In commemoration of Louisiana’s 200th anniversary as a state, which was celebrated back on April 30, Rolling Stone Magazine put out a piece today, “Born on the Bayou: Exploring Louisiana in 18 Songs.”
Eighteen songs were chosen because Louisiana became the 18th state back on April 30, 1812.
Arguably, there isn’t another state in the union—or perhaps a region in the world—that has contributed as much to popular music as Louisiana. Compiling a list from the rich gumbo of jazz, blues, country, rock ‘n’ roll, Cajun-zydeco and what-have-you that makes up our music is an arduous task, but here are 17 of the songs from authentic Louisiana musicians that Rolling Stone came up with.
We are showing 17 instead of 18, because one of the songs, “A Milli” by Lil Wayne has lyrics that we just aren’t going to put up:
1. “Wild Man,” Galactic, performed in Tokyo of all places:
2. “Little Liza Jane,” Huey “Piano” Smith & His Clowns:
3. “Mr. Big Stuff,” Jean Knight:
4. “Diggy Liggy Lo,” Doug and Rusty Kershaw:
5. “Tipitina,” Professor Longhair:
6. “Time Is on My Side,” Irma Thomas:
7. “Shake Your Hips,” Slim Harpo:
8. “Be My Guest,” Fats Domino:
9. “Buttercup,” Lucinda Williams:
10. “Look-Ka Py Py,” The Meters:
11. “Bon Ton Roulet,” Clifton Chenier:
12. “I Walk on Guilded Splinters,” Dr. John:
13. “Yellow Moon,” Neville Brothers:
14. “Suzie Q,” Dale Hawkins:
15. “Sneakin’ Sally Through the Alley,” Lee Dorsey:
16. “Do Whatcha Wanna,” Rebirth Brass Band:
17. “Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans,” Louis Armstrong:
All and all, not a bad selection, although there are quite a few obvious omissions. How can you have a collection of music that is supposed to define the state and leave this one out?
Also, I would have liked to have seen something from one of Louisiana’s most unsung musical heroes, Faron Young, of Shreveport:
And, c’mon, not having my fellow Ferridian Jerry Lee Lewis on the list? I just can’t let that one go. After all, who’s gonna play that old piano after he’s gone?