Louisiana's Le Roux, as they were originally known, started out as a country/Dixie style rock outfit in the mid seventies. They were originally formed by percussionist Bobby Campo, bassist Leon Medica, drummer Dave Peters, guitarist/vocalist Jeff Pollard, keyboard player Ron Roddy and guitarist/vocalist Tony Haselden. Their first two albums, "Louisiana's Le Roux" in 1978 and "Keep the Fire Burning" in 1979, were more Southern/country in style, but they adopted a more commercially acceptable AOR style from this third album onwards. They went on to release a further two albums before splitting in the mid eighties. Fergie Frederiksen, vocalist on Le Roux's final album, "So Fired up" in 1983, went on to feature with Toto in 1984, and he recently released a very good solo album. Le Roux recently reformed and released a new album. 
  
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Biography by Doug Stone
Named for a creole sauce, this unit came together working as an in-house rhythm section at Studio in the County, a major recording hub in Bogalusa, LA. Staff producer Leon Medica picked up the bass, Rod Roddy took the keys, Bobby Campo tooted the flute and horn, David Peters manned the drums, and Jeff Pollard stepped out in front with his guitar. The crew worked steadily behind local legends like Clifton Chenier and Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown. Soon the quintet toured as the Jeff Pollard Band. Inking a contract with Capitol in 1977, the group became Louisiana's Le Roux, and guitarist Tony Haselden came aboard for the release of a self-titled work in early 1978. "New Orleans Ladies" got some attention and led to Keep the Fire Burnin' (a title copped by REO?) and the Jai Winding-produced UP (inspired by Russ Meyer?). The boys toured steadily and can be heard on the Charlie Daniels wax Volunteer Jam VI. Louisiana's Le Roux also shone on the Midnight Special and Don Kirshner's Rock Concert. In 1981, Le Roux truncated it's moniker and signed with RCA. Label debut Last Safe Place featured polished album rock and clawed at some limited airtime. "Addicted" garnered MTV showings and the band performed on Solid Gold. Then Pollard and Campo jumped ship (Pollard starting a Christian ministry), making way for young fellow Baton Rouge native Jim Odom on lead guitar. Odom attended Berklee on a Down Beat scholarship, and subsequently formed Asia (not the supergroup, who consulted with Odom prior to taking the name to great heights) before joining Le Roux. Rock star Dennis "Fergie" Frederiksen left Chicago pomp-band Trillion to sing lead on So Fired Up (Minor hit "Carrie's Gone" details Frederiksen's liaison with Carol Burnett's daughter). Eschewing all R&B roots and considered a classic by many AOR elitists, So Fired Up did not prevent RCA from dumping Le Roux. Frederiksen immediately moved on to Toto. Medica and Haselden then ventured into songwriting. Various members of Le Roux reformed in the '90s behind a decent collection called Bayou Degradable. 

 

Bobby Campo
Fergie Frederiksen
Tony Haselden
Leon Medica
Jim Odom
David Peters
Jeff Pollard
Rod Roddy

Firefall
The Average White Band
Wild Cherry
REO Speedwagon
Michael Stanley
Kenny Loggins
Dewey Balfa
Queen Ida

If you have any contribution to make to this band or something to add, email me - Japie Marais.

 

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Le Roux - 1979 - Keep the Fire Burnin' - 3/5

Le Roux - 1980 - Last Safe Place - 3.5/5

Le Roux - 1980 - Up - 3/5

Le Roux - 1983 - So fired Up - 4/5

Le Roux - 2000 - Ain't Nothing But a Gris Gris - 4/5

Le Roux - 2003 - Higher Up, Live 1980 - 4/5

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