Edius Naquin Interview, 1985

I had become fascinated with the ballads recorded by Mr. Naquin and wanted to meet him. He lived on a tiny farm in the town of Reddell, Louisiana, near Mamou. I had heard many of his recorded ballads on field recordings made by friends and colleagues. Unlike the usual Cajun dancehall fare, the stories/texts of his songs were complex and beautiful stories, dating from very early French ballads. There was so much variety in the styles and melodies he did, sort of a portrait of the times..his times..I made a date with his lovely daughter, Mildred Brignac, to go to his house and visit him and interview him.

Mildred also had a home recorded cassette of many previously unrecorded songs by him which were a treasure trove to a ballad lover like myself. I did a nice interview with him and with Mildred and recorded some songs there in his living room. Later, with a grant from the Jazz Fest, I put out a cassette and very big booklet of many of his songs and their lyrics. This project is still available on my website.

– Ann Savoy

  • Edius Naquin, 1985 00:00
Interviewee: Edius Naquin
Interviewer: Ann savoy
Date: January 30, 1985
Location: Lafayette, LA
Language: French / français

This is an interview originally recorded for research purposes. It is presented here in its raw state, unedited except to remove some irrelevant sections and blank spaces. All rights to the interview are reserved by the Arhoolie Foundation. Please do not use anything from this website without permission.

Statement on the passing of Chris Strachwitz

Arhoolie Records Founder
July 1, 1931 – May 5, 2023

We celebrate the life of our founder, friend, and great record man Chris Strachwitz. He died peacefully at home in Marin County, CA, surrounded in his last days by dear friends and family. Over his 91 years, Chris captured the music that represents the best “down home music” the world has to offer.

He was at the forefront of nearly all the roots revivals over the last 60 years including blues, zydeco, Cajun, Norteño and Tejano music. His drive to document traditional music helped introduce the nation to our diverse musical heritage. He had the foresight to save music that might have otherwise been lost to obscurity and played a role in strengthening cultural traditions through his records, films, and most recently the Arhoolie Foundation. He cared for those around him, fought for royalties and recognition for Arhoolie artists, and provided counsel to countless musicians, writers, film makers, and academics.

Plans for a public celebration of his life will be announced in the coming weeks. Today we’re thinking of all that Chris brought to our lives and the lives of the musicians and fans with whom he shared his passion.