Friday, October 13, 2017

"Jolie Blonde" - Eddie Shuler

The murky early days of the Goldband have always been the least documented. Goldband initially served mostly as a vanity label for Eddie Shuler and his western band, the Reveliers -- an excellent group that went toe-to-toe with Cliff Bruner, Leo Soileau, Harry Choates, the Hackberry Ramblers, and the other top Gulf Coast swing bands of the time. Many of Eddie's singles are solid western swing, Cajun, and country efforts comparable to anything else coming out in those genres at the time.1

Shuler's western swing band would play at the same Louisiana dance halls that popular Cajun musicians frequented every night.  It wouldn't be long after the popularization of regional Cajun music he would realize it was time to capitalize on the market.  Watching the success of Harry Choates' "Jole Blon" in 1946, Eddie used the opportunity to get his band to cover the song "Jolie Blonde" (#1012) with his 3rd pressing in either very late 1946 or 1947.  According to author Ryan Brasseaux, Shuler and his All-Star Reveliers recorded the first post-Choates Cajun adaptation of "Jole Blon".2 

Jolie blonde, si tu croyais, 

I(l) y avait juste toi dedans le pays. 

I(l) y a pas juste toi dedans le pays, oui, 

Jolie blonde, mais moi, je peux avoir?

I(l) y a juste toi, moi je voudrais pour me marier.

Jolie blonde, moi j'connais,
Oui, mourir c’était pas rien,
J'ai quitté dedans la terre,
Aussi longtemps, oui, mais, jolie fille, 
Quel espoir et quel avenir j'peux avoir?
Crowley Daily Signal
Aug 16, 1949

Eddie Shuler's vocalist was Frankie "Tee Tee" Mailhes who sang the song as close to the Choates recording as possible.  Eddie had fond thoughts of Harry's song and his early recording:
Harry Choates was one of them overnight sensations. He went and cut that “Jole Blon” thing... I thought Choates was a real good fiddle player. He had a charisma about him that was outstanding.1 

Pretty blond, if you believe,
It was just you over there in the countryside,
It's not just you over there in the countryside, yeh,
Pretty blonde, well, what can I have?
It's just you over there, I would like to marry.

Pretty blond, I know,
Yeh, dying, it's nothing,
I'm left in the dirt,
So long, yeh, well, pretty girl,
What hope and what future can I have?

Most of the Cajun songs that Eddie Shuler could record with his Reveliers ended up going nowhere.  He struggled getting his group to gain any popular traction. Eddie's #1012 label used the same label and plant as maroon version of #1011.  It would be the last logo with the motto "Everyone A Treat".

  2. Cajun Breakdown: The Emergence of an American-Made Music By Ryan Andre Brasseaux
  3. Lyrics by Stephane F
Release Info:
A Mes Cinquantes Sous (My Fifty Cents) | Goldband 1012
B Jolie Blonde (Pretty Blonde) | Goldband 1012

Jole Blon - 23 Artists One Theme (Bear, 2002)

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