What makes great boudin? Not blood, as NPR’s Melissa Block learned after she mistakenly called it “blood sausage” during a musical profile of Feufollet, a hot young Cajun band from Lafayette. So many listeners wrote to correct her that she followed up the next day with an interview about making boudin with Dana Cormier, owner of The Best Stop supermarket in Scott, La., who makes a ton of fresh sausage every day.
Listening to Feufollet took me back to exultant bygone days at the French Quarter Festival when I stood in line on Jackson Square for crayfish boudin and ice-cold beer – Jack’s, of course. Listen for yourself and dream on! Here’s Feufollet at the Bluemoon (February 2008 ):
and at Blackpot Festival (October 2008) with the horn section of “Swingology”; vocalist Anna Laura Edmiston sings Femme l’a dit, a smokey tune resurrected from the Archives of Cajun and Creole Folklore:
What’s the back story on Feufollet? According to NPR Music:
Feufollet translates literally from the French as “crazy fire.” In southwestern Louisiana, it’s used to refer to the will o’ the wisp: the spectral, shifting light seen over the swamps at night. Fiddler and accordionist Chris Stafford explains that the band chose the name because folk tales came up with many different meanings for “wills o’ the wisp.”
“People had no idea what they were,” Stafford says. “They were these balls of fire they’d see in the swamp. And they would make up stories to explain what a feufollet was.”
You don’t have to go to Louisiana, eat purple mescaline, or believe in flying saucers to see that stuff. I’ve conjured it many times in late night Ohio river bottoms where it’s too thick to navigate, too thin to plow.
Encore: Feufollet’s latest CD is Cow Island Hop.
Café Mouffe opens evry Friday ’round 3 p.m. Please drop by for a listen and a chat. Sometimes the embedded videos don’t work here due to bandwidth constraints, but you’ll always find links to video sources in the notes. Try them. If you’re curious about the Mouffe, here’s the original idea behind it’s creation.