Musician Friends of Chris' - Interested in playing at the memorial 5/24? Please write us now. Outpourings
Too Soon to Lose You,
A gentle giant has passed quietly from our midst. Chris Barry, AKA the Lone Paranoid and Grizz Wald, whose raspy voice and shaggy hair and beard personified the music man icon of his era, reminiscent of Wolf Man Jack, the DJ whose fame spanned our continent, slipped from us on Friday, May 5, 2006, at 6:30 PM. He'd suffered with emphysema. The cause of death was Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Born on January 28, 1951, Chris was 54.
Chris was a sardonic wit, churning out hip but incisive columns on the music scene with an unwavering eye for the next hit and side-splitting digs for the less-than-prime time. Chris covered the Jersey Shore Music and Art Scene for 20 years and used an iron stick with which to hold new artists in measure with their brethren and sisters. He was just as apt to thrash musicians he deemed unworthy as to elevate those he approved. As recently as 2003, Chris was running acts at the Pony and other shore venues.
Chris' commentary on the music scene also appeared in The Atlanticville, Pipeline, East Coast Rocker, Off the Wall, By The Sea, Red Bank Register, Red Bank Voice, Relix Rock!, Good Times, Two River Times, Shorelines, MBCBS XPress, Wall Herald, Nitelife, Eclectic, Asbury Park Press, McLaughlin's, NJ News/Shoreview, Fred's Papers, NJCoast.com, and The Coaster.
Chris found Restore by the Shore (now Asbury Radio) and wrote to us, using his "Lone Paranoid" moniker. He frequently called in and, behind the scenes, suggested new talent for us to showcase. Chris encouraged our efforts to stimulate a dialogue on Asbury's waterfront plans. On June 18, 2003, Chris made his support for us public in his column, 'ShoreWorld', which appeared in The Aquarian and local entertainment sections, such as Fred's, calling us, "the New Voice of Asbury Park and the world beyond it..." He noted our show on film and our eclectic guests. He was the first to win our first t-shirt.
Last year Chris fell into a physical and mental depression after losing his beloved mother, who lived with him in Ocean Grove. He needed round the clock care at a nursing facility, but was anticipating his recovery and making plans to move into my basement apartment and establish a base there while house hunting. But each time he made plans to stay over, health problems held him back.
Just last week Chris left a voice mail about how we might collaborate on a new writing project. He was eager to resume work on his novel in progress. So it came as a great shock to learn of his death yesterday (May 8, 2006). This man of letters has left us without so much as an obit. His remains were cremated. No funeral or formal services were held. Sources say friends are planning memorials individually. If you'd like to gather for a memorial, please call me at 732-774-0779. Of course we'll remember 'the paranoid' on the air this week.
As Chris liked to close his column, "Meanwhile, (Chris) see you when the sun returns..."
Maureen Nevin, Host, Asbury Radio