By Roz Kohls
DASSEL, MN - Jeff Lindquist, a former Dassel resident and member of the Crow River Band, loves every aspect of music.
He loves listening to music, plucking on an acoustic guitar, singing around a campfire, playing with the band, and especially, playing music with his four sons, all budding musicians, he said.
Lindquist is a partner in a Minneapolis law firm, and lives with his family in St. Michael. His wife, Wendy, also a Dassel-Cokato High School graduate, works as a part-time mortgage specialist.
Lindquist has been involved with the Crow River Band, often called “CRB,” since 1979.
“We are ‘weekend warriors’ in the finest tradition. We try to play about one show per month, performing mostly in small bars and nightclubs in central Minnesota, including Thirsty’s in Dassel,” Lindquist said.
CRB will perform at Thirsty’s Tavern again, Saturday, Nov. 29, he added.
“In the summer months, we love to play small-town street dances and festivals,” he said.
Lindquist had an idyllic childhood in Dassel, he said. His father was a chicken man at Minnesota Hatchery, and his mother was secretary to the principal at Dassel High School, and later, Dassel-Cokato High School.
Dassel was a “great place to be for a kid who dreamed of playing in a band, as there was and still is a fine bunch of local musicians to hang and play with, including the great guys in Cowboys in Sneakers, Back Roads, and the Salty Doggs,” Lindquist said.
“I have been a hopeless tune-head for as long as I can remember. I would sit for hours in front of my parents’ old console stereo, listening to every record they owned,” he said.
Lindquist enjoyed a Bob Dylan live concert election night. He listed Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone,” as his favorite musical selection.
“Bob Dylan’s melding of great poetry, with the primal rhythms of electric guitars and drums, forever changed pop music,” he said.
Lindquist’s love of music led him to CRB. The band was started by Mark and Reid Danielson of Dassel, and Greg Benson of Cokato.
“I was recruited to sing. I could barely play my instrument at that time, and used my guitar mostly as a prop,” Lindquist said.
Brent Soderberg of Dassel replaced Reid Danielson on bass guitar in the early 1980s. Dan Moriarity joined CRB in the late 1980s to play guitar and keyboards when Mark Danielson left the band.
Lindquist said he can’t read music, and that he regrets not taking piano lessons as a child, when his mother offered them. Lindquist calls his singing “shouting-reasonably-on-key.”
“CRB has stayed together for almost 30 years, primarily because the guys in the band all share the same vision, which is, we are only in it for the fun.
“There are no delusions of grandeur, no dreams of rock stardom, no taking one’s self too seriously,” Lindquist said.
“Being in the band is not unlike joining a softball team or golf group except we get paid for goofing around with our hobby,” Lindquist said.
Lindquist added that CRB has endured because his bandmates also are his best friends.
“Have fun first. The rest will follow,” he said.
Lindquist’s first public performance was in a garage southeast of Dassel at the home of a friend who was celebrating her 16th birthday.
“On the opening chord of our first song, a flash pot, basically gunpowder piled on a metal plate that had been rigged by our roadies, blew up in my face, singeing my eyebrows and burning my hair,” Lindquist said.
“Already nervous over our debut, the band was so disoriented by the explosion, that the three guitarists played the first song in three different keys.
“To add to the distractions, there was this beautiful girl at that party, whom I had never seen before. She was the new girl at school. While she claims to this day to have been unimpressed by my performance, she later married me,” Lindquist said.
His wife, Wendy, also was the recipient of a couple of love songs Lindquist had written.
In addition to playing and listening to music, Lindquist likes to write music.
“I also recently helped write a song with my 15-year-old son, Patrick, and his band, Standing in Line. After a classmate was killed in a tragic accident, the boys decided to write a tribute song, and enlisted me to help,” Lindquist said.
“Together, we came up with “Today’s the Day,” which can be heard on the web at YouTube. Search for “YourBudde.”
“The song received more than 2,000 hits in the first few days on YouTube, and it will soon be available for download on iTunes and other online music retailers. All proceeds go to the Annette Leuer memorial fund,” Lindquist said.
Lindquist’s sons are just as interested in music as he is. The Lindquists’ boys are Pete, 19; Jim, 17; Patrick, 15, and Tommy, 12.
At the 2008 Dassel street dance, Lindquist played a short set with a band he formed with his sons, the Missing Links.
“Later, at the start of CRB’s last set, Greg, our drummer, had not yet made it back to the stage. My 12-year-old son, Tommy, grabbed the drumsticks, sat in with CRB, and absolutely rocked on “Twist and Shout,” a rock star moment for the kid, and lasting memory for the proud-old man,” Lindquist said.