In this episode of Confetti Park, we hear a childhood music memory from David Rosser, a talented guitarist and multi instrumentalist who lives in New Orleans. Dave shares about how his big brother was one of his greatest musical influences—and how they bonded and he learned from listening to records—especially the Beatles!
Dave has toured the world several times with different musical groups. He also produces, recorded, and mixes at his studio, Chateau Daveaux. Among those who he has performed and/or recorded with are the Afghan Whigs, the Twilight Singers, Mark Broussard, Ani Di Franco, Terry McDermott, Mark Lanegan Band, and the Gutter Twins. Most recently, Dave has been performing around New Orleans with Gal Holiday and the Honky Tonk Revue.
Lucky for us, Dave Rosser is a featured guitarist on the upcoming Confetti Park Players CD, featuring a children’s choir based in Algiers. Check out his masterful work behind Mr. Okra and the kids on “Have You Seen the Okra Man?”
What do you do with a cow that does not moo?
Westwego’s own Mel Lecompte, Jr. explores this conundrum in his colorful children’s tale, The Ice Cream Cow. Here he narrates for Confetti Park! Available for purchase on Amazon
Living on a farm with her friends the Chocolate Chip Chicken and the Soda Pop Duck, the Ice Cream Cow has a problem. While there are many things she can do — such as hop like a kangaroo — the poor cow does not moo. Kids will love the rhythmic tale of the cherry-topped, polka-dotted bovine and the quest for her true voice. Savvy parents who read this story to their little ones will enjoy scanning the illustrations for inside references meant to keep big people’s eyes in the book and not on their watches.
Mel is an elementary school teacher, an award-winning journalist and cartoonist, a musician and an entertainer (check out his band Mel and the Moodoggies), and a dad who writes and illustrates his own books, including T-Boy and the Terrible Turtle.
In this music memory for Confetti Park, jazz researcher and music promoter Tom Stagg shares how he became fascinated with New Orleans music in 1949, as a youngster growing up in England. Blame it on Louis Armstrong! He moved to New Orleans in the 1960s.
Tom Stagg is one of the owners of the New Orleans music label 504 Records, which he established in 1979. (Before that, his label was called NOLA Records.) The label specializes in traditional jazz music of New Orleans. For years, Tom was instrumental in organizing tours for New Orleans musicians such as Kid Thomas, John Handy, Emanuel Sayles, Andrew Morgan, Louis Nelson and Alton Purnell, and later, Fats Domino and Dr. John.
Tom himself was a musician for many years (bass, piano) as well as a professional wrestler! He is also from a musical family—his mother was a vocal soloist and his father was a dance band drummer.
Thank you, Tom!
From the swamps of the Atchafalaya Basin comes The Ghost Tree, a tale so terrifying that children will never forget its warning, and will never look at oak trees the same.
The story of three brothers who defy their parents on All Hallow’s Eve was written by musician Yvette Landry of Breaux Bridge. We are so delighted that Yvette narrated her spooky story for Confetti Park! It is a winner of the 2015 Louisiana Young Readers’ Choice Award.
The story begins in her ancestral home, the small, somewhat isolated community of Isle Labbé, and ends in the swamps of the Atchafalaya Basin. Her grandfather tells her of an ancient Native American legend: A cursed tree that comes to life every Halloween. Unlucky travelers who stumble across the tree on that fateful night are never seen again. He would know after all, he’s the only one ever to survive an encounter with … The Ghost Tree.
From her website: Yvette Landry grew up in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, not far from the levees of the Atchafalaya Basin, North America’s largest swampland. It was in and around that swamp where she learned to hunt, fish, ride horses, dance, understand French, and tell stories.
After earning a master’s degree in education and developing a successful teaching career, she began telling stories through song. The songs were a hit, and so was Yvette. Playing a variety of instruments in several Cajun bands, Yvette also fronts her own band.
Her debut award-winning album titled “Should Have Known” was released in 2010. Over the past several years, Yvette has traveled the world and played countless cultural festivals from the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival to the GrassRoots Festival of Music and Dance in New York. She toured Russia and served as a Cultural Ambassador on behalf of the Library of Congress to perform at the Festival of Traditional American Music.
Learn more about Yvette Landry’s music and stories and her marvelous career on her website, http://yvettelandry.com/.
Confetti Park is a community radio program out of New Orleans. We feature local storytellers and songs that kids love, songs created for kids, or created by kids, right here in Louisiana.
This medley of kids music shows the diversity of Louisiana musicians. Songs featured in this episode, in order:
In this edition of Confetti Park, we have a very special reading by Louisiana children’s author Johnette Downing. This is a narration of her new book, The Fifolet.
The fifolet (or feufollet) is a very spooky Louisiana legend that appears frequently in Cajun and Houmas Indian folklore. The say that the fifolet are swamp spirits making lights deep in the swamps…… Great big eerie balls of light, that seem to float above the water, and beckon the watcher to follow! Interestingly, this kind of legend appears not just Louisiana culture, but around the world. (Ever heard of the will o’ the wisps in Europe or ghost lights in Japan?)
Different explanations blame supernatural spirits, or mischievous elves and fairies, or even the lost souls of pirates guarding lost treasures in the swamp. And some people say it’s nothing but phosphorescent swamp gas making the blue fire.
In her book, which was illustrated by Jennifer Lindsley, Johnette Downing tells about the fifolet through the experience of fisherman Jean-Paul Pierre, who has his heart set on finding the fifolet’s buried treasure.
“Through cypress trees and beards of moss, there is a fire spirit that you never want to cross. It will tease you and coax you and draw you near, but all the Cajuns know that you better beware.”
Worth noting is that the music to this story was also written and performed by Johnette. The music is actually from a song about another swamp creature known in Louisiana: the loup group, featured on her CD From the Gumbo Pot.