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World Music CD Reviews North American

VARIOUS ARTISTS

By James Rodgers
Published March 3, 2006

THE ROUGH GUIDE TO THE MUSIC OF LOUISIANA
World Music Network

Louisiana is one of the most musically diverse states in the country, so a single-disc compilation is only going to skim the surface. That said, The Rough Guide To The Music Of Louisiana skims better than most. These 15 tracks cover jazz, blues, Cajun, zydeco, gospel, early country, and rock and roll, each a style deserving of a CD all its own. But no matter how strong a collection this is, it barely gets your toes wet. Omitting Louis Armstrong or the Neville Brothers from a disc highlighting Louisiana almost seems blasphemous. Yet, showcasing lesser-known artists like Champion Jack Dupree and Dr. Michael White helps to compensate for the omissions. As with all Rough Guide collections, this is only a dip into the water. Hopefully, it will tempt listeners to dive into the very deep, very satisfying lake of Louisiana music.