Quick Bites: Johnette Downing, Louisiana's Pied Piper

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Children in Louisiana grow up with so many local traditions that schools could practically add an extra class to cover all of them! Luckily, songwriter Johnette Downing is around to set these traditional stories to music. Johnette’s award-winning books and songs have earned her many nicknames, from “the pied piper of Louisiana music traditions” to “the musical ambassador to children.”  She described her new album "Swamp Romp like this:  When thinking about a concept for this recording, we naturally thought of a Louisiana dance party for children filled with songs that evoke the joie de vivre, or zest for life, that we live everyday in Louisiana. This recording offers a mélange of many of the Louisiana roots music styles we love, from the Cajun, zydeco, and swamp pop of South Louisiana; to the rhythm & blues, gospel, jazz, brass band, and street music of New Orleans; to the rock’n’roll of North Louisiana; along with a small side trip to Mississippi. We asked our musician friends who represent the best in each genre to record with us. The result, we hope, is a record that will be enjoyed equally by children, parents, and educators, and maybe even music fans who simply enjoy a good Louisiana tune. From our food to our music to our diverse cultural heritage, we open our hearts, homes, and tables to friends, family, and visitors. So come on in and join the fun. Allons danser! Bailemos! Let’s dance!