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By: Sheryl Bryant
Cajun Zydeco collective Unknown Tongues played the next to last show of the Swanfest Summer Series at Swansboro on September 11, 2016. From Down East (Harkers Island/Gloucester), these Carteret County musicians throw in homegrown seaside North Carolina vibes with the spice and kick of Louisiana and Cajun music and the resulting sound is good as gumbo. Indigenous to Southwestern Louisiana, Zydeco blends R&B and blues into a sort of "bayou bluegrass" if you will. Zydeco and Cajun was introduced by the French Creoles. It combines music of the French, West Indies and African cultures. (Readers may recall other Zydeco bands and artists like Buckwheat Zydeco, Sonny Landreth, Clifton Chenier and Beau Soliel.)
Concert attendees at the Pug Pavilion were shaking and grooving after being peppered with ninety minutes of Down East delight from the Unknown Tongues. Cajun/zydeco is colorful and multi-cultural, and the Unknown Tongues know how to make it tangy. It is a tantalizing mix of music that sparks the imagination. Fancy a clambake in the setting sun at the inlet; envision a shrimp boil down by the Sound, with an old seafarer pulling up the nets from beneath his trusty, white-washed skiff. Zydeco has a tendency to stir up the senses. During the set, flavors of Tabasco and Jambalaya spun in my head and made my taste buds tingle.
Unknown Tongues are:
Bryan Blake - accordion, fiddle , pedal steel and vocals
Barbara Blake - guitar , bass, rub board and vocals
Todd Humphreys - bass, guitar and vocals
Tom Parker - drums
Unknown Tongues play local maritime festivals such as the Gloucester Mardi Gras held Down East in February and the Wild Caught Seafood and Music Festival held there in August of each year. They have also played Hoppin’ John (held at Shakori Hills in Chatham County’s Silk Hope, NC). The passion in their delivery is catchy and the energy is contagious. If you like bluegrass and Louisiana/Roots based country with a Delta Blues twist, you will enjoy Zydeco and you will love the Unknown Tongues.
For more information, contact Bryan Blake @ PO Box 91, Gloucester, NC 28528. Phone: 252-729-5021 or email: Bryan@firstname.lastname@example.org