Our Story

Formed over 10 years ago, PONCHARTRAIN'S music is described as ‘vintage Americana’ – "It's a honky-tonk, rockabilly, Cajun, bluesy kind of thing. The vibe is very 40s and 50s, I love stuff by amazing writers like Little Jimmy Dickens, Leadbelly, Wiley Barkdull and Bessie Smith, so we draw on some great songs, but play them with our own spirit and sound. There is a big resurgence of interest in this music at the moment, which is great to see!” Frontman Paul Godden's musical career started back in the 1970’s, playing and singing around the folk and blues clubs of Bristol and London. From roots blues, to R&B, country, bluegrass and rockabilly, and he has been the mainstay of numerous bands since then. In addition to radio and TV work, he has backed and supported the likes of Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee, Patsy Montana, Doctor Ross, Champion Jack Dupree, Jo-Anne Kelly, Flaco Jimminez and numerous 50s rockabilly legends as steel guitar player with Cardiff band The Rimshots. Paul has also toured and recorded with Van Morrison, and appears on two of Van’s albums ‘You Win Again’ and ‘Pay the Devil’.
In PONCHARTRAIN Paul provides the lead vocals, and rhythm guitar, doubling on steel guitar and dobro. He is joined by Jean Godden on fiddle and accordion (Kelvin Henderson Band, Jo-Anne Kelly, Flaco Jimminez, Rimshots). The band also features Stig Manley on lead guitar (Hookem Boys, Adrian Utley Guitar Orchestra), Joe Allan on double-bass (Stangelove, Saturation Point, Alison Moyet) and Tim Robinson on drums (Daily Planet and beyond..). On the band's new album 'LONESOME JOURNEY' they are joined on piano by John Baggott (Robert Plant) and on harmonica by Professor of Criminology Kevin ‘Doc’ Stenson