Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience
June 18 @ 8:00 pm
Grammy-winning zydeco master, teacher, activist and eighth generation Louisiana Creole Terrance Simien brings his red hot band back to Mass MoCA for a night of music, storytelling, and joy on the eve of Juneteenth to celebrate the holiday.
Simien has become one of the most respected and accomplished artists in American roots music today. He and his band mates have performed more than 10,000 concerts, toured millions of miles to more than 45 countries during their eventful career.
For nearly 40 years, two- time Grammy award winning Terrance Simien and 8th generation Louisiana Creole, has been shattering the myths about what his indigenous Zydeco roots music is – and is not. It most certainly is American roots music, and it is music born of the black and mixed race French speaking Creoles of South Louisiana. It’s exhilarating and as complex and diverse as the Creoles. It’s also more than just one rhythm and one tempo. Sure it’s about dancing; ‘less dancing please’ said no-one ever!
But it’s also about grooving in place and dancing freely. And yes indeed, it also about vocal performances – Terrance’s lead vocals and the stunning three part harmonies of him, Danny and Stan – are proof that the vocal performance matters in all genres. Finally, it is most definitely dynamic and evolving. The late, Dr. John and Terrance’s friend/hero once told him, “if the music ain’t changin, it’s dyin.” Terrance says he could not agree more.
Simien leads a massively skilled Zydeco Experience band with long time member and creative collaborator Danny Williams (30+ years, two-Grammy awardwinning) on keyboards, Stan Chambers (10+ years, GRAMMY award winning) on bass, Ian Molinaro – Thompson on drums, and our newest members, Revon Andrews on trombone and Orlando Gilbert on saxophone. Both Ian and Orlando are Berklee College graduates — two Berklee grads in one zydeco band — Terrance says it’s definitely a first for this genre.
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In the 2022 Festival of Contemporary Music, Tanglewood Music Center Fellows will perform a free chamber music concert with works by Carlos Simon and more.