For 59 years, Richard’s Club on Highway 190 near Lawtell was
ground zero for the Creole/zydeco music scene. The legendary dance hall, built by
Eddie Richard in the 1940s, originally booked touring R&B acts traveling
Richard’s has been dormant since 2006, when the dilapidating building shut its doors due to dwindling business. Two years later, new owner Michael DeClouet is re-opening the dancehall, now renamed the Zydeco Hall of Fame. DeClouet bought Richard’s soon after it shut down and has since given the building a basic and much needed face-lift. DeClouet stresses the building maintains it’s original character; he's kept the small wooden tables and old 1950s bucket chairs, and there’s still no air conditioning. The club expects to be back in full swing tonight, anticipating a packed house for its grand re-opening weekend. Chris Ardoin & NuStep kick things off tonight. Saturday features Keith Frank & the Soileau Zydeco Band. Sunday is the Old Time Jam Session, from 6-10 p.m. with special guests including Roy Carrier, Willis Prudhomme, Lawrence Blaque Ardoin, Preston Frank and Nathan Williams.
Check out the new website for the Zydeco Hall of Fame.