Louis Armstrong once said: “All music is folk music. I ain’t never heard no horse sing a song.” If any disc ever deserved the “folk music” label it would have to be Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown’s most recent release, “Back to Bogalusa,” with its incredibly rich variety of American styles.

Essentially, the record is a homage to the blues-based sounds of Louisiana, but much more has been tossed into the musical gumbo to create a unique, down-home flavor. The recipe Brown follows might read like this: Mix together juicy chunks of Cajun, big-band, swing, zydeco, country, funk, folk and bluegrass, then let simmer until the flavors blend.

Born in Louisiana, but coming of age in the nightclubs of Houston, Brown has been recording since the late 1940s. His releases of the past several years have a fire and polish unusual in a performer in his late 70s. 1999’s “American Music, Texas Style” and 1997’s “Gate Swings” showcased the big-band blues style with large horn sections and a jazzier swing. On “Back to Bogalusa,” however, Brown’s vocals, guitar and fiddle are given center stage.

His core group of players, meanwhile, carry him along like a carnival parade. The slide guitar of Sonny Landreth, a phenomenal player in his own right, and the accordion of zydeco master Zachary Richard nestle in tightly beside Brown’s singing and playing to ensure the Cajun integrity of the songs.

A four-piece horn section and backing vocals seamlessly add jazz and funk inflections. The choice of tunes by such native Louisiana songsmiths as Bobby Charles is excellent, but it is Brown’s tight, driving arrangements that make this CD really tasty.

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