People have been asking me, “What is ‘Baja Louisiana,’ and why did you choose that as the name for your new album?” The answer is twofold, actually.
The first reason: I grew up in a place called Port Acres, which is part of Port Arthur, Texas. Port Arthur is in the heart of Southeast Texas, in the Texas Gulf Coast area, not far from the Louisiana border. Southeast Texas features a heavy dose of Cajun people, which is part of my heritage. In fact, some studies have shown that this area of Texas has more Cajuns per capita than the Acadiana region of South Louisiana, home of many of my Cajun relatives.
In my time I’ve heard Southeast Texas referred to by several nicknames, all giving a nod to our Cajun heritage that spilled over from Louisiana. One of them was “Baja Louisiana,” probably a comparison to “Baja California,” an area of Mexico that some feel is an extension of California.
The second reason: When Spain controlled Louisiana in the latter 1700’s, Spanish colonial officials divided “Luisiana,” as they spelled it, into two regions: Upper Louisiana or “Alta Luisiana,” and Lower Lousiana or “Baja Luisiana,” the Southern area that contained what is now the Acadiana region, home of my Cajun forebearers.
So I wanted to name my album “Baja Louisiana” as a tribute to my area and my culture.