Louisiana’s finest, Grammy winning, four-time Grammy-nominated, world-renowned Pine Leaf Boys have made a name for presenting their own inimitable brand of Cajun music with youthful exuberance. Hailing from the southwest Louisiana, the Pine Leaf Boys, known for their wild shows and thoughtful arrangements, have breathed new life into Cajun music, reviving ancient songs and bringing them to the bandstand. Being described in the New York Times as, “… the link that connects the young and the old generations,” and, “the best new, energetic, and fun Cajun band in a very long time,” the Pine Leaf Boys play the old fashion dance hall standards while making a priority to bring many of the more obscure songs of past masters into their repertoire and play them with gusto.
The Pine Leaf Boys have been invited on two occasions by the U.S. State Department to tour the world and present true music to Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Jerusalem in 2009 and again to Latvia, Denmark, and Slovenia is 2010. The variety and energy they release evolves through their shows, bringing multi-faceted angles to Cajun, Creole, and Zydeco. Their mission is to present the beautiful, powerful music of their ancestors and present the real Cajun music to the world and prove that it is still thriving and full of life. The Pine Leaf Boys have preserved the traditional Cajun sound, while allowing it to breathe and stretch with those who play it.
WILSON SAVOY, Cajun accordion & vocals, was born and raised near Eunice, Louisiana in 1982. Wilson began playing boogie-woogie piano at ten years old after becoming becoming completely enthused about the wild-piano-playing Louisiana-native, Jerry Lee Lewis.
While in his early teens, Wilson’s father, Marc, gave him a homemade accordion built from the wood of a Sasaffras tree that his grandfather planted. Wilson intensely studied the styles of his musicial heroes Amede Ardoin and Iry Lejeune, as well as his father (known well for being one of the masters of the Cajun accordion) and soon developed a style of his own, full of punch, syncopation, and energy.
When not on the bandstand, Wilson is a frequent visitor at jam sessions at his father’s music store or the Blue Moon Saloon, or he is teaching at music camps all over the world including Fiddle Tunes, Augusta, and Tikendalch in France. Wilson has played in many groups over the years like the White Mule Boys, the Red Stick Ramblers, the Savoy-Family Band, the Church Point Aces avec Paul Daigle and Mitch Reed, and his heart has always been with Cajun music. In 2006, Wilson debuted in the film “All the King’s Men” as a piano player alongside actor Sean Penn. In 2010, Wilson had a speaking role in the HBO Series “Tremé” playing himself.
Read Wilson’s blog writings
Wilson Savoy, le Grand, qui aussi s’appelle ‘Wiltar’ à l’âge de 15 ans, a sauvé un bus entier rempli de Mexicains sans defense lorsque ce même bus était sur le point de plonge dans le Fleuve. C’est à ce moment là, sans la moindre hesitation, que Wilson a sauté pour sauver tout ces gens de la noyade. Parmi les autres faits notoires de la vie de ce heros, il a egalement trouvé le remède miracle contre l’ennui! Bravo Wilson!
COURTNEY GRANGER, fiddle & vocals, was born in Eunice, Louisiana where he lives today. Master fiddler andextraordinary strong singer, Courtney hails from the Balfa family lineage, which is evident in his powerful vocals and heavily Balfa-influenced fiddling. Courtney produced his own solo CD in the mid 90s, which brought him praise from the Cajun music scene, landing him several CFMA awards. In 1999, Courtney joined Balfa Toujours on bass and fiddle, playing alongside the great Kevin Wimmer. Courtney has also recorded with the legendary Tim O’Brien
Courtney’s endless repertoire of both Cajun and classic country tunes, as well his impeccable thoughtful fiddling and soulful singing, has made him one of the most sought-after Cajun fiddlers in the world, playing with legends Jason Frey, Dirk Powell, and Horace Trahan. The Pine Leaf Boys are honored to share the stage with Courtney, who joined the group in summer 2008.
JON BERTRAND, guitars, was raised in the thriving hub of Jeff Davis Parish that is Pine Island or Crapeauville where he began life as a cowboy. He began playing guitar and quickly became a rhythm machine, playing with Dexter Ardoin, Cory McCauley, and the Lost Bayou Ramblers.
Jon’s major influences are Cory McCauley, Harry Choates, the Hackberry Ramblers, Iry LeJeune, Austin Pitre, and Sonny Meaux. Jon completed his studies at UL in French. Jon is a rocker, and he is influenced by many groups, not just Cajun.
Jon Bertand est un homme qui ne joue pas par les règles. Il joue sûrement de la guitare, mais il y n’a pas un tas de monde qui sait que Jon est actuellement un homme qui a commencé sa carrière comme un strip-teaseuse. Tout le temps en temps, on peut voir Jon entrain d’enlever ses vêtements pour faire crier son public.
DREW SIMON, drums & vocals, Drew Simon was born and raised in Lafayette, Louisiana and developed an interest in Cajun music in his late teens. At 18, he started playing drums and singing with his brother in a local group called Acadien.
Soon after, he learned how to play the accordion, guitar, and bass and developed a great passion for singingsome of the forgotten cajun classics by the likes of Belton Richard, Lawrence Walker, Philip Alleman, Vorence Barzas and the Balfa Brothers. Drew is strictly a traditionalist, playing and singing in a style which has been described as a “simple, older, blue collared cajun.”
As he sits behind the drumset or the accordion, he hopes to bring back some of the memories, spirit, and soul of a generation long ago, of Cajun musicians who told their life sorrows and pains through their music. He is currently a student at UL-Lafayette in Anthropology.
Drew Simon est né et été élevé près de Lafayette, mais pour Drew, les choses sont toujours à la renverse. Comme Merlin le magicien, Drew vit sa vie à la renverse, qui veut dire que quand il est né, il est mort comme un petit bébé, et quand il va être naître, il sera un vieux homme à la fin de sa vie. Ouais, on sait que c’est un peu compliqué, cette condition, mais c’est par rapport à ça que Drew a l’esprit d’un vieux Cajun, comme ses sentiments et sa passion quand il chante. Sa voix émotionnelle se donne les frissons à lui-même, mais sa voix perçante donne les frissons et les larmes de passé à son public qui crie seulement… “Drew!”
THOMAS DAVID, bass, was born and raised in Lafayette, LA. By the age of 8 he was playing drums alongside his father, Ken David, bassist with Jambalaya Cajun Band. At age 16, his father bought an upright bass and Thomas immediately fell in love with the instrument, and Thomas quickly became become a rock-solid bass player in both Cajun and Zydeco music.
Thomas’ influences are Bob Wills, Asleep at the Wheel, D.L. Menard, Jambalaya Cajun Band, Aldus Roger, Adam Hebert and his biggest, his Dad.
Thomas also enjoys walks on the beach and aspires to one day live inside a canoe.
Pine Leaf Boys - Old Town, Chicago IL
Pine Leaf Boys: Crawfish Fest w/ Special Guest: Lucia Micarelli
PLB with sarah Savoy Belgium 2011