Louisiana native Marc Broussard seems to have life by the tail. He’s a successful Southern soul singer/songwriter with an adorable family, including four children. But this self-described family man said his life has evolved quite a bit since breaking into the music business over 15 years ago.
“I’ll put it this way. If today I ran into a 20-year old Marc Broussard, I’d walk right up to him and punch him straight in the face.”
The current iteration of Broussard said he would punch the 20-year old version of himself again if he had asked why he was being punched.
“That guy was such an amateur jerk who had his head up his arse. He didn’t have much vision or drive and needed to be punched in the face a few times.”
Broussard said he received a virtual punch in the face around 2008.
“I finally woke up to the error of my previous ways, and started to try to make amends for the wrongs I had done and the way I had lived my life up to that point.”
Broussard, who plays the Castle Theater in downtown Bloomington May 20, grew up in the small town of Carencro, Louisiana, just outside Lafayette. It’s the heart of Cajun and Zydeco country, and a part of the country where everyone brings their instruments when invited to a party.
“It’s the truth man. My uncle plays keyboards, my father plays guitar, my other uncle plays the drums, my aunt sings and all my cousins play and sing. When my family gets together for Christmas at my parents’ house, we jam, and we jam all night long.”
Family is prominent on Broussard’s latest album, the 2014 release “A Life Worth Living.” The title track was written about his late Grandmother. He said she passed away from cancer at the same time Hurricane Isaac was bearing down on Louisiana.
“We didn’t realize she had cancer until about two weeks before she passed away. It was all a little sudden, so there wasn’t much that anybody was saying. We were all kind of left speechless. And I got really inspired. I sat in a room by myself for about an hour and really kind of honed in on what it was that needed to be said about this amazing woman’s life. I was able to come out with a song I love. I love this song so much.”
Broussard and his wife now have four children. He said they have been a huge influence on him as a person, which has naturally seeped into his music. He said every personal and professional decision he makes is done with his children and family in mind. Broussard’s oldest son Gavin is showing promise as a heavy metal guitarist. Broussard said he loves it because many of his favorite guitarists come from that scene. Gavin is also the subject of a song his father wrote early in his career.
“I wrote that song with a buddy of mine in Nashville called Dave Barnes. I got to his house that day and he said ‘I think we should write a song about your son.’ Dave already had a few lines written and a melody to go with it. I was very moved by what he was talking about. So we chased down that dragon.”
“Gavin’s Song” is a lament about being away from family while touring. It’s a direct appeal to his son to ‘be good for your mother because she’ll need a hand to hold. She loves you more than you’ll know.’”
Broussard says the song still resonates with him, and is touched by the stories from fans that tell him the song has touched them over the years.
“The story’s from soldiers who say that song has gotten them through long tours. And the mothers who have been without the fathers who were off at war, who have sung that song to their children. Those are the story’s that have given me a newfound inspiration when performing that song.”
Marc Broussard has come a long way from the 20-year old self he would punch in the face should a rift occur in the space-time continuum. He said that is the core of “A Life Worth Living.”
“That’s exactly what it’s about. You want to strive to live a life worth living. A life worth talking about.”