Swamp Pop By The Bayou Various Artists (By the Bayou)


Louisiana/New Orleans
Ace Records
Catalogue Id:
CDCHD 1397

In the mid-50s, as rock’n’roll swept across the USA, the Cajun youth of South Louisiana and South East Texas absorbed the R&B sounds emanating from New Orleans. This was reflected in their music, making it so distinctive. They thrilled to the sound of Fats Domino, Smiley Lewis and Huey Smith and performed their songs with the bands they formed, while the area’s new breed of songwriters – Bobby Charles, Jimmy Donley, Jivin’ Gene, etc – assimilated the Crescent City style in their work. Swamp pop was born, although the genre had yet to be named.

Several artists were plucked from the scene and sanitised by big record companies to turn them into pop stars, but there is no sanitisation here on “Swamp Pop By The Bayou”. Half the tracks are previously unreleased and most of the rest are pretty obscure. Jivin’ Gene’s ‘Breaking Up Is Hard To Do’ is the only national hit, but even that seems to have dodged CD compilation. Also included are examples from genre favourites such as Johnnie Allan and Warren Storm, plus Rocket Morgan, Gene Terry and Tommy Strange, artists better-known for their rockabilly recordings.

The tracks all come from the tape vaults of South Louisiana record men J.D. Miller, Floyd Soileau, Sam Montel and Eddie Shuler, who recognised good songs and singers when they heard them. The music they captured has been a joy to fans of rockabilly, R&B, blues and swamp pop for over 50 years. The vast untapped stockpile of recordings from these and other sources mean the future of the “…By The Bayou” series seems very exciting.

By Ian Saddler 

Track listing

Side 1

  • 01
    Sneakin' Home - Vince Anthony with The Blue Notes

  • 02
    Hear Love Knockin' - Jay Richards & The Blues Kings

  • 03
    Tell Me - Bobby Webb & The Jets

  • 04
    Oh Oh Baby - Warren Storm

  • 05
    Too High A Price (To Pay For Love) - Rocket Morgan

  • 06
    Breaking Up Is Hard To Do - Jivin' Gene & The Jokers

  • 07
    I Ain't Had No Sleep - Frankie Lowery

  • 08
    I Ran Around - Johnny Bersin & The Dial-Tones

  • 09
    Good Lovin' - John Fred

  • 10
    In This Letter - Ronnie Bennett

  • 11
    Lonely Lonely Heart - Tommy Strange

  • 12
    She's Walking Toward Me - Frankie Lowery

  • 13
    Did You Leave Something Else (For Me) - Rocket Morgan

  • 14
    No Season On Squeezing - Charles Page

  • 15
    The Convict And The Rose - Johnnie Allan & The Krazy Kats

  • 16
    You're On My Mind - Doug Charles & The Boogie Kings

  • 17
    This Life I Live - Warren Storm

  • 18
    You Jezebel - Guitar Jeff

  • 19
    I'm Ready - George

  • 20
    What Am I To Do - Tommy Strange

  • 21
    Operator This Is Elbert - Peto Marlow & The Rhythm Kings

  • 22
    Cry Your Heart Out - Donnie Williams & The Blue Notes

  • 23
    What Can I Do (I Still Love You) - Gene Terry with The Down Beats

  • 24
    I'm Leaving You - Warren Storm

  • 25
    Deedle Dee Deedle Dee - Bee Arnold

  • 26
    Rose Marie - Buck Rogers & His Jets

  • 27
    Walkin' Home - Rocket Morgan

  • 28
    Down In New Orleans - John Fred & The Playboys

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Another indispensable collection for lovers of the Louisiana rock n roll sound.

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