A "bon temps" was had by all at Ogden's Jefferson Hall on Thursday, April 26.
The Top of Utah was transformed into the Louisiana party of food, family, dance and music known as a "fais do-do" when Jeffery Broussard & the Creole Cowboys brought their authentic zydeco sound to town.
The back hall of the former church was packed with many cultures, ranging in age from babes-in-arms to the elderly, making a scene looking for all the world like a Louisiana parish on a Saturday night -- a perfect setting for this concert, dance and dinner presented by the Ogden Friends of Acoustic Music.
The night started out with divine cuisine -- barbecue/coleslaw sandwiches, hush puppies and dirty rice courtesy of Ogden's Soul & Bones. Coffee, water and -- to fit the swampy theme, Gatorade -- were included with the meal, with Roosters selling beer and wine for imbibers over 21.
While people chowed down, two-step and waltz lessons were given to the ladies by none other than Broussard and his striking Creole Cowboy lead guitarist, Daniel Sanda. The gents were taught how to do a move or two by Louisiana native and host of KRCL 90.9 FM's Monday Night Red, White and Blues program, Eugenie Hero Jaffe.
After dinner, most of the chairs were moved back from the stage so people could practice their newfound moves, or at least get up and shake their own style of tail feather. Having witnessed local crowds hereabouts, and knowing from past experience that zydeco musicians don't believe themselves to be getting the job done if people keep their seats, I was concerned that there would be too much sitting and not enough dancing.
But quite the opposite was true. Most, if not all, were up for a song or two, packing the rather ample floor for most of the evening with singles and couples both, moving to tunes slow and fast, sung in French and English, driven by Broussard's accordion.
In fact, several enthusiastic couples barely took so much as a water/potty break. One boy of 10 or so was showing off his break-dancing moves, to the delight of the crowd. Other youngsters, from toddlers to shaggy-haired teens, were also clearly enjoying the zydeco music and showing off their steps.
Perhaps most fun to watch on the floor was a man who'd seen at least 80 summers come and go out there moving all night, and making time with all of the young ladies. This fine fellow left several guys young enough to be his great grandsons looking on with envy as, more than once, he left the night's prettiest 20-something beauty through the two-step.
Last night at Jefferson Hall, there was not a doubt that Ogden can fais do-do with the best of them.