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Rare Clifton Chenier film to screen at SXSW tonight

Clifton Chenier

SXSW is well underway, with thousands of music and film fans converging in the streets of Austin, TX to make new musical discoveries. One of those discoveries could be Clifton Chenier, as the late Louisiana bandleader is showcased in a recently uncovered concert film that will be screened at C-Boy’s Heart & Soul tonight.

Author Todd Mouton found the film and debuted it earlier this week in Vermillionville, LA to help promote his upcoming book Way Down in Louisiana, a “musical biography” that digs into the lives of Chenier and his contemporaries. Herman Fuselier was at the screening and documentated the reactions of Chenier fans and family members in an article for The Advertiser. From the article:

Nearly 300 people cheered, sang, laughed and cried as Chenier and his Red Hot Louisiana performed in a previously-unseen film from 1978….

In the film, Chenier and band were in their prime, racing through 15 two-steps, waltzes, blues and boogies. The shows were recorded before a packed dance floor of college-aged kids at Kingfish in Baton Rouge and in between rooster fights at Jay’s Lounge in Cankton. A few songs are originals that never appeared on a Chenier record.

Learn more about the book here and check out what else Lafayette Live is bringing to Austin here.

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