Cajun music originated in the 1700’s from the French Acadians who immigrated to Louisiana. Music was a favorite pastime, and it was common to have small evening bands playing on people’s balconies after a long day.
Although often associated with zydeco music, Cajun music is its own distinct genre. Cajun music began with a small group of instruments – violin, accordion, and triangle – but has evolved over the decades. It eventually included many other musical instruments that now play a vital role in modern Cajun music.
the guitar It can take center stage in many bands, but it tends to be a supporting instrument in Cajun music.
Most Cajun songs contain one or two tunes.
If it has two tones, then the first melody is called “melody” and the second is called “turn.”
The guitar part of a song with melody and turn can remain the same throughout the entire song.
Or you can play the same chord progression and playing pattern in both Tune and Turn.
In general, the guitar plays an important role in maintaining the rhythm of the song and creating a supporting space for the main instruments.
2. Bass guitar and upright bass
It uses traditional Cajun music upright bass, while modern Cajun music and Cajun bands have an extension bass guitar player.
The incorporation of bass into Cajun music began due to the inspiration inspired by swing music in the 1930s.
It primarily remained in the Cajun swing kingdom for several decades, but grew more prominent in the 1960s when fais do-do music became popular.
The rise of fais do-dos or Cajun public dance halls expanded the range of Cajun music and incorporated many other instruments, including the bass guitar.
Enhanced by the power and fullness of live performances, this instrument continues to play a lively supporting role that works in harmony with rhythms and acoustic guitar.
the accordion It often takes center stage in Cajun music. It was introduced to Louisiana in the late 19th century and helped develop the regional style of music in southern Louisiana.
The primary influence of the accordion was the development of the Cajun two-step and the waltz, two types of music that fit well with the mechanics of the accordion.
They briefly kept out of the spotlight in the 1930s when stringed instruments became more popular in the World War II era.
They quickly regained popularity after the war, and it is now difficult to find a cajon band without an accordion playing the lead.
the Violin (which is another name for ViolinIt is one of the original instruments in Cajun music.
Because of its compactness and portability, many early immigrants brought it with them as they crossed into the Americas from Europe.
Eventually, more people immigrated to Louisiana, and the Acadians brought their game with them in the late 1700s.
It was the main instrument of Cajun music until the introduction of the accordion. However, she has not completely strayed from the spotlight.
Today, the violin plays a versatile role in Cajun ensembles. It often plays the melody, but it can also help keep the rhythm.
Many Cajun quartets will have instrumentalists to play the harmonies that give the song a fuller sound.
5. Drums and percussion
Drums and Percussion did not become part of Cajun music until the 1930s.
However, the influence of rock ‘n’ roll in the 1960s made its way into the genre.
Now, it’s hard to find a cajon band that doesn’t use a drum kit.
Drums secured their place in Cajun music when they were incorporated into fais do-do music.
They provided a strong percussion that encouraged people to dance in fais do-dos.
Unlike rock ‘n’ roll bands that use a full drum kit, Cajun bands tend to have a more pronounced group with bass drum, hi-hat, and snare.
the harmonica Not a sight to be seen in Cajun music bands. However, many people recognize it as a staple of Cajun music.
There are even harmonica competitions held during the Acadian and Cajun music festivals.
The harmonica is beginning to appear in modern Cajun music.
Several notable harmonica players include Jerry Devilliers and Esomem Fontenot.
These musicians paved the way to help this instrument secure a permanent place in Cajun music.
The cajon harmonica plays a role similar to the accordion or violin in a cajon ensemble.
It usually carries the melody and is the signature instrument in most songs.
the triangle also goes throughT Verin Cajun music. This term is derived from the French words “petit fer”, which means “little piece of iron”.
The tee-fer is one of the original instruments of Cajun music. People originally made T-shirts from old harira to keep the rhythm of traditional songs.
It was ideal for musicians because it was portable and could easily be placed on a small stage on someone’s balcony.
While the triangle may not have a strong role in big bands and orchestras, the tee-fer holds a respectable place in Cajun ensembles.
Modern Cajun bands may use a drum set, but most drummers usually have a tee or triangle in their set.
8. Steel guitar
steel guitar Its popularity soared in the 1940s with the era of the Cajun swing. It’s not as widely used as it used to be, but you can still find steel guitarists in bands playing Do you do Music.
Many musicians have also used the steel guitar to infuse country elements into Cajun music.
Cajun songs with a rustic flair often feature steel guitar as the main melody. Other Cajun subgenres often use this instrument to help maintain the rhythm in most parts of the song.
If a steel guitar has a tone, it is often within a solo break built near the middle of the song.
Summing up our Cajun Tool List
Cajun music is a distinct genre with a rich history that developed with important periods of Western history.
It is a type of music that holds a special place in the hearts of many people because it provides a respite in the midst of very difficult times.
Today, Cajun music sticks to its traditional roots and still features the accordion and violin as the main instruments. However, this genre is a melting pot of other musical genres.
Therefore, as modern Cajun music continues to grow and develop, we would not be surprised if the list of Cajun musical instruments expands in the coming years.