Lil’ Nathan & The Zydeco Big Timers – Darkness To Light: It Is What It Is


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Track List

  1. We Run The Streets
  2. Pumpin’ On Me
  3. Cuddle Up
  4. It Is What It Is
  5. Back To The Woods
  6. Nate
  7. Go Getta – Feat. Juvenile
  8. Darkness To Light
  9. Don’t Make Me Wait Too Long
  10. Cowgirl Swagg – Feat. New Cupid
  11. Goin’ H.A.M.
  12. Joue Joue
  13. I Need You
  14. Independent
  15. She Wanna Ride
  16. What Would You Do To Me

Release Date – 2013


Lil’ Nathan & the Zydeco Big Timers

Darkness to Light: It Is What It Is

(Cha Cha Records)

01 June 2014 — by Dan Willging

Since releasing his debut Zydeco Ballin’ at age 14, Lil’ Nathan has progressed to headliner status alongside contemporaries Keith Frank and Chris Ardoin. His latest is also an indication of how far modern zydeco has progressed as well, with only handful of tracks being the classic, older school variety. “Back to the Woods” is the most obvious example as Lil’ Nathan salutes icons Clifton Chenier, Rockin’ Dopsie and Boozoo Chavis. While “Back…” is pumped on the single-row accordion, “Joue Joue” is catchier with Nathan’s blazing runs on the triple-row box. “Pumpin’ on Me” also falls in this camp as does, to a lesser extent due to its keyboard, “Don’t Make Me Wait Too Long.”

With the exception of the latter, the aforementioned arrangements are sparser than the modern zydeco fare, which constitutes the bulk of these proceedings. Yet it’s the contemporary, urban-influenced selections that define Nathan as an innovative artist and producer. Nearly all have an accordion but the focus is on the densely-layered, electronic-centric arrangements that are often head-swirling with activity (“Goin’ H.A.M.,” “I Need You”). “Go Getta” and “Cowgirl Swag” find Lil’ Nathan rubbing shoulders with gangsta rapper Juvenile and dance party king New Cupid.

The lyrics are a mixture of real life stories, some autobiographical, some based on observations or nonfiction. “Darkness to Light,” the only sans accordion track, could be thought of as an updated adaptation of Rockin’ Sidney’s “What is Good for the Gander” but with a twistier plot. In short, an envelope-pushing triumph.


Additional information

Weight 5.0 oz
Dimensions 5.5 × 5.0 × 0.5 in
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