Harry Choates

Genres: Cajun & Zydeco
Descriptive "tags": cajun country fiddle world Powered by AudioScrobbler
Decades Active: 1980s 1990s 2000s

Biography

26 December 1922, Rayne, Louisiana, USA, d. 17 July 1951, Austin, Texas, USA. Choates, who has been called the Cajun Hank Williams and the Godfather of Cajun Music, is reckoned by many authorities to be the man most responsible for the genre becoming part of country music. During the Depression, Choates and his mother relocated to Port Arthur, Texas, where he grew up regularly spending much of his time listening to music in local honky tonks. He had a natural talent for playing instruments and soon became proficient on accordion, guitar and steel guitar, before finally favouring the fiddle. At the age of 12, already becoming addicted to alcohol, he was playing fiddle in local barbershops.

In the late 30s, he played in various Cajun bands, including that of fiddler Leo Soileau, one of the first artists to record Cajun music. It was then that he undoubtedly first learned ‘Jole Blon’ (‘Pretty Blonde’), a song that Soileau had...

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