RENE LABRE

What Is the most Important Thing To You?

My relationship with my son.That trumps everything.When I became a single parent everything in my life changed.And I was footloose and fancy free with few cares."They Call me Labre,I keep rolling down the road" as my friend J.J. Cale put it.Then here comes the baby with the state wanting to take him away from you at the earliest possible age.I fought a battle royal with them over this.At the same time turned down the most tempting offer from a major label band to go on tour,a major tour,I had to stay at home and take care of the baby.Plus work a full time demanding job.I have a lot to be thankful for,a white guy as a single parent full custodial is a rare bird.The state did everything they could to take him away from me,planted drugs in my home to arrest me,oh man I was so angry I looked at that big bruiser of a police officer and told him "take off that badge so we can go through this man to man." He said,actually very kindly, "If you want to keep your son you had better not do anything stupid if you expect to bail out tomorrow."As soon as I was released I was taken for a urine test which I passed.I do not want to dwell on all of that.The only thing I wanted to do was love and relate to my son.i won that war with the state and was able to care for and relate to my own child and raise him up.I could not play in the honkytonks anymore so I became a gospel music director.It is easy when they are babies,hard when they become teens you just have to hang with it somehow,advise them the best you can and then they become adults.Here you lose them forever or have them forever.How wonderful it is when your child can call you on the phone and say "I want to come over so we can talk."How did this baby become a man?I mean he is still just a puppy yet I no longer talk down at him,I talk at him.I would guess my parenting skills could be questioned all the way,most harshly many times by those that have aborted their children because they would be "inconvenient."I had a very tempting offer to blast into being a prominent rock guitar player but being "mommy" came first.My own touring band wanted me to put him into foster care with the state because they felt he absorbed to much of my attention,I have to write that off without any hard feelings because they just did not understand.He came to NYC with us to record "(oo)(oo),he was no hindrance to us,he fell right in with the groove.I don't know,all of us ate from the same table was how I saw it.Andre Mack,my guitarist really took Jordan under his wing and buddied up to him.On the plane flight he said "come on Jordan,you are going to sit with me."And they were just the tightest of buddies.Any regrets I would have over things with the band is the loss of my friendship with Andre Mack.We would get together and play guitars for hours and hours.Rehearsing big rock endings.It was not a question of silly things like who plays lead guitar,you just play guitar and interchange the parts.Push each other to the limits.It would all just fall in.He would just stand there flicking his wrist,it was so cool,on (oo) (oo) we are both doing the rhythm guitar parts on a big fat gretch and you see how tight that is.Mike and Gary just put the two of us in a studio to get loose and we did a two hour non-stop blues jam.Gary Lefkowith was licking his chops cause he wanted to play too.I was set to do the solo on the record and composed a really great one in the vein of Santana,played it 600 times in the shared hotel bathroom of The Riverside Hotel.We were catching the subway to the studio and Andre said "You should play Gary's solo." That was enough for me,I had studied it as well.And ripped it out of the frame which set Gary into the mood of moping around the studio until Mike allowed him to put his stuff on the record.Which he persued with an r&b vengeance.We were pushed at this point to do this like a top level major label band.I am very happy with the results.

Be the first to respond!

Leave a comment:

  •