Tom Jeffers

The Group

Tom has been a member of Dandelion Wine for over twenty years.

Photo: Tom Jeffers

He first met the band (then known as Prairie Wind) when they were playing a gig, and his friend elbowed him and said "You should be a part of a group like that." The next day at work, Tom bumped into one of the group members, who invited him to come play with them the following night. The band needed a bass player, and although he really didn't play bass, Tom was happy to go jam with the group. At the end of their practise session, Dave told Tom to learn about fifty songs. Tom was confused - what were they asking? They told him they wanted him to join the band! "But I don't play bass!" Tom replied. "We know" said Dave, "but you can learn, and we like you."

So he called his friend back and said "You know that group you thought I'd be good with? Well, now I'm a member of the band!"

Over the years the group changed, Cheryl left and so did John. At Tom's retirement party in 2006, the whole band was there and were talked into performing some of their old favourites, and even though they hadn't played together for over ten years, they never missed a note.

Tom still enjoys singing and playing with Dave, and they can often be seen together in late night filk circles.

Recording

Over the last year or two, Tom has been working on recording the new Dandelion Wine CD, The Face on Mars. His recording studio is located in the second tiny bedroom in his condo. When Dave comes from Winnipeg to perform, he has to move his suitcase to the living room to make space for the microphones! Several popular filkers will be heard singing and playing on the CD, including Heather Dale singing harmony with Dave on her song As I Am, Jodi Krangle singing harmony on her song The Lady, along with other artists from the U.S. and Germany.

Personal History

Tom was born in Thunder Bay, Ontario and moved to Manitoba at a tender age. His father was a station master for the railway, and Tom grew up in train stations.

As a teenager, Tom's older brother handed him a guitar, taught him a couple of chords, and said, "if you don't learn to play these, I'll take the guitar back". Since the Beatles were the ultimate influence on a young guitarist in the sixties, Tom taught himself to play all their songs by ear. (Well, sometimes he plays with his teeth - but he cheats. He's really playing with a pick held between his teeth!) He likes to talk about his (long gone) youth, and his tight leather pants and long flowing hair (also long gone!) He wore purple shirts and a Ringo hat. I really wish there were pictures from back then!

Tom worked for Manitoba Hydro for thirty odd years. For many years he hosted a radio show called Prarie Ceilidh, and he would play filk songs as often as he liked. Talis Kimberly was a guest. Urban Tapestry appeared live on the show when they visited Winnipeg, and the ladies surprised him by singing "Hey Tom Jeffers", a song about him, on the air. Since then they have held a friendly contest to see who could top the other. I think he, Dave and Walter won the contest with their tribute group Suburban Travesty.

Tom retired in 2006, moved to Toronto, and shortly after married Sue Posteraro who is a Toronto area filker. The two formed the musical duo The Stone Dragons. Tom has also joined the Toronto area filk group, attends most house filks, and helps out at FilKONtario every year.

Instruments