Steve Riley & The Mamou Playboys

Released in 2016

DownBeat Four-Stars Review




What’s that? Christmas tunes from Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys? You got it! The boys are back covering a unique combination of holiday tunes from the likes of George Harrison, to Buck Owens, to Jim Cox.

Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys began over twenty five years ago with a reputation for excellence. Their stunningly clean and cohesive performance of Cajun French music from the backwaters of Southwest Louisiana propelled them into the world music limelight early on, and by their third release, Trace of Time, had garnered them a Grammy nomination in the worldwide field of traditional folk music, another in 2004 for Bon Reve, in 2009 for Live at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and again in 2011 for Grand Isle.

Track Listing:

1. Ding Dong (George Harrison) 3:37

2. Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home!) (Ellie Greenwich, Jeff Barry and Phil Spector) 3:14

3. All I Want For Christmas, Dear, Is You (Buck Owens, Don Rich) 3:14

4. Blue Christmas (Billy Hayes, Jay Johnson) 3:42

5. Louisiana Christmas Day (Jim Cox) 4:01

6. Please Come Home For Christmas (Charles Brown, Gene Redd) 3:01

7. Party At The Holiday, All Night Long! (Stephen C. Lafleur) 4:16


Steve Riley: accordion, vocals, sleigh bells

Kevin Wimmer: fiddles

Sam Broussard: guitars

Kevin Dugas: drums

Brazos Huval: bass

Danny DeVillier: chimes

Eric Adcock: piano & b3

Wayne Toups: vocals

Melete Terry: vocals

Alena Savoy: vocals

Children Singers (Will Louviere, Mary Harris, Gabrielle Leblanc, Burke Riley): vocals

Paul “Bird” Edwards: rubboard

Produced and Mixed by Joel Savoy, Sam Broussard, Steve Riley

Recorded by Joel Savoy

Artwork: Sadie Johnson

Design: Phillip LaFargue II

Photography by Daniel Sanda


Pay attention to the Cajun band Steve Riley & The Mamou Playboys, whose Party At The Holiday, All Night Long! is replete with high-spirited bayou sounds ideal for two-stepping dancers. Riley’s singing and accordion work allow him to express his innate admiration for departed greats Clifton Chenier and Buckwheat Zydeco. Not inclined to write his own holiday songs, Riley freshens up interesting songs from the r&b and pop past. These tunes often dwell on a protagonist who is apart from a loved one during the holiday season, but revelry from the band—influenced by rock and country music as well as zydeco—trumps the melancholy of the lyrics. A clear highlight is “Louisiana Christmas Day,” drawing from Aaron Neville’s version and acknowledging traditional fiddle-accordion virtues. Scrooge alert: A version of George Harrison’s “Ding Dong, Ding Dong”—with kid singers helping out—is hellishly repetitious, and Charles Brown’s great “Please Come Home For Christmas” has unconvincing guest vocalist Wayne Toups losing his way.

Frank-John Hadley (DownBeat)