Josef “Bigg Redd” Arline grew up in Hillister, Texas about 45 minutes North of Beaumont, TX and 45 minutes West of Louisiana. Like many vocalists and performers church was the place where, as a young boy growing up in the South, he found his love of music. As he grew in to his teen years, Bigg Redd saw the profound impact, at times spiritual, that his performing had on friends and family.
In school he was a student of the arts. He played trombone and experimented with other instruments; finding that he could play just about anything he picked up.
In his junior high year, music was put on hold for construction jobs and farm work. After high school he entered the United States Marine Corps. When he was honorably discharged Bigg Redd returned to construction where his work took him to Salt Lake City Utah.
Music still remained a strong part of his everyday life and during his years in Utah he sampled the local music scene and also explored the commercial side of the business. He worked part time as a voice talent for radio commercials; including promotions for the Kentucky Lottery and the Idaho Potato Commission.
During his construction work in Salt Lake, Bigg Redd hung out with framing carpenters that led him to a whole new world of music. The Tongan nationals introduced him to Reggae. Bigg Redd performed with different groups at the well known Safari Reggae Club in Salt Lake City and later became a popular lead singer in one of the groups.
Southeast Texas was never as far as Bigg Redd’s heart. He returned to make it his home and rediscovered Blues. He hung out with “old school” musicians and enveloped himself in the Blues scene of the area. Josef “Bigg Redd” Arline quickly embraced the mixed styles of South Texas and Southern Louisiana. He became a lead vocalist in a Blues group that incorporated the sounds of not only Blues, but also Rock and Zydeco. The mixed format gave him the opportunity to showcase his diverse talent. And when the group tried to play Zydeco without the traditional accordion Bigg Redd mastered the instrument!
Josef’s found a style of his own with Zydeco that lead to his development of the Bigg Redd sound as a writer and performer. He was greatly Zydeco Playmakers and began playing local venues and private parties. After some time, the group hit the studio and cut their first recording project “Zydeco Lady”. Later Bigg Redd And the Zydeco Playmakers released their first official CD, “Secret Ingedients” with Maison de Soul Records.
Josef Arline , now performing as “Bigg Redd and Creole Soul” recently released his 2013 CD “Do You Qualify”.