Posts Tagged With: Fred’s Lounge

A Change Of Pace…

The motorhome is now parked at Thousand Trails Thunderbird RV Resort along the bank of the Skykomish River in Monroe, Washington. I’ve been here a number of times over the past years and always enjoy it here. I’ll depart from here tomorrow..

I’m just hanging out taking maximum advantage of my Thousand Trails membership and very agreeable weather.

Mary’s personal to-do list plate, which can only be handled by herself, continues to over-flow. I’ll next likely see her when I arrive at her home in mid-October. A friend recently expressed a concern about the status of our relationship. Not to worry…it continues to function per our original agreement when we met in October, 2008. That is…I remain on the road and she will join me when her other life allows. We talk every day on the phone…sometimes more than once. It’s just the way life is!


Today…A change of pace…

Directly below you will see an email I received yesterday. Gallop Magazine is published in Sweden. A few weeks back they requested permission to use one of my photos (Fred’s Lounge in Mamou, Louisiana).

Being of 100% French-Canadian heritage, I also worked as a teenager as a hot-walker and groom at three different race tracks in New England…I found this to be a very well done article. I hope you enjoy it…

Press the download button to read the article…

Sorry, but I just have been informed copyright does not allow me to do this…so, I’ve taken it away!

Here’s the photo I sent them…


Oh well, one-half a photo is better than none.  🙂

It’s fun to see one of my photos in another publication which has happened several times in the past.

To read my blog entry about Fred’s Lounge, click this link…

I hope you enjoyed today’s change of pace.

Yesterday was mostly sunny and 62 degrees. Forecast for today is mostly sunny and 66 degrees.

Enjoying nice weather is another joy in the life of a full-time RVer!

The red dot on the below map shows my approximate location in the State of Washington. You may double left-click the map to make it larger…



Enjoying 65-75 degree temperatures with low humidity most of the year is a primary joy in the RVing lifestyle!

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving”…Albert Einstein





My current travel rig is a 2006 Fleetwood 26′ Class A Motorhome and a towed 1986 Ford Bronco II, Eddie Bauer Model. This photo was taken in the desert at Slab City near Niland, California…



On October 27, 2012, I created a two-minute video titled America The Beautiful. The music America The Beautiful is by Christopher W. French. The photos, which I randomly selected, are from the states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Tennessee, Washington and West Virginia (not shown in that order)…are mine. Yup, That’s me standing in front of the Post Office in Luckenbach, Texas…Y’all!

Click this link to start the video. Make sure you have your speakers turned on and go to full screen asap.

If you would like to see my YouTube videos, click this link…

There are more than 600 photo albums in my Picasa Web Albums File. To gain access, you simply have to click this link…

If you have not checked out my Ramblin Man’s Photos Blog, you can do so by clicking this link…

For more information about my books, click this link:

All original works copyrighted – Jim Jaillet -2015

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Folk Music has an honored place in the music world, but somehow, Swamp Pop is ignored. It came up out of Southern Louisiana, where it was born, and spread unevenly in popularity all over the U.S. The flags show in the millions. As a teen in California I remember many of the songs I saw and heard in the Swamp Pop Music Museum in Ville Platte. Great memories and traditions. I just didn’t know much about the individuals and how it developed.

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French Cajuns had some strange-sounding words and names. Tongue twisters for radio announcers, so they developed suitable compilations of their names, shortened, easy. There was also some hesitation from the performers because of their unique language, a blending of English and French and some African lingo thrown in. It suited the community from which it sprung and grew but they were punished for it when they attended school.

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Some of these great performers were on the charts along with Elvis Presley. I just look at Dale and Grace and hear “I’m leaving it all up to decide, whatcha gonna do…”

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“Graduation Night”  TK Hulin. I did not remember his name until I came here. They have a huge collection of 45’s you can listen to.

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They sell out a Swamp Pop Reunion every year here in Ville Platte. Wish we had made it. All the living greats return. I hope PBS revives their music like they have the old rock n’ roll groups and folk singers. I’m going to call Sacramento PBS and see if they have plans to do it and point them to Southern Louisiana, the berceau of Swamp Pop.

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They have artifacts and autographs and other things to enjoy. It is a small museum. But, it is the music that you remember.  Freddy Fenders, “Until The Last Teardrop Falls..” Warren Storm’s “Wasted Days and Wasted Nights”. Tommy Mc Clain’s, “Sweet Dreams.”  Such fun.

Wikipedia has an in-depth  article on the origins of Swamp Pop (above).

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We moved on to Mamou to catch Fred’s Lounge in the morning. Jim  just happened to meet Tauntie Sue coming out the back door. Jim asked if it was okay to park on the side street. She said,”No, come park at my house, I just live down the street. I can hook you up with power.”

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She is such a sweet and generous soul. We visited Fred’s Lounge in 2010 and Sue was still tending bar in the lounge she and her husband opened in 1946. Fred died in 1992 and Sue has kept it going for all day Saturday, drinking and dancing to a live Cajun band that is broadcast live on radio.  She told us she quit tending bar, but she goes every Saturday, sets up and enjoys the music and the patrons. The popularity of the place started when Charles Kuralt stopped there and made a segment  about the bar for his television show. It has grown and grown ever since.

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This historical plaque is posted on the building.

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Jim’s visited Mamou several times but had never walked around the town. We found a square put up by the local rotary club, honoring the Cajun Music Capital of the World.

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A huge mural lines one wall of the square. This is a wedding scene. I love the little boy clacking spoons to the music on the porch. Very realistic beginnings for some Cajun musicians. Making the table in the yard  ready for the food to follow. (You can double-click pictures to make them larger.)

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And, on that same wall, twelve people honored for promoting and identifying the passion and spirit of Cajun music that have made Mamou the Cajun Music Capital of the World. I tell you, Southern Louisiana  is all about good music and good food and friendly people. Taunte Sue is the only woman on the wall.

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We walked Main St., which isn’t very long. Manuel’s Bar across the street from Fred’s Lounge started the same year, 1946. We talked to the son of the original owner who we met on the street. This sign was on their window. I liked the “drama” part.

Tauntie Sue’s rules are No Swearing, No Fights, No dancing on the tables. We stayed all day last time, and everyone danced, drank, ate from the jambalaya cooked up out back by some volunteers, and had a great time. No one got drunk and out of line. Tauntie Sue suggested a great restaurant, right across from her Lounge. But, they weren’t open when we were hungriest and we ate Tasso stew at home instead. And some shrimp with Jack Miller’s cocktail sauce for an appetizer. Good stuff!

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Mamou, Louisiana – The Cajun Music Capital Of The World!

Yesterday we drove the motorhome the about 25 miles from Chicot State Park to Mamou, Louisiana…the Cajun Music Capital Of The World!

Along the way we stopped in Ville Platte at the Swamp Pop Music Museum which is only open on Fridays and Saturdays.

Swamp pop is a musical genre indigenous to the Acadiana region of south Louisiana and an adjoining section of southeast Texas. Created in the 1950s and early 1960s by teenaged Cajuns and black Creoles, it combines New Orleans-style rhythm and blues, country and western, and traditional French Louisiana musical influences.

To read more about Swamp Pop Music, just click this Wikipedia link…

Here are some photos that I took…

As always you may left click upon an image to see an enlarged view and then click once again to see an even larger view…







The next stop is unusual for us as it is a repeat. That usually does not happen. We were here in 2010 and had a ball! As long as we are in the area…we just had to come back. Over the years…I believe this is my fourth visit.

Upon arrival in Mamou we pulled the motorhome alongside of Fred’s Lounge – The Cajun Music Capital of the World! Fred’s is only open on Saturday’s from 7:30 AM to 2:00 PM. We lucked with our timing as Taunte (aunt in French) Sue was just coming out of the back door. Luckily she remembered me from my previous visits. Asking if we could park overnight where we were…she said no…she had a better spot at another of her properties about one block away. We followed her and the below photo shows our parking location complete with 30 amp electrical hookup…


As usual, here’s the dinette window view…


Here’s Mary with Taunte Sue…


After getting settled in, we took a walk to the Cajun Music Plaza…directly across the street from Fred’s Lounge…




On the same wall is the Cajun Wall Of Fame…


Did you notice that of the 12 people shown…only one is a woman? Nonetheless than Taunte Sue! She has lived all of her 82 years in Mamou…


Taunte Sue was married to Fred Tate…of Fred’s Lounge which you can read about by clicking this link…

She recently retired after 55 years working there. You can read about her career by clicking this link…—nephews-nieces–knew-her-rules

We’ve got to leave shortly as Fred’s opens its doors at 7:30 AM and we want to be first in the line. The drinking starts and by 8:00 AM the place is packed by time the band starts playing at 8:00 AM…nonstop until 1:30 PM. I’ll have a Miller Lite…Thanks!

We’ll share with you our adventures of this morning in tomorrow’s Blog posting.

Enjoying local partying spots is another joy in the life of a full-time RVer!

The red dot on the below map shows our approximate location in the State of Louisiana. You may double left-click the map to make it larger…


Enjoying 65-75 degree temperatures most of the year is a primary joy in the RVing lifestyle!

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving”…Albert Einstein


If you have not checked out my Ramblin Man’s Photos Blog, you can do so by clicking this link…

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2013
For more information about my three books, click this link:

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I’ve spent the last couple days catching up on some badly needed cleaning, like window washing and yard work. But, family and friends keep reminding me its my birthday. E-cards, Facebook greetings, a delightful rap from grandsons, Owen and Theo, with about 70 ways to say and spell and write 70;  A call from the youngest grandson, Austin before he headed off to school; a hep best wishes from one headed off to college, hey! There are benefits to being an old bag. My computer got robbed of its mechanics yesterday and I’m really happy that its fixed and that I can get on it and make it work. Definitely makes for a happy birthday. But, I’ve had a happy year and thought I’d look back at some of the favorite places I’ve been this past year. I left home in January, 2010.

I met long time friend Sandee Voges at Biosphere in Tuscon, Arizona in January. A very unusual and fascinating place to visit.
Chiracahua National Monument was one of my favorite places in Arizona as well.

Jim Jones In Luckenbach, Texas sang a song about his lost love by the name of Mary. He dedicated it to me when he found out my name. An unusual, off the beaten path kind of place. Homey and wonderful, also unforgettable.

One of the worlds most fun places, Fred’s Bar in Mamou, Louisiana. Jim and I shared a dish of gumbo made by a couple of volunteers out behind the bar.

Mardi Gras was an unforgettable, exciting experience. I still have the beads collected there as part of the curtains on the motor home.

The cold, cold boat ride to Pilot Town. That place, destroyed by Katrina, still haunts me, especially now with the spill in the gulf.
I began to sift through pictures and so many memories of the good times came flooding in and I realized I couldn’t continue because there were so many wonderful places and experiences, I just can’t put them in one blog. I never expected to be a gypsy in my golden years, but I highly recommend it.

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Laissez les bon temps rouler, a greeting you hear all over Cajun country. It means let the good times roll, and they do at Fred’s Lounge in Mamou, 10 miles out of Eunice. We arrived by 7:30 in order to get a seat when the bar opened at 8 A.M. Fred’s is only open Saturdays with live music, drinking and dancing. The two couples below were the early birds along with Jim and I. Calvin Daigle, standing closest, brought breakfast from Charlies Place around the corner, a heaping pile of boudin, (boydan) in a piece of butcher paper along with a paper bag of cracklins. The still warm sausage, slightly spicy with a soft texture more like stuffing than meat was wonderful. I believe it had rice in it. The cracklins were inch thick pieces of bacon fried crisp, unlike any cracklins I ever tasted. Calvin and his wife Nonie, (next to the wall,) are regulars at Fred’s. Sally and Mike Wenckus are from Golf, Ill.
Before the musicians had set up to play, a crew of guys out back iced down beer to keep the refrigerators inside full. A couple of guys set up a pot to make jambalaya. Some one asked what time it would be ready? “Oh, somewhere between 9 and 2, he claimed.” No charge for the jambalaya. Its part of the “experience.” We walked out back and claimed a heaping bowl full around noon. Good stuff.

Getting the meat started for the jambalaya.
Nonie & Cal started the dancing before it got crowded. The Cajun musicians were Scotty on Accordion, Jason on Violin, Ray on drums, who also sang, and Smiley on guitar. No fanfare or introductions, Nonie told me their names because she knows them all. They just play, with no breaks from 9 until 2. Sometimes longer. The music is broadcast live  from Freds and a different group plays each Saturday.

After a couple hours the crowd looked like this. Then, later, you couldn’t get back far enough to take a picture. It was necessary to slide between people. I slid by this one guy with a clothes pin and money attached to his beads. He told me it was too crowded to get his money out of his pocket so he carries it “up-front.” Everyone is friendly and polite. No cross words spoken or drunken behavior evident, although the rules are, no standing on the jukebox, bar, or tables. And no kissing on the lips. Leon, in the striped shirt above, told me he kissed his girlfriend and owner,  Tante Sue,  wapped him on the head with her “no kissing” stick.
These two out-of-town women have been friends for 55 years. The Justice Of The Peace, on the left, offered to marry Jim and I, and rescind it for no extra charge, but we declined.
Tante Sue keeps the whole shebang running. Between slapping beers on the bar, counting change, cleaning up a cans, bottles and glasses, she is known to break into dance with the music while playing the accordion on her shirt, reach in her holster for some “Hot Damn”, take a slug and yell “Quinta!” (which means Who Dat?) In fact, she sometimes tastes a new pint of Hot Damn before handing it over to the customer.
This couple pilgrimage to Fred’s twice a year. She once lived in Santa Barbara, CA for four years but couldn’t stay away from Louisiana. They have Targil’s Spices, you can order on line. Everyone is rooting for love-him-or-hate-him Shockey and the Saints, and gearing up for Mardi Gras.

I met Mikell above in line for the bathroom. She is almost ready for Mardi Gras and we coined some folksy wisdom, no matter where you are, be it fancy or folksy, women have to wait in line for the bathroom.
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