Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival will present a musical mix of Texan country, Zydeco


From Texan tunes just a stone’s throw away to the spicy beats of Zydeco, there’s something for every musical interest at this year’s Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival in downtown Conroe.

The downtown street festival, now in its 32nd year, runs from Friday evening October 8 through Sunday afternoon October 10.

The family-friendly event features non-stop live music with local, regional and national artists on three stages, food vendors featuring Cajun festivals and favorites, arts and crafts vendors, a professional carnival , an assortment of community and educational exhibits, an annual catfish competition, and a KidZone with activities for kids and a special stage featuring local dance teams, community groups and performers.

The annual event is hosted by Friends of Conroe, a non-profit group that seeks to make Conroe a great community in which to live, work and play. Proceeds from the Catfish Festival benefit the Friends of Conroe scholarships for high school students and the Friends of Conroe’s Friends Feeding Friends event on Thanksgiving Day.

The event will kick off with a carnival on Thursday, October 7 at 6 p.m. at the corner of Frazier Street and Texas 105.

This year’s festival brings a mix of first-time festival artists like Kolby Cooper and Cody Hibbard to seasoned festival veterans like Bayou Roux and Wayne Toups who are longtime performers at the event.

The festival begins Friday evening from 6 p.m. to midnight.

Texas Stage – Friday evening

Jake Bush – 6:45 a.m. to 8 a.m.

Bush was born in Pasadena and raised with Keith Whitley, George Jones, Tim McGraw and other ’90s country artists. He joined the US Army Reserves and was stationed at Ellington Field. In 2016, he released his first EP “Trying To Find Me”. He shared the stages with Big & Rich, Josh Ward, Easton Corbin, Johnny Lee, Wade Bowen, Roger Creager, Rick Trevino, Pat Green, Cory Morrow and many more. www.jakebushmusic.com

Cody Hibbard – 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Oklahoma native Cody Hibbard credits Conroe’s music scene with credit for bringing him to where he is today. The Oklahoma native has moved to the Conroe area in recent years for oil and gas pipeline work. But what he didn’t expect is for his music career to take off here. After releasing his first single “Half Whiskey, Half Lonely” in September 2019, Hibbard now has a full EP and was covered by a Nashville-based Red 11 Music in the summer of 2020. His eponymous new EP will be released in October. 1. https://www.codyhibbard.com/

Kolby Cooper – 10:30 a.m. to midnight

East Texas artist Kolby Cooper performed Friday night at the Montgomery County Fair in April. He released the final version of his first album in February 2020. In August 2020, he also released the EP “Vol. 2. “He’ll bring Conroe his signature blend of Lonestar State roots, rough-hewn vocals and electric guitar again on October 8. https://www.kolbycooper.com/

Cajun scene – Friday night

Bayou Roux – 6.30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Bayou Roux has a lock on the opening Friday night spot on the Cajun stage. They will make their 29th appearance at the festival. The band members took backgrounds in rock, jazz, country and more and merged it into a gumbo of sound straight out of Louisiana. After forming in April 1992, Kenneth Muecke convinced Richard Willis, then organizer of Catfish, to try his luck with the new group with Louisiana roots. The rest is history as they say. http://www.bayouroux.com/

Chubby Carrier and Bayou Swamp Band – 10:30 am to midnight

Chubby Carrier brings contagious sounds – a concoction of blues, 70s funk, rock and roll, and good zydeco flavor – and gets even the most shy of individuals moving. The release of funky zydeco group, “Zydeco Junkie” won one of the highest musical accolades when it was named Best Zydeco or Cajun Album at the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards in February 2011. https: // chubbycarrier.com/

Texas Stage – Saturday

Chad Cooke Band – 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.

The Houston-based band includes Chad Cooke on vocals and acoustic guitar, Dallas McGilberry on guitar and vocals, Kevin Pool on bass and vocals, and Mike Neyra on drums and vocals. Since the release of their debut album, Easy Way Home, in December 2016, the band’s debut single, “Oil Man,” continues to be a fan favorite. https://www.chadcookeband.com/

Jon Stork – 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Stork started playing in the College Station area while attending college there. He then played in Houston and made music his full-time career. He recorded and released his first EP,

In your radio
, ”
in 2017, placing him among the top 10 artists of the iTunes country ranking. His latest single “If You Can Dance,” aired on the air in March. https://jonstork.com/

Josh Ward – 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Josh Ward of Montgomery brought home Artist of the Year and Country Album of the Year for “Live at Billy Bob’s” at the 2020 Texas Country Music Association Awards. Ward grew up in Montgomery and competed in bareback riding competitions in high school. But he also loved playing guitar and country music legends. With encouragement from his friends, he soon realized he was better at vocals and guitar than on the rodeo circuit and his music career was launched. https://www.joshwardmusic.com/

Kevin Fowler – 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Born and raised in Amarillo, Fowler quickly became one of the best songwriters in country music with singles including “Love Song”, “How Country Are Ya” and his most recent hit, “Panhandle Poorboy”. Several pieces of Fowler’s work have also been used by other prominent artists, including Montgomery Gentry’s 2009 hit, “Long Line of Losers”. Fowler performed for the 2014 Catfish Festival and at the time, Montgomery County had a strong fan base. https://www.kevinfowler.com/

Casey Donahew 9:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Casey Donahew returns to headlining Saturday night after a performance at the Catfish Festival in 2015. Donahew has carved out a niche for himself on the country music scene, building his career from scratch, one show at a time. Donahew topped the Texas music charts on several occasions, released four albums independently, and forged his own path in the music scene. https://www.caseydonahew.com/

Cajun course – Saturday

The Zydeco Dots – 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

For more than two decades, the Houston-based Zydeco Dots have been part of the Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival. For 23 or 24 years, they have been performing on the festival’s Cajun stage and they are fans of the event in the downtown plaza. When they’re not playing, they attend the festival, shop, and enjoy the benefits going back to the community. https://www.facebook.com/zydecodots

Keyun & Zydeco Masters – 3 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Keyun & the Zydeco Masters are based in Houston and perform at festivals, parties, hikes and more in the Houston area. https://www.facebook.com/keyunzydeco

Wayne Toups – 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Grammy Award winner and Catfish Festival veteran Wayne Toups returns to the festival on Saturday night. The crowd can expect bright colors and great energy on stage. He called his music a combination of Cajun, Zydeco, Southern rock and a bit of soul which he called “Zydecajun”. https://www.waynetoups.com/

Geno Delafose – 10:30 am to midnight

Geno Delafose is an American Zydeco accordionist and singer. He is one of the younger generations of the genre who created the sound known as the new zydeco. His sound is deeply rooted in traditional Creole music with strong influences from Cajun music but also country and western. https://www.genodelafosemusic.com/

The festival ends Sunday with music on Phineus Reb’s Texas stage from noon to 2 p.m., Category 6 from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. and The Spazmatics from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. The Cajun Stage features DJ Fast Eddie from 12:30 p.m.

Visit https://www.friendsofconroe.com/p/getconnected/tickets-and-packages for tickets. Visit friendsofconroe.com for more information.

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