Interviews

Published on November 12th, 2019 | by Percy Crawford

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Louisiana’s Soul Man, Marc Broussard Delivers “S.O.S. 3: A Lullaby Collection” the Album Along with, “I Love You For You,” the Book On November 15th

Marc Broussard covers a series of classics with his new, Lullaby album. The Louisiana native steps outside of his comfort zone to provide an album geared towards a younger crowd but delivers same soulful sound.

Marc Broussard is a prime example of “Never judge a book by its cover.” Sporting a full brownish-red beard and Kangol hat on most occasions, the guitar that’s usually strapped to his shoulder is fitting. Considering his father, Ted Broussard is a Louisiana Hall of Fame guitarist inductee, solidifies the guitar even more so. But what makes him an anomaly is his extremely soulful voice and soulful spirit when he steps behind a mic and starts to sing. A style which has been described as, “Bayou Soul” or “Swamp Rock,” Broussard continues to wow audiences will legendary covers and original work. In a series he’s tabbed as, “S.O.S.” an acronym for, Save Our Soul, his November 15th release, “S.O.S. 3: A Lullaby Collection,” will be geared more towards a younger audience, but his big voice will draw adults in as well. The album will be accompanied by a kid’s book titled, “I Love You For You.” The multi-talented musician has been featured on several shows including, “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Larry King Live, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Conan O’Brien, Lopez Live and many more. He has released more than 10-albums. Broussard is currently on tour. For tour dates, tickets and to pre-order the album, visit https://www.marcbroussard.com/

I had the pleasure of speaking with, Marc recently. He explains the thought process behind releasing an album/book combo, opens up about his start in the music industry and the importance of his philanthropy work.

You are from the Lafayette area, do you know, Daniel Cormier?

Marc Broussard: Of course, man. That’s my dude. He is a beast.

You’re a beast too and it seems like Lafayette with guys like you, “DC” and Dustin Poirier coming out of that area… Louisiana in general has a lot of talent coming out of it. I’m sure that’s refreshing to see.

Marc Broussard: Well I think when it comes to professions that require some heart, you going to find it in drones down here, bruh. That goes for the fighters and the singers. Anything that requires heart. As a matter of fact, I was talking to a jockey awhile back and he told me to go look up how many jockeys are from around here and it’s staggering. Every other horse track, they usually have a few jockeys from that area who are working professionally. You may see 3 or 4 jockeys here, 5 jockeys here, 7 jockeys here, and we had like 240 jockeys working professionally that were just from Acadiana. So, yeah, I think anything that requires a little extra heart, you’re going to find it in South Louisiana, no doubt.

You have an amazing Save Our Soul (SOS) series going. Your recent installment is the, Lullaby Collection which will be dropping November 15th. I love this project because you even somewhat admitted that this is stepping out of your comfort zone. Your inspiration for the album stems from listening to, Andy Williams who you weren’t a fan of or familiar with. What made you want to step out of your comfort zone for this album?

Marc Broussard: The “SOS” project as a hole, we put out these projects every few years to try to raise money for charity. So, I use the records as sort of an opportunity to try and take a stab at some material that I might not otherwise. The general principal of working on the “SOS” stuff, I’m talking about working on material that I’m unfamiliar with or that I may be a little uncomfortable with. Once I heard, Andy Williams voice on, “Moon River,” and on, “Danny Boy,” I was in love man. I love the man’s voice. You hit me 5-years ago, I would’ve said that that man sounds like a square, but these days, there is something about his delivery that really appealed to me. I was really looking forward to cutting those songs in particular.

I love the entire album. Your rendition of, “Moon River” is amazing and I love, “Gavin’s Song.” The entire project. Do you have a favorite from the album?

Marc Broussard: If I would have to pick a favorite, it would mean that I would have to vibe out to my own music for a while just to come to a conclusion. That’s not necessarily something that I’m real keen on doing. I don’t like to jam to my own stuff. I check it out after the record is done. And if somebody wants to play a track when I’m in the room or something that’s fine by me, but it’s not like I’m sitting back bumping my own music, ya know (laughing).

Man… if I had your voice, I would be bumping my own music.

Marc Broussard: (Laughing).

What a soulful voice you have. You truly have a touch of a lot of legends in you. How did you get started singing?

Marc Broussard: My pops (legendary guitarist, Mr. Ted Broussard) put me on the stage when I was about 5-years old. He had me singing some, Otis Redding, Chuck Berry and a little bit of, Stevie Wonder early on. But it wasn’t until I started buying music on my own. I started really digging into, Boyz II Men, Brian McKnight… that contemporary R&B stuff that was around in the mid and late 90’s, that’s what was driving my influence. I gravitated back towards the 60’s and 70’s soul music. When I started doing this professionally, I was heavily into, Donny Hathaway and even Curtis Mayfield. Those guys were my biggest influence on me growing up and still remain the biggest influences on me till this day.

“S.O.S. 3: A Lullaby Collection” is an album and you are also releasing a book with it, “I Love You For You.” Again, it just seems like you really wanted to try new things with this project. Where did the idea for the album/book combination come from?

Marc Broussard: It’s really an organic process. It started out, I got in touch with the charity about raising money for the hospital. I know some folks that work there, and they had reached out originally about us helping raise some money for the hospital. Then a month or so later, I was in Virginia doing a show. And the producer of that show, his wife is an illustrator and I knew that already. We had already spoken about doing a children’s book. But it was just a confluence of linking up with the hospital folks here in Baton Rouge and a short time later, linking up with my buddy’s wife who is an illustrator, it just kind of all clicked. That trip to Virginia, I got inspired and wrote the book on the flight home, I called her up and she loved it. She said she was in, started illustrating, I reached out to the hospital folks and let them know that we were going to do this, Lullaby album and a book and they jumped on it. It was kind of an organic process, but it happened fairly quickly.

Let us know what hospital this album will be benefitting because that’s awesome.

Marc Broussard: It’s Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital, which is a St. Jude affiliate.  It expands the gulf coast ability to treat pediatrics. Our Lady of the Lake had about 15-beds in their children’s wing at the old hospital. Now they have 75 or 78-beds and they go from being able to treat 15 to 20,000 patients a year to up over 200,000 patients a year. It’s an incredible addition for the health and wealth for our youth here in South Louisiana specifically. Apparently, St. Jude takes more patients from Louisiana than any other state in the country. So, increasing our abilities to deal with some of these issues here at home without having to send people out of state, it’s a real plus for us. I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of it.

There is a passion in your voice when you sing, you always speak about reshaping the world through your music, I think in such negative times, we could definitely use it, brother. Does that passion and that message come from your life experiences, your love of music or a combination of things?

Marc Broussard: I think it’s definitely a combination of things. I think it primarily stems from my transition from the shaky days of my youth, to more solid footing as a man. I see just how powerful my wife’s influence was to me. I see how powerful my parents and my brothers influence were to me. I see how good of an influence and the impact that they had on my life. I feel very strongly that if you put your values on display and if you live right, that people will take notice. That’s really the main driver, just trying to be a witness to the folks out here that might be struggling or having a hard time getting things together for themselves that, as long as you are working hard and living right, you really can come out of some darkness. Maybe not always, you might stumble every once and a while too, but for the most part, I’m living what I would consider my best life for sure. I’m very fortunate though and it wasn’t always like this. Even as a professional musician, I wasn’t always very happy because I wasn’t living the way I needed to. It wasn’t until I started really loving my wife properly and loving my kids properly and living honorably and up to the standards of my parents set forth for me that things really started to click for me. I wanted to just try and do everything that I can to just pay that forward.

No matter how crazy the times are, how much social media both negative and positively influence people, music have always had a way of bringing people together and bridging whatever gap there may be. When I read the comments on your YouTube page and your videos, you really touch people and I hope you read some of those comments because you need to see that you are impactful.

Marc Broussard: Yeah, you know, I think that is the most important lesson that I have learned in my life in my 37-years, is that, there is not a single Grammy or Oscar or any other accolade that I can receive, that would even hold a candle to the testimonials that my fans have walked up to me and shared with me over the years. Those accolades are nice, don’t get me wrong. I’m sure that a Grammy Award would be nice sitting up on my wall, but at the end of the day, I sleep very very well knowing I’m connecting parents to children and connecting people that may be in love or on the brink of love or just carrying somebody through a dark time, I think those are the things that I’m more than happy to hang my hat on. That brings me a lot of satisfaction when it comes to thinking about my life.

How many times do you get the, “A white boy is not supposed to sound like that,” line?

Marc Broussard: (Laughing). I have been hearing that my whole life. I’m one of them rare cats that you run across that have been the only white boy in the room on more times than you can count. I’ve been invited to the cookouts my whole life, guys that I graduated with asking me to sing at their wedding and being at the lil KC Hall. I’m very comfortable in my skin as a result of it. I’ve had a long time to develop sense of self. I take it as a compliment more than anything.

You have blown every song cover out of the water and obviously your original material is just amazing. Have you ever been intimidated by a cover or do you welcome the challenge of tackling songs from these industry icons?

Marc Broussard: I think about this stuff a lot, especially with the term cultural appropriation these days. I really think about some of my covers a lot before I do them and ultimately what it boils down to, I’m singing songs that I have been singing since I was a little boy. There is probably not a single African American that I graduated high school with that even knows the name, Solomon Burke. At least back in high school they didn’t. There may have been a handful that knew the name, Otis Redding. There might have been a handful that knew the name, Curtis Mayfield. But the truth is, I was the only cat that knew these cuts and really studied that music and loved that music the way a real fan does. At the end of the, that music is as much of my culture as it is anybody else’s. I feel like, as long as I’m doing my best to do justice to the arrangements and serve those original singers as best as I can without trying to crap all over their arrangements, but really pay homage… hopefully I get at least a little bit of love from the fanatics out there.

The intent can’t be attacked. We’re using these records to raise money for disadvantaged people. We raised almost $30,000 these last 2-years for homeless women and children in Atlanta with, “S.O.S. 2,” with, “S.O.S. 3” we’re raising money for sick children. All of these efforts are directly resulting from not only the fact that I never made money from records when I was on major labels. I never saw a dime from those records. I never needed that money and therefore whenever I went independent and started seeing that money, I can redirect it because I didn’t rely on it to feed my family. I never have. So, I redirected that money for people who really are in need. It used to keep the lights on in office buildings in New York City and Los Angeles, now that money keeps the lights on for people who are at risk of being homeless next month. So, again, if somebody wants to question any aspect of that stuff, they can do it all day long. I know, at the end of the day, A. We are having some great fun making some great records in the studio. Some stuff that I wouldn’t otherwise be doing, right. B. At the same time we are raising some money for some folks that really need it. I put those philosophical discussions aside because I do tend to indulge in those kinds of discussions. I’ve thought long and hard about it and at the end of the day I feel like we are justified in making the selections that we have regardless of how someone on the outside looking in may think.

Keep doing your thing, keep making Louisiana proud and November 15th, everyone go and grab, “S.O.S.3: A Lullaby Collection” the album, “I Love You For You,” is the book, be sure to grab that as well. Thank you for your time and I hope to speak with you again soon. Is there anything else you would like to add

Marc Broussard: Nah, Percy. I just can’t wait to get that record in everyone’s hands, pick up the book and we will be around, Slidell if you are talking about local meters… we will be around the area around Christmas time. We have a show at, Southport Music Hall. I believe the date is December 23rd. You can holla anytime, P. Take care, my brother.

 

 



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