AB Variation:

Patricia Barber Trio

May 16, 2019


Born in the Chicago suburbs, Barber came by music naturally. Her father was Floyd “Shim” Barber, a saxophonist who had worked with Glenn Miller’s orchestra, and the instrument beguiled young Patricia: “When he played the saxophone around the house, I’d put my hand in the bell to feel the music.” She began playing piano at the age of six, but by the time she had graduated from high school – in South Sioux City, Nebraska, where the family had moved in the mid-60s, following her father’s death – Barber had forsworn jazz entirely.

“It was hanging over my head the whole time,” she recalled years later. “But I thought that becoming a jazz musician was such a stupid thing for a woman to do – for a smart woman to do – that I tried to resist it.”.

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