Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys at the Fred Charlie Music Stage, Eunice Mardi Gras Day, March 5, 2019
As they have for many years, Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys performed starting at 4 p.m. for a street dance in downtown Eunice on Mardi Gras Day. I was taking photos of the Eunice Mardi Gras Courir Parade and didn’t arrive at the Fred Charlie Music Stage until about 4:15. In addition to favorite songs drawn from their 30-year history, the band also performed several new songs that will be on an upcoming CD. The temperature had finally risen above 50 degrees, and both the band and the crowd made the most of this final opportunity to enjoy Mardi Gras to the fullest as the day drew to a close.

I took several photos with my new Nikon 8-15 mm f/3.5-5.4 lens, including shots of Steve Riley interacting with a Mardi Gras that also covered the rest of the stage. They looked nice when I glimpsed at them in the camera monitor, so I was very disappointed after I later discovered they were badly out-of-focus. Camera data showed that the lens was set on manual focus. Because the lens barrel is very short, the switch that sets auto or manual focus is near the base, where, in quickly changing lenses amid the crowd next to the stage, I must have nudged it to the manual setting. However, I did manage to get a few other wide angle shots of the band and the crowd, and overall I really like the lens, which opens up to become a fisheye but also works well as a wide angle lens at 15 mm.

For a listing of Cajun and Zydeco bands and Mardi Gras photos included on these Flickr pages, go to or
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