Over the weekend we commemorated the passing of a longtime member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Barry O’Brien was not a performer, producer or record executive. He was a Fan. I attended his memorial on Saturday at the Beachland Ballroom with hundreds of family and friends. We were honored that his widow Janis and daughter Kirin invited the Hall of Fame to participate in this celebration of Barry’s life. There are so many things in this world that divide us but music has this incredible power to unite us and to build up a strong sense of community.
Barry loved rock and roll music and was a strong supporter of our nonprofit mission. He was part of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Family—he was a longtime member of the Roll Hall and helped us to celebrate the opening of the Museum some 15 years ago. Just a few weeks ago he called us to reserve tickets to our upcoming Janis Joplin Tribute Event at Playhouse Square.
Passion for music connects many of us and we are honored to have been a part of Barry’s life and thrilled that he was part of our community. We are deeply grateful that the family has entrusted the Rock Hall with being one of the places for Barry’s memorial gifts. These gifts will help us continue to deliver quality educational programs to school children around the country giving them the opportunity to learn through the power of music.
Those of us that are lucky enough to work at the Museum are simply the current stewards of this important treasure. We keep the flame but it really belongs to those with a passion and love for rock and roll like Barry.