Lighting it up: Baton Rouge’s lone neon sign maker is in high demand

(Photo by Brian Baiamonte)

As the owner of Cajun Custom Neon, Clyde Bass is also the sole neon bender left in Baton Rouge.

“When the popularity of neon took a nosedive in the late ’90s and early 2000s, accelerated by the increased adoption of LED technology, all the older neon guys didn’t really teach anyone else,” Bass tells Business Report in its new Entrepreneur feature. “Now the problem is there are not enough people to do the actual work. I’m the only one in Baton Rouge.”

Bass has been lighting up restaurants, movie sets and businesses in the Baton Rouge area for nearly a decade. When he began to practice his craft in 2003, there were more than 30 neon craftsman in Louisiana. Now, he knows of only four.

In light of the lack of neon sign makers, Bass’ biggest challenge is trying to meet the high demand for his work. In recent years, Bass has often had to turn down work because he can’t find the help he needs.

“When someone calls wanting something new, it takes me about two months to get to it,” he says. Read the full Entrepreneur feature.

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