3: Diamond Guts, “Marginal Time”

My best guess why Jeff played “Marginal Time” so often was that it’s a catchy number and one of the better performed and recorded songs I’ve been a part of. Jeff played the first song that I ever recorded, a creaky Beat Happening knock-off that I wrote under the moniker Ten Years Old on a two-string guitar and recorded in my bedroom on cassette four-track, on Pipeline! in 2003 and it blew my mind. Over the years Jeff would invite me or the different bands I was in to play shows around Boston, and he never stopped playing my home brew music projects on the radio. It still blows my mind. I think Jeff liked a musical underdog, and I could barely carry a note or hold a beat. I got a bit better over the years, and I think “Marginal Time” was probably a culmination of that progress. I still can’t get over how many people have had similar experiences with Jeff. I remember playing a show at Abbey Lounge with my sister and we forgot our backing drum machine, and before the first song was over Jeff was playing drums with us on another band’s kit that was half set up on stage. I was turned on to so much strange music from the New England area by Jeff, he made it feel like you were a part of a rich community of musical cosmonauts, each exploring their own corners of the universe, sending back transmissions of what they’d found. The world is so much poorer without Jeff Breeze, but his spirit is carried by hundreds, probably thousands, of unique creative voices that have been emboldened by his sincere interest, encouragement and championing. Ride on, my friend.

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