Zydeco soul with Andre Thierry in Red Room

Dorothy Brown
Andre Thierry will give the Red Room a taste of Creole on Friday.
Photo by Dorothy Brown

A modern-day purveyor of zydeco music will share a jambalaya of songs in the Crystal Bay Casino’s Red Room on Friday.

Andre Thierry is the West Coast’s champion of the Creole with his contemporary take on the French music that germinated centuries ago in Southern Louisiana. Thierry, who plays accordion, has been described as a “zydesoul” and an alternative Creole player.

Thierry’s grandparents moved to Northern California in the Great Migration, bringing along their Creole culture. They put on concerts featuring popular Zydeco artists. Thierry was just 3 years old when he heard and met Zydeco great Clifton Chenier. By the time he was 12, the youngster from Richmond, California, had started his first band.

According to press materials, Thierry was regularly invited to play with visiting bands, such as the late John Delafose, his son, Geno Delafose, and many local Zydeco and Cajun bands, including the late Danny Poullard of the California Cajun Orchestra.

In an interview earlier this year with the Houston Press, Thierry, 36, said, “I came up under the influence of all things Clifton Chenier. Clifton had no fear — if he liked a blues song he heard, he’d adapt it to his sound. If he liked a rock and roll hit, he’d adapt it to fit his set. People love the old traditional Cajun tunes, but as an artist and a band, you have to bring in some new material and some popular tunes now and then, keep things fresh and interesting.”

Thierry is a virtuoso on all the accordion types, single row, double row, triple row and piano key.

In addition to Friday’s free 10 p.m. show in Crystal Bay, the Grammy-nominated Thierry will headline the Oct. 1 Creole United Festival in San Rafael, California.

  • Andre Thierry
    When: 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9
    Where: Crystal Bay Casino Red Room
    Cover: free

ABOUT Tim Parsons

Tim Parsons
Tim Parsons is the editor of Tahoe Onstage who first moved to Lake Tahoe in 1992. Before starting Tahoe Onstage in 2013, he worked for 29 years at newspapers, including the Tahoe Daily Tribune, Eureka Times-Standard and Contra Costa Times. He was the recipient of the 2011 Keeping the Blues Alive award for Journalism.

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