Dwayne Dopsie and the Hellraisers: Bringing the Bayou to Little Egypt

Dwayne Dopsie and the Hellraisers: Bringing the Bayou to Little Egypt
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Dwayne Dopsie and the Zydeco Hellraisers Set Fiyo to the Bayou


Who: Dwayne Dopsie and the Zydeco Hellraisers
What: zydeco
Where:
When: 2016-07-30
Louisiana accordion master Dwayne “Dopsie” Rubin and his Zydeco Hellraisers return Saturday, July 30
Thomas Henry Horan
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Louisiana accordion master Dwayne “Dopsie” Rubin and his Zydeco Hellraisers return Saturday, July 30 to Southern Illinois to spice up Walker’s Bluff.

Accordionist, lead singer, and principal songwriter Dwayne Dopsie comes from an impeccable musical pedigree. His father, the self-taught Alton “Rockin’ Dopsie” Rubin, was famous for his unique accordion style, which included playing the accordion upside down. Dwayne took over as leader of Alton’s band when Alton died in 1993, continuing a family musical tradition that is now entering its eighth decade.

Dwayne and the Hellraisers (washboard player Paul Lafleur, bass player Dion Pierre, saxophonist Tim McFatter, guitarist Brandon David, and drummer Percy Walker) all grew up in and around Lafayette, Louisiana, the Cajun-music capital of the world. The youngest of eight children, Dwayne first learned to play the rub board. He once dreamed of joining the NBA’s Chicago Bulls, but was soon drawn irresistibly to his dad’s accordion. By his late teens, he led his own band, the Hellraisers, dedicated to bringing the fire and zap of zydeco to a younger generation of fans. They have found radio and record-store success with several live and studio albums, and their next project will be a tribute album of Alton Dopsie’s greatest hits.

Find out more at <http://www.DwayneDopsie.com>.

As these salty snap beans prepared to tear up Southern Illinois with their snappy rubboarding and high-energy, spicy-two stepping, Nightlife was able to catch a little bit of Dopsie’s zydeco lightning in an email bottle:

Have you ever performed in Southern Illinois before?

Yes, we have played in Carbondale in 2013, and in Springfield, and we always have an awesome time.

Do you ever play the accordion upside-down, like your father did?

No, I haven’t. I’ve tried, because I’m left handed, but I play with my right hand instead.

You have toured Europe several times. Do you ever encounter local musicians who play the traditional music styles that were blended together in America to become zydeco?

No, I haven’t come across them, but zydeco music is pure Louisiana music— it’s not something anyone can play. I mean, they can, but it won’t sound right. Zydeco is based on Creole music and struggles in years past, and that’s where the blues influence comes from in the music!

Have you ever performed or jammed with other Louisiana music greats, like Dewey Balfa or Zachary Richard or the Chenier family?

No, I haven’t. I’ve played many festivals where C.J. Chenier [was] playing, but we never played together. But we always run into each other, because we both travel!

Anything else you’d like to add?

One thing to add is that zydeco music is happy, fun, and it’s a style of music for everyone!

who: Dwayne Dopsie and the Zydeco Hellraisers

what: zydeco

where: Walker’s Bluff

 

when: Saturday, July 30