Published on www.dailyworld.com
By Herman Fuselier, email@example.com
David Simpson Singer David Egan of Lafayette wrote songs that have been covered by a long list of music stars and legends. Singer David Egan of Lafayette wrote songs that have been covered by a long list of music stars and legends.(Photo: David Simpson)
David Egan left his mark in the world as a songwriter. Egan’s originals have been covered by Joe Cocker, Etta James, Marc Broussard, Percy Sledge and a long list of renowned singers.
But few may know that Egan, who died last March, also wanted to leave his mark as a ping pong champion. The musician always stood ready, willing and able to accept all ping pong challengers.
"He was kind of a lunatic about it, to be honest,” said Rhonda Ball Egan, David’s widow. "His big fantasy was to put a garage in our backyard to put a ping pong table back there.
"When the bands travel, ping pong tables are pretty common backstage in places. He was just really cocky about it.
"He could beat just about anybody. He used to bug Red Lerille about getting ping pong tables at Red’s. It was really a funny part of his personality.”
Challengers can compete in the songwriter’s memory in the 2016 Egan Cup, a ping pong tournament at 2 p.m. Sunday at Warehouse 535. Admission is $5. Registration fee is $15 for participants, who must be 18 or older.
Awards will be issued at 6 p.m. Grammy winner Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band entertain from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The dates for "Sing It: The David Egan Songbook” — a series of tribute shows in Lafayette, New Orleans and Shreveport — will be announced.
Proceeds from the tournament and the shows will go to the David Egan Dreamer Fund at the Community Foundation of Acadiana. The fund will be used to help musicians and artists with local projects.
Egan was an advocate for smoke-free living. He made speeches before local and state government leaders and allowed his image to be used in billboard ads.
At the tournament, organizers will provide an update on efforts to persuade Lafayette Consolidated Government to ban smoking in bars. In February, organizers are hoping to introduce a David Egan Ordinance to overcome previous opposition to smoking restrictions.
"Maybe we can finally make some progress,” said Rhonda Egan. "We’ll be asking people to sing some pledge support cards and gather momentum again to make that appeal.
"I am optimistic because I think ultimately, people will do the right thing. Our cultural economy is such a part of our identity here in Lafayette. It is part of the economy.
"The rest of the world is going that way. New Orleans hadn’t fallen apart. People didn’t stop drinking in London and New York City. People can still have a good time and still smoke. They can just smoke outside."
Want to go?
What: 2016 Egan Cup ping pong tournament
When: 2 p.m. Sunday
Where: Warehouse 535, 535 Garfield St.
Information: 2016 Egan Cup on Facebook