Link to Local Bands
Set the Playboys Free!
Help the Playboys record their next album with fan funding...
The Mamou Playboys have at long last decided to venture out on our own in the realm of recording. Like many musicians have in recent years, we are stepping away from the traditional music industry pattern. Instead of borrowing a large chunk of very expensive money from a record company, we are going to produce and finance our next record, and we'd like to offer you the chance to be a part of it.

If you pre-order your Mamou Playboys album you will be among the first to have an advance copy, as well as having the satisfaction of helping us defray the costs of studio time, mixing, mastering, and package design of the Mamou Playboys' twelfth recording. We have set up a Paypal account exclusively for this album, in order for your name and address to be carefully guarded and used to send your record just as soon as it's finished, sometime this summer, and months before it will be released to record stores.

Thanks to the democratic nature of the internet, fan funding is the wave of the future in music. It won't cost you anything extra, just paying in advance for the recording you'll receive in the mail as soon as it's ready.

This will be an entirely new studio album, with a mixture of traditional and original tunes, similar in nature to our Grammy nominated Bon rêve or Dominos, but better than ever, of course, because we're better than ever. We have been performing quite a bit of this material onstage already, and we've been getting a great response for hot two steps like Steve's "Danser sans comprendre," and gorgeous waltzes with three-part harmony, like Sam's "Personne pour me recevoir."

Pre-order your advance copy of our next album, and help us make it the best ever.

To preorder click here…

Posted By clark on 2009-02-10 21:14:46

ACCORDION DREAMS: A Journey into Cajun and Creole Music
New Music Memoir by Bay Area Accordionist Blair Kilpatrick
Accordion Dreams: A Journey into Cajun and Creole Music
By Blair Kilpatrick
University Press of Mississippi
ISBN 978-1-60473-101-9, hardback 

Cajun accordion becomes a life-changing obsession for Bay Area psychotherapist

Blair Kilpatrick had settled into her life as a psychologist, wife, and mother when a chance encounter in New Orleans turned her world upside down. She returned home to Chicago with an unlikely new passion: Cajun music. Accordion Dreams: A Journey into Cajun and Creole Music (University Press of Mississippi) is an engaging and uplifting account of Kilpatrick’s foray into a new culture.


Haunted by recurring dreams of playing the Cajun accordion, she set out to master the    instrument—even though she was not a musician, was too self-conscious to dance, and didn’t even sing in the shower. Kilpatrick describes her vivid dreams, recalling, “I played the accordion—completely at one with the instrument, the music gliding out of me with no effort at all. I’d wake up enchanted—and surprised—since it had never occurred to me that I could try to create this music myself.”


Kilpatrick’s obsession took her from the local Cajun dance scene to folk music camp in West Virginia, back and forth to south Louisiana, and even to a Cajun festival in France. As she followed her musical journey, the boundaries of her world expanded, and she was enlivened by the vibrant Louisiana French culture and the people, both Cajun and Creole, she came to know.


Kilpatrick and her family moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, home to the largest Louisiana French music scene outside the Gulf Coast. There she became a protégé of renowned accordionist Danny Poullard, a Louisiana-born Creole and the guiding spirit of the local music community. Kilpatrick slowly blossomed under his guidance and—with his encouragement—formed a band of her own. But she soon faced a new and painful challenge: the possible loss of her friend and mentor, when Poullard’s health began to fail.


Accordion Dreams offers readers a deeply personal look into Kilpatrick’s passion, risk-taking, and life-changing music obsession.


Blair Kilpatrick has an independent practice in psychotherapy in the San Francisco Bay Area. She also performs and records with Sauce Piquante, a traditional Cajun-Creole band she founded in the late 1990s. For updates, news and reviews visit


Posted By blairkilpatrick on 2009-02-05 09:24:08

Cajun and Zydeco Dance Music in Northern California
Modern Pleasures in a Postmodern World, a new book by Mark Dewitt

From the Bayou to the Bay: Cajun and Zydeco music thrives outside of Louisiana

Queen Ida. Danny Poullard. Documentary filmmaker Les Blank. Chris Strachwitz and Arhoolie Records. These are names that are familiar to many fans of Cajun music and zydeco, and they have one other thing in common: all longtime residence in the San Francisco Bay Area. They are all part of a vibrant scene of dancing and live Louisiana French music that has been going on for decades.

Cajun and Zydeco Dance Music in Northern California: Modern Pleasures in a Postmodern World (University Press of Mississippi) traces how this region of California has been able to develop and sustain more than a dozen bands and several dances a week. Ethnographic description of this active regional scene opens into a discussion of several historical trends that have affected life and music in Louisiana and the nation. The book portrays the diversity of people who have come together to adopt Cajun and Creole dance music as a way to cope with a globalized, media-saturated world.

Celebrating life on the dance floor to the accompaniment of an accordion, fiddle, and a rubboard is one way to cope with a world that has come to be shared by Creoles, Cajuns, folk revivalists, and others who have been drawn in by the vibrant dance music.

Ethnomusicologist Mark F. DeWitt innovatively weaves together interviews with musicians and dancers (some from Louisiana, some not), analysis of popular media, participant observation as a musician and dancer, and historical perspectives from wartime black migration patterns, the civil rights movement, American folk and blues revivals, California counterculture, and the rise of cultural tourism in “Cajun Country.”

Cajun and Zydeco Dance Music in Northern California reveals the multifaceted appeal of celebrating life on the dance floor, Louisiana-French style.

MARK F. DEWITT is an independent scholar living in Oakland, California. He has published articles in the world of music and Popular Music and Society.

Cajun and Zydeco Dance Music in Northern California
Modern Pleasures in a Postmodern World
By Mark F. DeWitt
University Press of Mississippi
ISBN 978-1-60473-090-6, hardback, $50

Posted By clark on 2008-10-22 16:03:04

Support the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act
There's finally a bill in Congress that will give Katrina survivors a fair chance to rebuild their lives...

Three years after Hurricane Katrina, there's finally a bill in Congress that will give Katrina survivors a fair chance to rebuild their lives. But it won't become law if enough representatives don't stand up to support it.

The Gulf Coast Civic Works Act would hire 100,000 Gulf Coast residents and evacuees, providing them with training and jobs to rebuild their homes and communities. It started as nothing more than a good idea, but after thousands of members called on Congress to support the plan, and after years of persistent activism from students and Gulf Coast organizations, it now has a real chance of bringing some justice to the Gulf.

Even though it's come this far, it will take massive public pressure on each member of Congress to get the bill passed. If we want justice for Katrina survivors, we need to make our voices heard now as the media focuses its attention on the third anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

I've signed on with to tell my member of Congress to co-sponsor the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act, will you join us?

The Gulf Coast Civic Works Act represents a powerful shift from what's currently happening in the Gulf. It calls for hiring 100,000 Gulf Coast residents to rebuild New Orleans and the surrounding region. They'll be provided with temporary housing and job-training and will build and repair houses, schools, parks, and other civic buildings.

The idea behind the Gulf Coast Civic Works Project is not new. During the Great Depression, the federal government believed it had a responsibility to ensure that those hit hardest did not fall through the cracks. It also knew that those Americans wanted a hand up, not a handout. So, in 1935, Congress created a program to hire out-of-work Americans to get things done to benefit their communities.

It's a plan that makes sense--for displaced survivors, for the communities of the Gulf Coast, for the nation as a whole. It provides an opportunity to invest in Americans while reversing the most glaring problems that plague current rebuilding plans: gentrification, government waste, and massive corporate profiteering. It would revitalize the Gulf Coast's economy while rebuilding its infrastructure, and it's a model that could be applied to solve similar problems across the country.

Learn more and please join us by calling on your representative to co-sponsor the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act. It only takes a minute:


The Color of Change

Posted By clark on 2008-08-20 16:28:01

Support the Rebuilding of the Gulf Coast
Watch the video and sign on to the petition!!!!


On The Eve of the Second Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Brave New Foundation Launches New Online Campaign Supporting Gulf Coast Recovery

LOS ANGELES- On the eve of the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Director Robert Greenwald and Brave New Foundation join together with a coalition of social justice groups from across the country to launch When The Saints Go Marching In. The three minute YouTube video reveals the devastating reality of hurricane survivors still struggling to rebuild their lives and the amazing hope they maintain about the future.

When The Saints Go Marching In launched today and can be seen at The video is spreading rapidly across the internet with the help of partner groups like Plenty,, and Think New Orleans. When The Saints Go Marching In includes footage of NOLA residents working to make the city home again, and ends with a call to action for viewers to urge the Senate to pass Senator Chris Dodd's (D-CT) Gulf Coast Recovery Bill (S. 1668).

Many residents have not received the support they need to rebuild their lives two years after the hurricane. "The Feds, the State, and the locals, I mean everybody has just turned their backs on us and just left us to fend for ourselves" says NOLA resident Rudy Aguilar in the video.

"Two years is far too long, the people of New Orleans deserve better" said the video’s director Robert Greenwald. "We hope this campaign will help activate people around the country to work for change."

Additional partners on When The Saints Go Marching In include the Center for Social, Inclusion, Fair Housing Action Center, Advancement Project, Kirwan Institute for Study of Race and Ethnicity, Ella Baker Center, The Methodist Federation for Social Action, Moving Forward Gulf Coast, Oxfam America, National Alliance to Restore Opportunity to the Gulf Coast, Mississippi ACLU and the Institute on Race and Poverty.

Founded by Robert Greenwald, the award winning producer of over 60 films, Brave New Foundation is a unique organization taking the power of media to a new level by making documentaries that address the most vital issues of our day, building the capacity to organize around them, and including public participation in the process. BNF is working to democratize the media by empowering people to request and receive responsive, responsible and representative media and leadership. Online at

Here is a detailed PDF graphic of recovery progress from the Times Picayune

Posted By clark on 2007-08-30 21:53:45

Venue Wanted!!!
We are ALWAYS looking for a hall to have some dances with local bands

VENUE, VENUE, VENUE: A growing number of people have been searching the local area for a venue for our local and out of town bands. 


Think once-a-month dance of about 100 people. We could try a place on for size, and see what happens. There have been close to 20 venues checked out, but nothing seems to fill the bill.


This is what we need: * good dance floor * room for pot luck items * safe parking - and plenty of it * OK for beer/wine on premise * reasonable hourly rate ($30 or thereabouts) All ideas entertained.


Use the Contact link on upper right corner. Thanks!

Posted By clark on 2007-08-05 19:30:13

Cajun & Zydeco online Community
Feels so Good
Hey, I just got the email about the Cajun & Zydeco online community.
Thanks to those making this happen!
Posted By letaroberts on 2007-03-04 22:15:47

Will Play For Cheese...
A Visit to the SF Bay Area from June 2006 by Andrea Rubenstein

I visited the Bay Area for the first time in over 18 months in mid-May. Also in town were some friends from Lafayette, LA. We brought our instruments to play Cajun music for family and friends and took to calling ourselves the “Will Play For….“ band… as in: will play for goat cheese (yum), lodging, wine, supper, free. It was great fun, and we all got a kick out of the reaction we got from folks who’d never heard us play music before.

It was a great week to be in town. Although rain washed out the CFLFM jam in San Jose, which I was looking forward to, after that it was smooth sailing weather-wise. I still got to visit with a lot of friends: jammed at Blair & Steve’s in Berkeley, visited Agi Ban in Oakland, had wonderful dinners with Karen Thompson & Susan Mahoney up in Novato, toured “Lucasland” (and hugged Yoda) in the Presidio (THANKS MarK!), got to both the new De Young Museum and the SFMOMA, ate a LOT of sushi and salads.

I also got to see Geno Delafose & French Rockin’ Boogie at Eagle’s Hall, who were in fine form. There was a huge crowd there that evening (no surprise), including many friends I hadn’t seen for a long time, plus folks I’d just seen in Louisiana during the annual April Balfa Camp/Festival International/Jazz Fest/ Breaux Bridge Festival marathon.

It was odd to be a tourist in the place I still think of as home. When folks visit SW Louisiana, I see them immersed in that frenzy of trying to pack in as many music and dance events as possible during their short visits. Well, the tables were turned as I traipsed up and down the Pennisula, East Bay, San Francisco and Marin trying to visit friends and see the places I’d been missing.

After about 4 years in Lafayette, I almost forgot how much of my time in the Bay Area was spent in cars and stuck in traffic. In Lafayette, most things I want to do are less than 15 minutes away. The trade-off of course are 6 months of brutal Louisiana summers [aka hurricane season]. I’d swap the 3.4 quake that occurred while I was in the Bay Area for the next Tropical Storm or Category 1 Hurricane any time you want. Still, I was happy to get back. In less than a week, I’ve been to 2 parties/jams, tonight Bonsoir Catin plays for free at Downtown Alive, followed by a benefit at the Blue Moon for the French Immersion school programs (with Bonsoir Catin, Pine Leaf Boys and Feu Follet) or Curley Taylor at 307.

Tomorrow, some of the choices include The Cajun Heartland State Fair in Lafayette (Geno & Lil Nathan, not to mention the Pig Races), the Spice & Music Festival in Opelousas (Step Rideau, Keith Frank) or the Daylily Festival in Abbeville, plus the normal events: zydeco breakfast in Breaux Bridge, Cajun jams at the Savoy Music Center AND Louisiana Heritage & Gifts, the Liberty Theater. Sunday morning the Mello Joy Boys (a spin off of the Lost Bayou Ramblers) play at (where else) the Mello Joy Cafe. Sunday afternoon if you time it right, you can catch Terry & the Bad Boys at Vermillionville and Geno at Whiskey River, and then finish up with dinner shows featuring the Basin Brothers at Mulates or Corey “Lil Pop” Ledet at Randol’s and that’s just a partial list…

Welcome to my world!

Posted By andrearubinstein on 2007-02-10 17:11:44

Set the Playboys Free!
   Posted by clark
ACCORDION DREAMS: A Journey into Cajun and Creole Music
   Posted by blairkilpatrick
Cajun and Zydeco Dance Music in Northern California
   Posted by clark
Support the Gulf Coast Civic Works Act
   Posted by clark
Support the Rebuilding of the Gulf Coast
   Posted by clark
Venue Wanted!!!
   Posted by clark
Cajun & Zydeco online Community
   Posted by letaroberts
Will Play For Cheese...
   Posted by andrearubinstein
California Friends | Bay Area Cajun Zydeco Dance Events | Cajun Dance Pictures | Articles | Bay Area Cajun Zydeco Dance Lessons | Join California Friends
Page Views: 12208

California Friends is a San Francisco Bay Area group that promotes Cajun, Creole and Zydeco music and dance. We have listings and links to Cajun and Zydeco dance events in the Oakland, San Francisco and Northern California area.

If you enjoy Cajun and Zydeco dancing and music you will find a lively community of dancers and musicians here. Come on out to a dance and allons danser!

Please check out our calendar of events and come “pass a good time” with us, or become a member online for free and get an occasional newsletter by e-mail.