Street Music on Paris resumes this month, the 5th of the series, fueled by popular demand, as always. At 6pm on the 15th, "The Hottest Accordion in America" as per the American Accordionists Association will take the stage.
Here's what Dwayne Dopsie had to say in an interview at accordions.com when he received his 'hottest' ranking:
"I play about 70% of my own arrangements, and I use a lot of my fathers material too. I don't play key for key, the same each time, but it always is within the same style. I play strictly Zydeco music of which 95% is my own music and about 5 percent traditional Zydeco. Within the Zydeco style theme I can also play blues, boogie, 2 step and waltzes. I have three accordions at the moment, and number four is on the way. The tuning on all of them is "G-C-F." This is normal for zydeco music. Most of the others, play much smaller accordions though. My accordion is made in Italy, and is a little unique for Zydeco accordionists, in that the right hand is diatonic (same key produces a different note depending on the direction of the bellows) and the left hand is not, meaning it has the standard bass configuration of a traditional accordion.
“The only hero for me musically, is my Dad. From the moment I heard him, till this day, I have been influenced by his music. I feel my Dad played the traditional Zydeco music, which is the style I prefer. The artists that play Cajun music today have stayed within the limits of what I consider to be Cajun style, however, I think the Zydeco players have gone overboard to a more 90's or even Hip-Hop style. I feel Zydeco is more 'blues', so I don't really have anyone to look up to, that plays within the limits of the Zydeco style. My Dad was the greatest, and everything I do points towards his influence.
“Zydeco means ‘Snap Bean.’ (In French, ‘Les Haricots,’ means green beans, and when pronounced in French Creole, the "s" is pronounced like a ‘z,’ it misses the silent ‘H’ then is joined to the ‘a,’ rolled 'r' and finishes with a silent ‘t’ so ‘Les Haricots’ sounded like ‘Lez-arico’ or with the French Creole accent, ‘Zydeco.’)
“Around the turn of the century while the farmers were out working in the fields, (picking the beans) they would hum melodies to help pass the time. The workers would come in from the fields, and while cooking, would wonder about the salt content of the beans. It is said that the favorite melody was called ‘Les Haricots Sont Pas Sales’ which translates as ‘The snap beans are not salty.’ This 'blues' melody, was the beginning of the Zydeco music.
“My band started January 26th, 1999. For the name I took "Dopsie" from my fathers stage name, and the ‘Hellraisers’ from my wife, who said, with our music, we were going to be out raising hell! I sing and dance during my show. It is very high energy, however it is something you really can't describe, you must see it for yourself!"
August 15th, 6pm: Dwayne Dopsie & The Zydeco Hellraisers
Dwayne Dopsie Rubin grew up in Louisiana and is the son of the “King of Zydeco” Alton Rubin Sr. (aka Rockin’ Dopsie.) At the age of four, he played the washboard and, soon after, the accordion to follow in his father’s footsteps. After traveling the zydeco circuit with his family, including appearances on The Dolly Parton Show and Super Bowl 24, Dwayne started his own band and has continued in the family tradition of entertaining: CBS This Morning, The Travel Channel, Discovery, 20/20, Good Morning America and The Fox Television Network, a feature in Rolling Stones Magazine, and the New Orleans Jazz Festival.
August 29th, 6pm: true indie with the Modern Society
Formed three years ago over shared musical passions, The Modern Society came together like a big bang of the right place and the right time. After recording five demos and sharing them online to a good response, the band booked their first show with no expectations only to have 400 kids show up. By their third show The Modern Society was nominated for several Atlanta Music Guide awards and shortly thereafter entered the studio to record their debut, The Beat Goes On.
September 5, 6pm: old-time string music with The Phantom Sheiks
In the fall of 2007 the Phantom Sheiks were officially born. Davis Inman and Kirk McAlpin have shared a tune or two over the last 15 years, but it was not until they went to the hills of North Carolina that they began to synthesize their love of classic radio tunes with their wide-ranging skills on the stringed instruments that they heard on early recordings from the deep south. Although temporarily separated by a state, they will set your foot to tappin’ if you are lucky enough to catch them at a party or festival. Armed with guitar, fiddle, mandolin and dobro, these Georgia boys will spin you an original yarn while delighting you with the twang of the great old-time string bands.
September 19, 6pm: an icon of original American music: Bill Kirchen & Too Much Fun
"Bill Kirchen rules. It's just that simple. His no-nonsense diesel guitar attack, powered by great booming, bottom-heavy licks still covered with axle grease, is undoubtedly the real thing, scattering scorching guitar runs in all directions, it's all immediate, in your face and more than a little dangerous.” — Austin American-Statesman.
Bill Kirchen is widely known for the trademark big-rig guitar riffs that powered the Commander Cody hit “Hot Rod Lincoln” into the Top 10 in 1972. Since 1993, he has recorded seven critically acclaimed albums of his own that have made him one of the musical elder statesmen of today’s Americana music, He received a Grammy nomination for Best Country Instrumental Performance 2001, and is considered a Titan of the Telecaster guitar by Guitar Player magazine. His new album is Hammer of the Honky-Tonk Gods from Proper Records.
Street Music on Paris Avenue is produced by the Arts Council of Beaufort County, 843-379-2787 & beaufortcountyarts.com , and presented by the Town of Port Royal. Bring your chairs and dancing shoes!