The young musician was Sidney Simien, better known to most of us as Rockin' Sidney, and the simple little song that caught everyone's fancy was "Don't Mess with My Toot Toot."
Sidney, the son of a sharecropper, started his musical career when he was 14 or 15 playing the harmonica and guitar as backup for his uncle Frank Simien.
In his late teens, Sidney was leading his own band, Sidney Simien and His All Stars, which included several members of his family.
In 1957, at the age of 18, he recorded, "Make Me Understand," on the short-lived Carl label. "No Good Woman" became a small hit in Louisiana in 1962, while the flip side, "You Ain't Nothing But Fine" brought him his first national attention as a songwriter after the Fabulous Thunderbirds recorded it on their debut album.
Sidney played mostly rhythm and blues music until the mid-1970s, when Soileau, who had recorded several of his songs, suggested that he pick up the accordion and start doing zydeco.
By the early 1980s, Sidney had recorded two successful albums for Soileau's Maison de Soul, "Give Me A Good Time Woman," and "Boogie, Blues 'N' Zydeco."
But his big moment came in 1984, when Sidney wrote "Toot Toot" and included it in his third album, "My Zydeco Shoes Got the Zydeco Blues." He recorded the entire album in his home studio in Lake Charles, and played all the instruments himself.
"Toot Toot" was released as a single in Louisiana and Texas in 1985, became a big regional hit, and attracted huge attention in New Orleans.
That caught the ear of folks at Epic Records (a division of Columbia Records), who released it nationally - and that was that. "Toot Toot" stayed in the country Top 40 for 18 weeks.
It was the first zydeco record to get major airplay on pop, rock and country radio stations and that impressed the Grammy voters in 1985.
Outsiders said the song's popularity hinged on its double-entendre catchphrase, "Don't mess with my toot-toot," but locals say its real meaning comes from a Cajun term for "sweetheart," as in 'ma chere tout-tout."
Whichever is correct, the song still has its appeal.
"After more than 27 years, this song is still going strong," Soileau writes. "The Spanish/Latino version called 'Mi Cu-Cu' was one of the top played songs in the Latino record market just two years ago. After being licensed by a beer company in Germany ... to market their brand of beer, their version is still popular. There was a Scandinavian language version that made the top charts about five years ago."
Sidney toured the United States and Europe after the song's success and used royalties from " Toot Toot" to buy radio station KAOK in Lake Charles and to start his own record label, ZBC Records.
Rockin' Sidney Simien died of throat cancer in 1998 at the age of 60, leaving his legacy to his wife Carol, three sons, and four grandchildren. He is buried in Lebeau.
You can contact Jim Bradshaw at firstname.lastname@example.org or P.O. Box 1121, Washington LA 70589.