Earlier today, Matt Ranson, owner of Gotta Grove Productions, announced the creation of CALM or the Coalition of Alexandria’s Live Music.

During the past six months, Ranson has become a leading voice in Alexandria’s music community, bringing in award-winning acts from all over the country and promoting our local scene throughout the region. Ranson hopes that CALM will help spread awareness of Alexandria’s emerging music scene and believes that CALM will enable other music enthusiasts to collaborate on attracting larger musical acts to Alexandria.

Ranson can be contacted via Myspace at http://www.myspace.com/gottagrooveproductions.

16 thoughts

  1. How much local music information do you know? Can you name the local musicians who have played with: Loretta Lynn, Mel Tillis, Brooks & Dunn, Marty Stewart,Rascal Flatts, or can you name the local recording studio at which Leeanne Rymes used? Can you name the people of Cenla who are in the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame? Which local bands have been playing together for the longest?

  2. Leanne Rymes did some Star Search demos at David Praett’s studio here in Alexandria, which was also visited by the 80’s group Atlantic Star. John Johnson of Tioga was, until recently, the fiddle player with Rascal Flatts. Junior Dunlap, of Effie, and his uncle, were both piano palyers for Loretta Lynn. Dan Davis, of Poland, was bass player player for Mel Tillis, Pam Tillis and Marty Stuart. In fact, Dan had an entry at number 48 in the country charts. Leon Medica was in the 70’s group, Louisiana’s La Roux, which had a hit with New Orleans Ladies. And Danny Milner, of Pineville, who was the Bass player and Band leader for Brooks and Dunn for years.
    The Dunlap Brothers, from Effie, are in the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame. The local band, The Dots, have continually played around Louisiana, since the late 1970’s or early 1980’s.

  3. excellent knowledge!(thanks Mr. Henry) we have a rich musical history here in CenLa that proves the worth of growing and supporting a live music scene. That is what CALM is all about.

  4. “does alexandria have a certain type or style of music to call its own? for instance new orleans and memphis have jazz and the blues, seattle has grunge etc”

    This is a great question..Definately something CALM should address.

  5. If we have a musical style for Cenla, I’d say it’s much like every other part of our culture — a mixture of everything around us. Just go to any local festival and you’ll hear a mix of Zydeco, Cajun, Country, Gospel, Blues, and Swamp Hop Rock. I played in a big band in Alexandria for about 12 years. Then there’s the symphony, orchestra, the various musical theatre companies, Cenla Symphonic, and the local college groups.

    I’ve also begun to notice that Alexandria has a really decent emerging hip-hop scene. Listen to 98.7. They have a local artist show sometimes and the local artists are getting close to the level of New Orleans and Atlanta in this genre.

    One thing that would be of great support to local musicians and to propagating more area bands would be to adopt the model of Lafayette where they have open concerts and block parties in their downtown area. It’s a free event, showcases local talent, and get’s people out downtown. Plus, it helps musicians market themselves.

    I’d vote for using it as a form of rebirth for Cenlabration. I think it’s a shame that event died. It’s the first festival I can remember going to as a child. I think a once or twice a week event would be much more in keeping with the intent and spirit of Cenlabration as a celabration of everything Cenla.

  6. There was a band that I used to see every chance I could that Dan Milner played bass in. On keyboards we had Steve Conn who went on to play with James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt and Kenny Loggins. Then on lead guitar they had Sonny Landreth who Eric Clapton said was one of the best musicians on the planet. He plays lead guitar for Jimmy Buffett.

    I never became famous but I used to play and sing at Grandma’s Catfish House and The Triad Restaurant, oh, and The Chalet Lounge. My name’s Frank Boyd. I left in 1980 and only came back twice.

  7. Junior Dunlap of Effie Was not a player for Loretta Lynn His uncle Gene Dunlap aka my uncle was the player for Loretta Lynn who retired around 2 years ago, My dad aka Junior dunlap of effie was the piano player for Crystal Gale in 1978

  8. Also the comment about The Dunlap Brothers is true, They consist of Clayson Dunlap Sr. (Smiley) Rosco Dunlap, Claud Dunlap, Gene Dunlap, and Marian Dunlap. Clayson Dunlap is my Grandpa.

  9. commenting on the need of an outdoor event in Alexandria that showcases mainstream and local talent weekly and how it can be funded. I purpose Cenla Youth Academy creating jobs for educators, youth and the general public. You can view a copy of the business plan for our non-profit organization at globalyouthsupport.org.
    This website is being constructed to raise funds to do just that.

  10. Commenting of the local musicians that have been inducted to the Louisiana hall of Fame. My Husband Jason Todd Johnson and his grandfather Ambrose Williamson Sr. both of Lecompte, La. was inducted in April 2000 with Jay Chevalier and the Louisiana Longshots. Jason is a professional drummer and has played for Trini Triggs and Rhett Akins.

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