My buddy Jim Baer passed away, just the other night, after a long, long run of ill health. This was someone I'd known for over thirty years, and even though he was never a musician, Jim deserves a mention in this Forum, and here's why.
Jim was the kind of guy who'd come over and help you haul your equipment, because he had a big old Ford LTD Wagon that would carry just about anything, and he liked being part of whatever his friends were doing, especially music.
If your band had a gig nearby, Jim would round up 15, or 20, or 30 friends to come out and see you, so you'd always have an audience. It didn't matter what kind of music you played, if you were Jim's friend, you had friends and fans.
If there was a concert or a show everyone wanted to see, Jim would fill up the LTD, with as many folks as it would hold, and take everybody. We once drove 200 miles, to see The Who in concert, with the whole wagon packed, and drove back the same night, after the show.
If you were down and out, Jim would give you a place to crash, help you find a job, whatever it took to get you on your feet, and very often that meant coming up with a concert or movie ticket for someone who couldn't afford to come along, otherwise.
Jim was more than a friend, or a music fan, he was a fellow participant, someone who helped drive the bus, so others could enjoy the ride, too - I can't put it any better than that.
Please don't feel badly for me, that's not what this post is about. What I would really ask everyone here in the Forum to do, if you've ever had a friend like Jim, is to call them, or write them, or send them an email, to please take a minute to value that friend and that relationship, while you can. You never know . . .
Much love to everyone here, and thanks.