Lou Hazel Harnesses Old School Story Telling Approach On “Claude the Armadillo”

“Claude the Armadillo”, the latest release from Lou Hazel, is an old school country storytelling song about a small placental mammal hoping to inspire a mixed-up, on edge world to try just gettin’ by on gettin’ by. Lou Hazel is the country/folk project of Chris Frisina, who when writing songs “uses what can only be explained as a genetic link to ancestral angst and talent to search for his place in a world out of sync.”  The result is an endearing tale that sounds as if Paul Simon put out an album with Terry Allen’s Panhandle Mystery Band set to a charmingly animated video that takes you back to the 1970’s glory days of Sesame Street. 

Hazel recaps

My Uncle Ralph Frisina wrote “Claude the Armadillo” 40 years ago in 1981. The cold war was becoming a commonplace topic of dubious experts in mullets gathered around campfires. To set the scene, bad vibes between the West and the Soviet Union fostered Olympic boycotts and the Russian villain had become a pervasive, tired theme in every movie plot.

To a young idealist, writing Claude was a prescription for anxiety while two of the world’s most powerful entities postured against one another. Did you know that when faced with adversity some armadillos just curl into a ball? This endearing, passive trait made Claude the ideal arbiter of peace and reason in a world gone mad.

I heard about Claude the Armadillo for the first time around a campfire when I was 8 years old – mouth full of s’mores, and I’ve been looking for him ever since. Claude remains an old friend, a confidant who, as timely as ever, confronts us about the weapons we gather against one another without knowing how we’ll use them or what damage they’ll do.”

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