Thursday, Friday fair performers announced

Published 3:41 am Saturday, July 27, 2019

Thursday and Friday evenings at the Washington Parish Free Fair are arguably two of the most exciting nights of the week for the main stage. This year’s scheduled entertainment will be sure to maintain this tradition with Joe Nichols headlining Thursday, Oct. 17, following opening act Nashville South. Friday, Oct. 18 will be a feature Rockin’ Dopsie at 8:30 p.m. following 4 Unplugged and crowd favorite The Chee Weez.

Nashville South is a rocking country band from New Orleans and the surrounding region that has established a distinguished history in the short time they have been together. The live country band has progressed steadily since their beginning in 2014. This party band’s musical sound is that of the newer rocking country with some of the true classics that could never be forgotten. This is due to the collaborative playing style of each individual talent in the group. Nashville South will take the stage at 7 p.m.

Joe Nichols has come “full circle” with his latest project Never Gets Old. The theme of the record is based on Nichols’ desire to get back to where it all began and get back to where the Arkansas native’s passion for music began.

From 2002’s Man With a Memory on, Nichols harnessed that passion as a steady hit maker, racking up six Number Ones and eight Top 10s, including chart-topping modern classics like “Brokenheartsville” and “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off.” He’s a four-time Grammy nominee, an ACM, Billboard, CMA, and CMT Award winner, and his last album offering, Crickets, kept the success going, sending both “Yeah” and “Sunny and 75” to Platinum-certified Number One status.

What Nichols loves has always been obvious. Growing up he was pulled in by the realness of singers like Merle Haggard and Marty Robbins, Don Williams, Keith Whitley and George Strait, and that connection would inform his whole career. Even now with Never Gets Old, he’s happy to go against the grain with content that will last a lot longer than today’s typical country record. Nichols will appear on the main stage at 8:30 p.m.

Friday’s entertainment line-up offers a change-of-pace from pure country with 4 Unplugged, a band for all occasions that has been voted the Northshore’s best party band 11 times. Four Unplugged started back in 1996 as a four-piece acoustic group that became popular for performing their own versions of sixties and seventies classics. It wasn’t too long before the loyal following that developed (known as The Fourheads) convinced the band to “crank it up a notch.” In 1999, they added bass and drums and the band has flourished into one of the most in-demand party bands in the area. They will “get the party started” on Friday, Oct. 18 at 6 p.m.

Following 4 Unplugged is another area favorite, The Chee Weez, a five-piece cover/show band that specializes in making sure you have a great time and leave with a smile. With an ever-expanding stage show including lights and pyro, to the off-the-cuff antics, you never know what you’ll see next at a Chee-Weez show! Fair-goers can see the Chee Weez at 7 p.m.

The final act on Friday night is a Louisiana legend, Rockin Dopsie and the Zydeco Twisters.

Zydeco music is a bubbling, melodic gumbo concocted from Cajun/Acadian music, Afro-Caribbean rhythms and melodies, and blues. Over the past few years, this funky and highly danceable music has broken out of its Southern Louisiana breeding ground to enjoy widespread popularity throughout the world.

Rockin’ Dopsie Jr. and The Zydeco Twisters are the greatest living practitioners of this music. Dopsie presents zydeco with the conviction and authenticity of its rich heritage. His earliest musical memories are of his father’s accordion playing. Dopsie was given a basic accordion by his father at the age of nine. He taught himself to play, as had his father, by listening to and playing along with the radio.

Besides having performed extensively on their own tours, the band has shared the stage with Tina Turner, Bonnie Raitt, BB King, The Neville Brothers, Dr. John, and Jimmy Buffet. The band has also recorded with Paul Simon, Cindy Lauper and Bob Dylan.

Rockin’ Dopsie Jr. and The Zydeco Twisters, still referred to as “Zydeco’s Royal Family,” have performed in Australia, Italy, France, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, and many other countries as well as throughout the United States. They have appeared at the most prestigious music festivals and fairs at home and abroad.

Dopsie really heats things up whenever he and the band perform. Above all else, they create a high-energy, audience participation, dance ‘til you drop, dynamic show. It all begins when you hear, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Rockin’ Dopsie Jr. and The Zydeco Twisters!”