SKID ROW bassist RACHEL BOLAN remembers CINDERELLA guitarist JEFF LABAR – “He was always just a really genuine guy; I will miss him”
On July 20, Skid Row bassist Rachel Bolan appeared on In The Trenches With Ryan Roxie, and during the interview he discussed the recent passing of Cinderella guitarist Jeff LaBar, who died at 58.
LaBar’s cause of death has not been made public. He was found dead by his wife, Debinique Salazar-LaBar, on July 14 in his Nashville apartment.
Bolan: “The first times I saw Cinderella was at a club called the Galaxy – a little bar in New Jersey – and he wasn’t even in the band yet. Eventually, changes were made, then Jeff was in the band. All the makeup and energy on stage … Eric (Brittingham / bass) and Tom (Keifer / vocals, guitar) were there from the start, and they had their thing, but when Jeff was joining the band, it took a whole new energy, it was really cool.
He’s always been a really genuine guy and obviously a really good player. He actually replaced Snake (Dave Sabo); Snake had a problem with his arm. He was’ Dude, I can’t even choose. I can’t even hold onto a pickax … ‘so we called Jeff and he came over and filled two gigs. And it was fun. Stories of road dogs. It was great. We’ll miss him, man. Everyone was sad to hear that. “
Jeffrey Philip La Bar of Nashville, Tennessee passed away peacefully at the age of 58 on July 14, 2021. He was born on March 18, 1963 in Darby, Pa. To June and Bob La Bar. Jeff grew up in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania and attended Upper Darby High School.
Inspired by his brother Jack to pick up the guitar, he joined the local rock band Cinderella, which rose to prominence in the late 1980s with a series of platinum albums. The group has toured the world and recorded numerous songs and videos on MTV. Cinderella had an exceptionally strong fan base in Japan, which was especially special for Jeff as this is where his mother June was born and raised. He always took her and his family to Japan to attend the band’s concerts there, a highlight for both mother and son. As Jeff grew older, his love of music turned into a passion for the culinary arts, with his cuisine inspired by June’s Japanese heritage. He would reinterpret the dishes that were the standards of La Bar and add a unique touch.
After moving to Nashville in 2004, Jeff quickly surrounded himself with a community of dear friends that he loved to host and cook in his home. He never forgot his Delco roots, however, and remained close to everyone he grew up with in the region. While he became a bit of a Tennessee Titans fan when he moved to Nashville, Jeff’s number one sports franchises were in his hometown, with number one being the Philadelphia Eagles, as he never missed them. team matches and still texting his dad Bob during them. He still took the time to talk to his mother for hours every Sunday on the phone, remembering and listening to stories about the June days that had grown up in Japan. He was planning to return to Delco as his parents got older, and his mother was thrilled to see him return with her cooking.
Jeff inspired many of his friends and family to take up music, including his son and his pride and joy, Sebastian. He was eternally proud of the man and musician his son had become and was eager to work on a musical project with him. Sebastian often visited his father in Nashville and enjoyed playing music with Jeff and hearing about the adventures of the good old days when he was on the road. An animal lover, Jeff rescued cats, spent time caring for his fish, and adored his cat Loki.
In addition to Sebastian, Jeff is survived by his wife and best friend Debinique, with whom he created an internet radio show ‘Late Night with the La Bars’, his parents Bob and June, brothers Jack (Alice) and David (Victoria), sister Diane (Jason), sister-in-law Lisa and several nieces and nephews. Jeff was like a second father to his siblings Diane and David growing up. Even though he had many admirers, Jeff was an even bigger fan of his family and friends, seeing the best of everyone he met. There was rarely a photo of Jeff without a smile on his face. Jeff was an incredibly loving human being and will be missed beyond measure. Immediate arrangements are private and a celebration of Jeff’s life is planned for close friends and family.
Instead of flowers, consider donating to Grammy’s Musicares Financial recovery assistance program and drug addiction.