Charles Champagne, former lead singer of 1960’s music sensation, The Champagne Brothers, released his first solo album, Chickawawa, in 2011. The title track of the album pays homage to the 1963 release of the same name on Typhoon Records, which was a favorite on KILT, Houston’s most listened to Top 40’s radio station, at the time. However, Chickawawa’s success was surpassed by the A side of the same release when Stranger to You took the number one spot at KOLE in September of 1963.

Charles Champagne (center) led The Champagne Brothers from their humble beginnings in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The 19 track release features Charles’ hallmark husky baritone crooning classic favorites, but longtime fans will recognize the honeyed tones of yesteryear have been mellowed with time into a more sultry and mature style. Love songs, including The Champagne Brothers’ chart topper It’s Raining and Stranger to You  and Otis Redding’s These Arms of Mine, are balanced with racier tunes like Lucille and Miss Ann by Little Richard. R&B chestnuts from Charles’ early days like Shed So Many Tears, Just Because, and  Let The Good Times Roll also get a strong work out here. The other original from Charles, Baby Darling, was released in the early 60’s on a small label in South Lousiana, long out of print, is here and fresh again. Monkey Around and Just A Little Bit, also recorded by fellow Texan and soulful singer, Delbert McClinton, emphasize Charles’ passion for singing with horns in his band. Sam Cooke, Jimmy Clanton, and Lloyd Price penned other songs featured on this disc. Charles works his magic on the Motown hit, My Girl, and it’s as sweet as it gets. Charles is rock, soul, blues, R&B, and jazz all rolled into one.

The Early Years

The Champagne Brothers, pictured with Fats Domino after opening a performance for the legend, as part of the Hullabaloo Tour

Charles got his start in the rock and roll business in his hometown of New Orleans, fronting the original four brother’s combo, when he was only 11 years old. This is about the time Charles wrote and first recorded Baby Darling. A few years later, the family moved to Morgan City, LA and added Elton “Boo-Boo” Bussenelle on bass. Then, Houston called and they came and settled and brought us their sound. Weekly live performances at music venues throughout  Texas and South Louisiana kept them rocking through the 60’s.

Working with noted producer Huey P. Meaux on the Typhoon and Tear Drop labels, The Champagne Brothers recorded at the legendary Gold Star/SugarHill Studios and “Pasadena Sounds”. Airplay success followed these recordings and the band was booked for national appearances including (the smash hit television show) Hullabaloo Tour and opened shows for top performers Fats Domino, The Everly Brothers, and Eddy Arnold.

Gulf Coast music fans fondly recall many large scale performances and special events featuring The Champagne Brothers. In addition to the annual KILT Coliseum Spectacular where the band shared a stage with the likes of Roy Orbison, Ben E. King, and Frankie Miller, and the Miss Houston Pageant of 1962, The Champagne Brothers offered special tribute performances to The Beatles. In 1964 the band appeared at the Jefferson Theater in Beaumont, TX for the premier screening of Hard Day’s Night. In Fab Four costume, they played a set of Beatle songs that left the crowd swooning.


Charles Champagne is available for private parties and media appearances. For more information, email the details of your inquiry.

2 Responses to “About”
  1. Shelly Johnson says:

    I LOVE IT!

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