It’s official. Lafayette Cajun rockers Lost Bayou Ramblers are now Grammy certified. Last week, the band took home two Best of the Beat awards (Best Cajun Artist, Best Cajun Album). Last night, they proved themselves on a national scale. The band’s 2017 album Kalenda won the Grammy for Best Regional Roots Music Album, overcoming a strong pool of nominees that also included fellow Best of the Beat double-winners Dwayne Dopsie and the Zydeco Hellraisers (Best Zydeco Artist, Best Zydeco Album).
It’s been a bittersweet week for LBR fans. On Thursday, Jan. 24, the band announced via Facebook that they would be taking an indefinite hiatus after this summer season. “After almost 20 years of non-stop touring, recording, and rambling, we’ve decided it’s time for a little break,” their post read. “It’s been an amazing journey since our beginning in 1999, when Andre and Louis took the first gig offer to play with family and friends at a small café in Lafayette. Neither of them could have imagined that the band would take them to so many amazing places, playing on stages from lumberjack bars in California, to dinner clubs north of the arctic circle when the sun never sets. We have made it through countless van breakdowns, cracked engines, hurricanes, and dodged tornadoes, floods, and snow storms, and always managed to get thru the rough patches and make it on stage to do what we love: play music.”
The Grammy win might serve to postpone the hiatus, though. “We may have to back it up until Halloween,” fidler Louis Michot told the Lafayette-based Daily Advertiser. “We’re going to see.”
The Best Regional Roots Music Album has only existed for seven years, and Louisiana natives have already taken home six grammophones in the category. Kalenda’s win also marks the 12th for Best of the Beat winners Dockside Studios (Best Recording Studio). LBR may have been Louisiana’s only 2018 Grammy winner, but New Orleans native Jon Batiste also came out on top, performing a powerful tribute to Chuck Berry and Fats Domino with his Stay Human drummer Joe Saylor and blues rock superstar Gary Clark Jr. Check out some footage from his performance below: