Jean Labre (photos M. Vicent-Roubert)All the Harmonicas
of the World ...
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Presidential Wind
A presidential wind is sweeping right now over the planet. The associations are not immune to this phenomenon, such as: "France Harmonica" in Paris and SPAH at Irvin , Texas... whose members are invited to return to the polls. Without forgetting the State heads elections : France, USA and everywhere... A boom offered to the medias that are harassing us continuously.
So much so that many potential candidates don't hesitate to question their the mirror in their bathroom, in the early morning. Ah, those mirrors! They would do well to think before reflecting pictures!
There is a phenomenon drawing my attention, something that brings a breath of fresh air in this presidential turmoil. Let's go to the other side of the Atlantic to discover a beautiful love story. It concerns eight US Presidents who, for over 150 years, have lived an incredible honeymoon with our instrument. It started around 1860 with Abraham Lincoln, who according to Carl Sandburg biography, often played harmonica during his debates ; Warren G. Harding who, during his short mandate, kept a collection of harmonicas in the White House Oval Office ; Calvin Coolidge who, so it's said, amused his visitors in the same office ; Theodore Roosvelt, Nobel Prize, who often liked to play our instrument ; Woodrow Wilson, another avid harmonica player ; Dwight Eisenhower, the second World War winner, who was also a passionate of our instrument; it was the same for Ronald Reagan, a charmer, who was never tired of playing " Red River Valley " ; and then, let's not forget Bill Clinton, saxophone player, who once said : " An election campaign is made in verses... then we govern in prose."
I remember in 1972 one winter evening in Flaine, ski resort in French Savoie, during which the future French President Valery Giscard D'Estaing skilfully played traditional tunes on the accordion. This event happened in a traditional trattoria in the center of the village. My son Stephane, a baby at this time, attended this evening comfortably seated in his moses basket...

To vote is etymologically to make a wish, did you know that?

Take life as it comes, the wind as it blows... and the bright side of life.

- Jean Labre
Published June 20th 2012


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