Franco-American Collection

Francis Gagnon

Francis GagnonMusic is something I would hear every night. It was my father playing the accordion in the kitchen, in the stairwell of the hallway where the acoustics were always high school, I’d get phone calls from friends or whatever, “What’s that noise in the background?” “Oh, that’s my dad, he plays the accordion.” “The accordion, what’s that?” “It’s my dad, he plays the accordion every night. You know, we’re French Canadian, you know, that’s what we do.”

Francis Gagnon was born in Rumford in 1973.  His father, Normand, was a lumberjack in Quebec before moving to the United States to work as a furniture-maker.  He began playing the spoons with his father at age 8 and continued to play with him as part of the Normand Gagnon Ensemble and Groupe de Joie.  In this in interview, Francis talks about his parent's decision to come to Maine, his family's musical background, and the importance of music to his heritage.  The Gagnon family also maintains a pumpkin farm in Rumford.

This interview was recorded with the assistance of Storybank Maine.

Listen to the interview

Read the transcript (PDF)

Return to oral histories.

July Hours

The Collection will be open the first three weeks of July on Tues., Wed., and Thurs. from 10 until 4.  It will be closed for vacation the last week of July.  The Collection will re-open on August 1 with its regular Mon.-Thurs. schedule.

Call 207-753-6545 or email if you wish to arrange some other time to visit.

Connect With Us