Some of the state's most talented musicians recording in collaboration for the "Friends & Legends" of Louisiana album
The Westside Journal : Oct 21, 2018
“The wave of enthusiasm for this new project has been amazing. This CD is going to make history.””
Working from songs written by Lucas Spinosa, several of Louisiana’s most talented and most popular music personalities are collaborating on a compilation CD, “Friends and Legends.”
Some of the most easily recognized names that will be featured on the album include zydecajun creator and king Wayne Toups, renowned and respected bluesman Chris LeBlanc, Grammy nominated Kenny Neal of the prolific blues family, of the and swamp pop favorite Don Rich.
The list continues with Bobby Henderson, Ron Foret of the Foret Tradition, Parker James, Greg Martinez Jason Parfait and Bryan Romano, the son of the late great Buddy Roy.
All of them are staples to the festival and club scenes of Louisiana.
“The stars are aligning,” Spinosa said of the collective project, a concept he and manager Mike David came up with after a return to live music by Lucas with Rougon. The south Louisiana music staple recently released their own album of Spinosa’s originals.
Recently inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame, Spinosa first surfaced on the local music scene as part of the now legendary band The Inn Crowd and later, with his own country music band, Lucas Spinosa and Southern Star.
Southern Star were chosen by Coors Brewing Co., paid the band’s expenses for its inclusion in the beer maker’s Silver Bullet Tour with Tracy Lawrence and Martina McBride.
One of Baton Rouge’s best known keyboardists and vocalists, Spinosa will be “playing” with a new team of musicians, all performing songs written by the Baton Rouge native.
“Some of the songs had already been written and fitted some of the individual stars while some are songs I wrote for one particular one or another,” he said.
After about 10 years of retirement from the music industry, Spinosa decided it was time to return and Rougon was the most natural choice of bands. Rougon recently released “Set Me Free,” the first collection exclusively comprised of Spinosa originals.
“Bandleader Bryan Romano had been calling from time to time to say he was in need of a keyboard player for this gig or that and I kept telling him I was retired,” Spinosa said. He explained the decision to return to performing was in large part because of advice he received from one of his daughters.
One night, while Spinosa was sitting at the baby grand piano his father gave him, his daughter Lucia tried to tell him he needed to go back to his roots, back to live performances.
“Dad, it’s time for you to start playing again,” he says she told him. “I told her I never stopped. I’m sitting here at my piano and writing.”
“She said, ‘No, it’s time for you to start playing live again,’” Lucia told him. “You need to record your songs, Dad, because if you don’t, they’re just going to sit in your book.”
Spinosa showed the “book” she was talking about, a thick notebook filled with the lyrics to well over 100 songs, but very little of the melodies. Those, he says, are kept in his mind.
“Everybody is really connecting with the songs and our recording sessions are really going well,” Spinosa said.
“This next CD is going to be mixed and mastered by Grammy winner Tony Daigle,” he said, with engineering assistance from Bryan Brignac.
Some of the new tunes that will be included on the album are cowritten by Billy Henderson.
“The addition of Billy to the new album is phenomenal evidence of the ‘stars are aligning’ philosophy we’ve been talking about,” Spinosa said.
A “big-time Nashville songwriter” and a member of the Alabama Music Hall of Fame, Henderson has written hits for Travis Tritt, Jason Aldean, Mindy McCready, Jerry Reed and Billy Ray Cyrus are on a list of hitmakers with whom he’s worked.
“The wave of enthusiasm for this new project has been amazing,” David said. “This CD is going to make history.”
Writer: Tommy Comeaux