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Friday, 30 November 2012 12:06

Blenders presents Del Barber at the Lyric Dec 8

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Singer / songwriter Del Barber looks at his family’s blue collar history to find the inspiration for his award-winning music. Barber will bring his Americana-style folk rock to the Lyric Theatre’s stage on Dec. 8 as part of the Blenders concert series.


“I grew up with a family that all played instruments, so family reunions were always big sing-a-longs,” explained Barber. “My dad gave me first lessons on the guitar, and then I ended up taking lessons from one of Winnipeg’s best guitar players when I was about 10 or 11.”

Barber noted that although he played in several bands throughout high school, it wasn’t until he started writing songs that music became really important to him. He started taking his music more seriously after that.

“I don’t know if I ever made a conscious decision about it, but it started becoming increasingly clear to me that I was starting to do this for a living, doing less and less side jobs,” he said. “I didn’t expect it to work out as a career, so I was really pleasantly surprised.”

Barber admitted that he knows it can be difficult for musicians to make a living with their art, but he is hoping to sustain himself with a career in music into the future. For him, music was never a grandiose dream, but rather something that developed from his fascination with people.

“I’m from a blue collage family, and find inspiration in people and jobs and culture, people living lives of tension,” he explained. “I tend toward characters and stories that are compelling to me as a result of who and where I’m from. A lot of it is landscape and the culture that the prairies have.”

Barber describes his music as simple country and folk, but enjoys telling stories. He noted that while many musicians in his genre tend on the sad, brooding side, he prefers his music to be a little more hopeful sounding.

“A lot of musicians do sad well, but I don’t want to be that,” he said. “My father wouldn’t respect me if I was whining about my lot, because I know I have it pretty good. I hope my music sounds grateful.”

He hopes that his audience can have a laugh and not take his shows too seriously. He likes to keep things light by interacting with the crowd, and working them into the narrative. Barber admitted that the stage is where he feels most at home.

“I don’t know if it’s a positive thing, but it really is the place where I feel most comfortable now,” noted Barber. “I feel really at ease in front of people, and it’s a joy to do it. Sometimes, I deal with that classic artist problem where I worry I’ll never write another good song ever again, but I really love it.”

He also enjoys having the opportunity to experience more of the prairie landscape, something that he finds very rewarding.

“As an introvert, meeting all of these people and talking to them is something that I really never thought I would like so much,” he admitted. “But it’s a part of the job that’s been so good – getting to play in places like Swift Current, these rural places on the prairie. I think it helps me write better.”

Barber will be performing at the Lyric Theatre on Dec. 8, as part of the Blenders concert series. Tickets are only $25 and are available at Pharmasave or by contacting Shann at 306-778-2686 or  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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Jessi Gowan