Compass Records Signs BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet

Compass Records Signs BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet
Esteemed roots music label welcomes “The best Cajun band in the world”
to their extensive roster
(Nashville, TN) Nov 8, 2012: Nashville-based
independent roots music label Compass Records is proud to announce the
new signing of GRAMMY award-winning Cajun group BeauSoleil avec Michael
Doucet. The relationship grew organically—Doucet first collaborated with
Compass Records on the eponymous GRAMMY-nominated Fiddlers 4 album with
fellow fiddle powerhouses Darol Anger, Bruce Molsky and cellist Rushad
Eggleston in 2002—and, in 2012, he reconnected with Compass co-owners
Alison Brown and Garry West while performing at the 2011 National Folk
Festival in Nashville. This meeting sparked a conversation between the
two parties and, a short time later, the band inked the deal and has
begun work on their Compass Records debut album, From Bamako to Carencro, slated for release in early 2013. 
The title
takes its name from the cultural connection between Bamako, in Mali,
West Africa and Louisiana, symbolized in name by the Lafayette, LA
suburb of Carencro, but that’s not the only cultural connection at work.
“BeauSoleil has brought Cajun/Creole-rooted music to the world since
1975, and Nashville and the land of the bayous have been sharing
musicians and songs since the early 1920s.  I’m looking forward to
expanding and retelling some of these musical occurrences on our new
Compass release,” says Doucet. Michael Pillot, BeauSoleil’s manager and
the album’s producer adds: “Cajun music’s blend of blues & country
music with a profound French influence has seen a steady stream of
talent flowing from Louisiana to Nashville beginning in the late 20’s
thru today. The likes of Doug Kershaw (Johnny Cash wrote the liner notes
for Doug’s debut LP), Jimmy C. Newman, Jo-el Sonnier, D. L. Meynard,
Tony Joe White and Lucinda Williams have had very successful
associations with various labels from the Nashville community. Our
relationship with Compass will continue that time honored tradition.”
BeauSoleil, hailed by Garrison Keillor of NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion as
“the best Cajun band in the world,” is the most well known band
performing traditional and original folk music from the Cajun culture in
Louisiana. And, with flavors of jazz, blues and rock and roll, the
band’s cross-genre appeal and instrumental prowess make them a natural
fit within the Compass Records’ renowned roster. “Over the years,
Compass has tried to be a beacon of quality for roots music of all
genres,” comments Compass co-founder Garry West, “As we continue to grow
our roster in all directions, we’re delighted to welcome an act of such
distinction as BeauSoleil, one of the great modern proponents of Cajun
music. The fact that the greatest Cajun band in the world has chosen to
align with us is tremendously validating and affirms the value of
Compass’ artist-oriented label model.”
international acclaim and ceaseless touring, BeauSoleil represents the
pantheon of Cajun music and musicians. The band features Michael Doucet
on fiddle and lead vocals, brother David Doucet on guitar and vocals,
Billy Ware on percussion Tommy Alesi on drums and Mitchell Reed on bass
and fiddle. They have had music featured on the HBO hit series Treme
and have an upcoming full band performance during the final season of
the show. The band has performed at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage
Festival for over the last three decades as well as the Smithsonian
Folklife Festival, The Voodoo Festival (where, this year, Doucet was a
special guest of Thomas Dolby), and are frequent guests on NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion.
Records has been called “one of the greatest independent labels of the
last decade” by Billboard Magazine. The label group is home to diverse
artists such as Colin Hay, Altan, Peter Rowan, Victor Wooten and Luka
Bloom, and through the acquisition of Green Linnet and Mulligan Records
hosts the largest catalog of Celtic music in the world. The company also
handles distribution for UK-based folk music label Navigator Records
and the iconic Americana imprint Dead Reckoning.

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