known as the Ragin Cajun, is considered by most to be the king
of the fiddle players. Since his early days on a Louisiana
bayou, he still takes a fiddle beyond what most people think
possible. Kershaw, with the energy of a nuclear bomb,
plays so incredibly fast that clouds of rosin soar from his
horse hair bow, giving the impression that it is smoking!
Often, he will
wear out two or three bows per song - playing, dancing and
singing at the same time. Mastering over 20 instruments,
many of Doug's peers, including the great Jimmy C. Newman,
consider him as the best musician, singer, songwriter and
performer to ever come out of southwest Louisiana.
Kershaw, a key
player in the promotion and revival of the formerly disappearing
Cajun Culture, was born in Tiel Ridge, Cameron Parish,
Louisiana, an island just off the Gulf of Mexico on January 24,
1936 to Rita and Jack Kershaw (...they call my mama Rita and my
daddy Jack...) Doug is the second of four sons (Ed, Doug, Nelson
(Pee Wee) and Russell (Rusty).
This is the heart
of Cajun country, where French, not English is the native
tongue. Kershaw has taken his heritage worldwide
with his infectious, foot-stomping sound, making Cajun music as
popular as many other forms of music.
In the 1960's,
Doug made his first network television appearance on the
premier, "Johnny Cash Show." This
performance turned millions of people on to his talents, among
them, Warner Brothers Records, with whom he signed a long-term
recording contract. Kershaw's many recordings have been
steady sellers, not only with country audiences, but spanning
Songs such as
"Diggy Diggy Lo," "Cajun Joe," and
"Rita Put Your Black Shoes On," are familiar tunes to
Doug Kershaw fans, but none of his works reached the fame of his
1961autobiographical recording of one of the many songs he
wrote, "Louisiana Man," which immortalized his
family and sold millions of copies over the years. In 1969,
"Louisiana Man" was the first song broadcast
back to earth from the moon by the Apollo 12 Mission.
spite of his successful and colorful career, Kershaw takes his
Cajun heritage seriously. Often, he sings in French,
lyrics and melodies learned during his childhood. Doug loves to
perform and makes his concerts fun and enjoyable for his
audience. He is very personable, and remembers his fans, often
making himself available after a performance to talk to them.
With all his life
feats, no one knows what other monumental achievements he will
master in his lifetime. Doug Kershaw is truly a master
performer, musician, songwriter and a legend.
On the personal
side, Doug and Pam Kershaw were married on June 21, 1975 at the
Astro Dome. They were married before the game and Doug gave a
concert after the game! Doug has 5 sons (Douglas, Victor,
Zachary, Tyler and Eli (Elijah) and two grandsons. (His
son Tyler is the drummer in the band). All his sons
are musically talented like their father.
Doug is presently
writing his autobiography. He has finished recording two new
albums. One is in French - "Two Step
Fever" - (and includes a duet with Michael Doucet). The
other album was recorded with Doug and a lot of Lousiana
Artists, including Frankie Ford of "Sea Cruise" fame.