Wayne Toups http://www.waynetoups.com (born October 2, 1958 in Lafayette, Louisiana) is one of the most commercially successful American Cajun singers. He is also a songwriter.
Wayne Toups was born into a family of rice farmers in Crowley, Louisiana. He first picked up an accordion when he was 13 and quickly began winning local accordion contests. Toups has combined his love of Cajun music, rock, R&B, and zydeco into a genre he calls Zydecajun. He sings in both English and French.
Toups released his first album, Wayne Toups and the Crowley Aces in Europe in the early 1970s. Toups began gaining popularity in the United States around 1984 when he began performing at local festivals such as the Festivals Acadiens in Lafayette, Louisiana. In 1987 he released his first album, Zydecajun. The Cajun French Music Association's awarded him their "Song of the Year" Award in 1990 for his song "Late in Life." Three of his songs, including wedding favorite "Take My Hand", were featured in the movie Dirty Rice, and some of his work is also featured on the soundtracks for the movie Steel Magnolias and the television show "Broken Badges". He has recorded for the major record labels Polygram and Mercury. His 1995 release, Back to the Bayou became the fastest-selling record ever for the independent Louisiana label Swallow Records.
Besides playing his own music, Toups has been featured playing the accordion on singles for many country music stars. He appears on the Mark Chesnutt Number One hits "Gonna Get a Life" and "It Sure Is Monday", on Clay Walker's "Live Laugh Love", and Alan Jackson's "Little Bitty." He has also played with Sammy Kershaw, George Jones, Mark Wills, Garth Brooks, and Ty England.
Toups is known for wearing bright tropical shirts during his performances. He has toured in over twenty-six countries, including in South America, Canada, Europe and the Far East. He has appeared on MTV and on the 1990 Super Bowl telecast. He has many relatives in the Texas/Louisiana area.