enjoy much more than others, and to each their own in that regard. I have visited SW Louisiana many times, and I've found most Cajun musicians to be very generous and open. Some have helped me greatly in learning about the culture and playing the music. The time I've spent with friends in Lafayette and therabouts shows me you folks have a special cultural treasure that should be preserved.

For the roots to survive, though, the branches must continue to grow.

All the best.

Re: Excellent Discussion

Wait a second:

"...try to get past the thonged women". I've been goin' to the wrong shows, man.

Travis, now I gotta see y'all play live! Seriously, though. I understand that juggling a day job and music is a real headache. If you don't have the day job, though, it's tough to make the record you want.

Wouldn't you go crazy if you didn't play live on the weekends?


Nick B.

Re: Re: Excellent Discussion

Ha, yeah do that - come see us when you can brother!
I am usually lost when I don't play music!ha
take care

Re: Excellent Discussion

Thx Tee! I will use your quote "For the roots to survive the branches have to grow"! Well worded and I can see the other side as well since I also love and enjoy the roots music, but it seems as though music evolves like everything else in life whether people want it to or not?
Even though our style is not that of Traditional Cajun or Creole/Zydeco we still do some traditional tunes of both styles at our shows to show the audiences that would have never heard the music how it sounds and give them a taste of the older styles that they see incorporated in our style of music.
Basically tradition is a activity or belief that existed for an extended period of time....so, with so many different styles of music coming from our area with so many unique bands that were all great and didn't sound alike...WHO, is the traditional police force in deciding what makes the grade and is considered traditional? It is all in the ear of the beholder and no two people agree the same way and similar to religion and with many religious discussions you have to agree to disagree.
Good points!

Re: Re: Excellent Discussion

I can't believe I read all of the emails regarding Travis Matte and the Kingpins.Whew!!! It made me realize just how well people can express their thoughts through what they type (I wish I could say the same for me). I am so happy that all parties responding seem to have agreed that all music has merit to somebody. Great, that has been settled. I loved hearing from Sarah. David Bertrand, I agree totally with. Travis, you present yourself so well. How can people not see how sincere you are? We'll they can't not see it, because you are sincere and thanks for being that way.
Music for me is second to only my wife and kids. It's the only work (and most of the fun)I've done all my life. Although I often feel inadequate due to the fact that I do not play an instrument. Anytime I am around people who play so well (and enjoy playing it), I am totally amazed.
I listen mostly to Cajun and Zydeco music. That doesn't mean I like it all. In fact most I don't care for (and most of the writers on this forum probably feel the same).
I can just tell you from my end, what the Kingpins are doing is terrific. They are getting young people involved in some type of South Louisiana music. Beats all the other stuff in the young people clubs (in my opinion of course). They are sleeing out shows and selling cds (which is almost impossible to do these days). Somebody must be likin' it.
I am very anxious to hear what the new cd will sound like. I might hate it. It might flop out or break the Kingpins out nationally. No one knows. But you gotta give it a shot if you are in a postion to do so.
We are so fortunate to have the opportunity to hear and see Travis Matte & the Pins, Pine Leaf Boys, Red Sticks, Mamou Playboys, Geno and to witness and be a part of the enthusiasm that the fans of these bands
have...Count me in that group.
Keep showing your support for the music you love.
...Todd Ortego

Re: Travis Matte & Robert Plant

You folks haven't got anything special, we are having the same discussions in the bluegrass world. Its amazing to me that what folks consider traditional was comtemporary in the past. Music is ever evolving in all genres and its hard to stay focused on what is the parameters of a certain type. I've mixed BeeBop and Ragtime into my bluegrass runs on the banjo and the (so called Traditionalist) give me dirty looks (mostly other banjo players)because that ain't the way Earl Scruggs did it. But hey as someone said everyone brings something to the table and fits it in somehow. Even though I wouldn't go out and buy a hip hop cut, or a Cajun/Creole/Zydeco version of hip hop or R&B I do have the choice of what I want to listen to. I wouldn't want my kids listening to such lyrics, but then again I think everyone is a product of their raising. I play alot of not traditional bluegrass type music and I understand that every musician is an artist and will bring their own special touch to a music genre. Bruce

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