Honoring their deep family and community roots in Cajun music, the members of this all-women band express the unabashed energy, intensity and raw emotion that is the hallmark and heart of Cajun music.
- Lafayette, Louisiana
From the Dean’s Desk »
Learn your two-step dance moves now. The four women of Bonsoir, Catin play traditional cajun music that will take you to the Louisiana bayou, their accordion and violin mingling with vocals full of twang.
For some French-speakers, this band’s name may raise eyebrows, but among Cajuns, “catin” is a term of endearment, not a word referring to “ladies of the evening.” To say “Bonsoir, Catin” in Louisiana is to wish someone “Goodnight, Doll” – although even this playful usage of catin hints that the doll in question might be a feisty woman who would prefer to laissez les bons temps rouler into the wee morning hours.
Honoring their deep family and community musical roots, the members of this all-women band express the unabashed energy, intensity and raw emotion that is the hallmark and heart of Cajun music. The group has a broad and deep repertoire that reflects the many facets and decades of Cajun music into the present day. Singer and accordionist Kristi Guillory is equally capable of a raucous growl or sorrowful ballad. Guillory, who earned her M.A in folklore and works a day job as an archivist, has unearthed a number of nearly forgotten Cajun classics and has added a few of her own numbers to the group’s ever expanding repertoire. Her grandfather, guitarist Jesse Duhon who had played with Octa Clark and the Dixie Ramblers inspired Guillory to play music. She carries his legacy well. Christine Balfa Powell is the daughter of one of Cajun music’s most revered players and musical ambassors, the late Dewey Balfa, with whom she began playing music with as a teenager. A wonderful singer and guitarist, she is dedicated to preserving traditional culture. Breaux Bridge native Yvette Landry has been called the “queen of Cajun bass.” This has as much to do with her musical prowess as it does with her former role as Crawfish Festival Queen. She also comes from a deep musical family; her grandfather Lucien Landry of The Louisiana Six was well known throughout the region. Fiddler Anya Shoenegge Burgess doesn’t have direct Cajun roots, but since migrating to Arnaudville, Louisiana, where she owns and operates a violin shop, she has absorbed Cajun music and culture to her core. When not performing with Bonsoir, Catin, she plays with the Magnolia Sisters.