SHOWCASING LOUISIANA: Keeping swamp pop music alive

SHOWCASING LOUISIANA: La. musician hopes to keep swamp pop music alive

PIERRE PART, La. (WAFB) - Louisiana is home to many great things, including swamp pop. The genre is a mixture of rock n’ roll, rhythm and blues, country western, and French musical influences.

Donald Richard, known on stage as Don Rich, is one of today’s leading swamp pop artist. He has spent much of his life playing music and sharing Cajun culture all over the country.

“I love what I do, and I do what I love. Can’t get a better job than that,” said Rich.

Rich’s passion for music was ignited as a young boy while watching his dad play with his band, called The Richard Brothers.

“I was 8 or 9-years-old. The drummer, my second cousin, he’d take me and put me on his lap and I’d hold the sticks. I wouldn’t know what I was doing, but I knew what I wanted to do,” said Rich.

Rich says his fate in music was permanently sealed after his dad died at 34-years-old; Rich was 11.

“He died two days after my birthday. Ever since then, I’ve been playing music, man,” said Rich.

Rich says it’s not easy keeping the genre alive, however, his hard work paid off when he was inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame on November 18, 2018.

“Man, that was like a hundred sacks of crawfish in my book, you know, that was an amazing feeling,” Rich said.

Thus far, Rich has recorded 11 albums, the first of which was released in 1994.
Thus far, Rich has recorded 11 albums, the first of which was released in 1994. (Source: WAFB)

With a lifelong career on stage and a beautiful family, Rich says he doesn’t have many regrets. However, he says there’s one thing he wishes he could do a little differently.

“I wish that I could have had the chance and the opportunity to play with my dad, but I didn’t get that chance, but it’s... one day we’re going to play somewhere else on a stage or somewhere, I do believe,” said Rich.

Rich says he’s hopeful swamp pop music will continue touching the lives of others, the way it has touched his.

“After I’m dead and gone, I would hope it will continue growing. I hope and pray that the young ones tonight take it and put it in their heart as they grow old,” said Rich.

You can follow Rich’s Facebook page to stay updated on performance dates and locations.

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