PINE LEAF BOYS
June 25 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Louisiana’s finest, four-time Grammy-Nominated, world-renown Pine Leaf Boys have made a name for presenting their own inimitable brand of Louisiana music with youthful exuberance. Hailing from the southwest Louisiana, the Pine Leaf Boys, known for their wild shows and thoughtful arrangements, have breathed new life into Louisiana music, reviving ancient songs and bringing them to the bandstand. Being described in the New York Times as, “… the link that connects the young and the old generations,” and, “the best new, energetic, and fun Cajun band in a very long time,” the Pine Leaf Boys play the old fashion dance hall standards while making a priority to bring many of the more obscure songs of past masters into their repertoire and play them with gusto.
The Pine Leaf Boys have been invited on six occasions by the U.S. State Department to tour the world and present true music to Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Jerusalem in 2009 and again to Latvia, Denmark, and Slovenia is 2010 and a third time to the “Stan” countries in 2012 (Uzbek, Tajik, and Kyrgz). The variety and energy they release evolves through their shows, bringing multi-faceted angles to Cajun, Creole, and Zydeco. Their mission is to present the beautiful, powerful music of their ancestors and present the real Cajun music to the world and prove that it is still thriving and full of life. The Pine Leaf Boys have preserved the traditional Cajun sound, while allowing it to breathe and stretch with those who play it. Click here to see a list of the last 11 years of touring around the 23 countries and 47 states.
WILSON SAVOY, Cajun accordion, piano & vocals, GRAMMY WINNER 2012 for Best Regional Roots, has played accordion for most of his life, having been given as a child a hand-built accordion by his renown father, Marc Savoy. The accordion was built from the wood of a sassafras tree that was planted by Wilson’s grandfather. It was not until Wilson moved to Baton Rouge to study at the University where he became completely addicted to playing and progressing on the accordion, inspired by the styles of his heros, Iry Lejeune, Amede Ardoin and naturally his father, Marc Savoy. Piano was his first musical love, having begun boogie-woogie styles at the age of 10, inspired by the music of Louisiana wild man, Jerry Lee Lewis.
Wilson has taught Cajun Music Ensemble at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette for 3 years, and continues to teach one-on-one lessons through the University, all through the Tommy Comeaux Endowement. Wilson was awarded the key to the city of Lafayette in April 2013 by Mayor Joey Durel.
Wilson has appeared on HBO’s “Treme” playing the role of himself in three episodes, as well as the film “All the King’s Men” with Sean Penn and John Goodman. Wilson continues to travel with the Pine Leaf Boys, as well as the Savoy Family Band (mom, dad, and brother Joel), as well as his Grammy award winning group, “Courtbouillon.”
COURTNEY GRANGER, fiddle & vocals, was born in Eunice, Louisiana where he lives today. Master fiddler andextraordinary strong singer, Courtney hails from the Balfa family lineage, which is evident in his powerful vocals and heavily Balfa-influenced fiddling. Courtney produced his own solo CD in the mid 90s, which brought him praise from the Cajun music scene, landing him several CFMA awards. In 1999, Courtney joined Balfa Toujours on bass and fiddle, playing alongside the great Kevin Wimmer. Courtney has also recorded with the legendary Tim O’Brien.
Courtney’s endless repertoire of both Cajun and classic country tunes, as well his impeccable thoughtful fiddling and soulful singing, has made him one of the most sought-after Cajun fiddlers in the world, playing with legends Jason Frey, Dirk Powell, and Horace Trahan. The Pine Leaf Boys are honored to share the stage with Courtney, who joined the group in summer 2008.
JON BERTRAND, guitars, was raised in the thriving hub of Jeff Davis Parish that is Pine Island or Crapeauville where he began life as a cowboy. He began playing guitar and quickly became a rhythm machine, playing with Dexter Ardoin, Cory McCauley, and the Lost Bayou Ramblers.
Jon’s major influences are Cory McCauley, Harry Choates, the Hackberry Ramblers, Iry LeJeune, Austin Pitre, and Sonny Meaux. Jon completed his studies at UL in French. Jon is a rocker, and he is influenced by many groups, not just Cajun.
DREW SIMON, drums & vocals, Drew Simon was born and raised in Lafayette, Louisiana and developed an interest in Cajun music in his late teens. At 18, he started playing drums and singing with his brother in a local group called Acadien.
Soon after, he learned how to play the accordion, guitar, and bass and developed a great passion for singingsome of the forgotten cajun classics by the likes of Belton Richard, Lawrence Walker, Philip Alleman, Vorence Barzas and the Balfa Brothers. Drew is strictly a traditionalist, playing and singing in a style which has been described as a “simple, older, blue collared cajun.”
As he sits behind the drumset or the accordion, he hopes to bring back some of the memories, spirit, and soul of a generation long ago, of Cajun musicians who told their life sorrows and pains through their music. He is currently a graduate from in Anthropology.
THOMAS DAVID, bass, was born and raised in Lafayette, LA. By the age of 8 he was playing drums alongside his father, Ken David, bassist with Jambalaya Cajun Band. At age 16, his father bought an upright bass and Thomas immediately fell in love with the instrument, and Thomas quickly became become a rock-solid bass player in both Cajun and Zydeco music.
Thomas’ influences are Bob Wills, Asleep at the Wheel, D.L. Menard, Jambalaya Cajun Band, Aldus Roger, Adam Hebert and his biggest, his Dad. Thomas also enjoys walks on the beach and aspires to one day live inside a canoe.