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About Dennis McGee

Dennis McGee was one of Cajun music's most influential fiddlers. Although he only recorded for a brief five years (1929 to 1934), McGee remained an inspiration for Cajun musicians through his Acadienne festival performances and his large repertoire, which included hundreds of old Cajun songs.

McGee's first fiddle was a gift from a cousin. After spending two days in his room teaching himself to play, McGee had mastered two songs. Within six months, McGee was playing for house parties throughout southwest Louisiana.

McGee and second fiddler Sady Courville traveled to New Orleans in March and October 1929 to record a number of singles, including his original compositions "Madame Young Donnez Moi Votre (Madame Young, Give Me Your Sweetest)," "Mon Chere Bebe Creole (My Creole Sweet Mama)" and "The Happy One-Step." During subsequent recording sessions, McGee was accompanied by fiddlers Ernest Fruge and Amedee Ardoin.

Although he learned to play accordion and played the squeezebox during several early dances, the fiddle remained McGee's prime instrument. A highly rhythmic player, McGee was known for his use of seven different tunings and his mastery of a lengthy list of dance styles. ~ Craig Harris

Bayou Marron, LA
Jan 26, 1893

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