Just days ago, the Central Iowa music scene lost an incredible player. Jeff Blanchard, guitarist and vocalist for Mr. Baber’s Neighbors, passed into the night.
JB was everything you’d hope to find in a fellow musician. I had the beautiful opportunity to share the stage with the Baberhood on several occasions, and on each of those occasions, JB was nothing less than gracious, loving and warm. He was such a powerful presence to be around, especially for a younger musician who was often filled with nerves before hitting the stage. A few brief minutes in his company filled you with confidence and brought you peace simultaneously.
A few years back, the Baberhood met at The Mint, our recording/playing space to demo a few songs they had been working on. I ran the board for them that night and witnessed only what I could describe as something magically. To them, I suppose it was less of a moment and more of the ongoing wave that musicians tap into. That night, they recorded a scratch track of Matterhorn and it was hauntingly good.
I have nothing but love for Jeff, Jerry and the boys, and Jeff’s larger family. May there be a little room in the circle the next time we meet.
“The Queen would surely knight me if I could get back down
But it’s closer here to heaven than it is back to the ground”