Blazer brings the music back home

Nicole Alkens

There are very few people who will throw out a degree to tour with their band. Jacob Blazer is one of those few.

After spending five years earning a bachelor’s degree at Kent State, Blazer left his teaching job to go on tour with his band, Skinny. He was doing more than 20 shows a month and making more money than he would have in his teaching job – life was comfortable.

Fast-forward five years and Skinny is slowing down, Blazer’s girlfriend is leaving him, and “everything just kinda went away.” So, what should you do when things are falling apart? Blazer cranked out 14 songs in six months and made an album close to his heart. This was the birth of Jacob and the Good People.

The Good People is comprised of people who play and practice with Blazer. The two regulars are drummer Joel Lugo and Adam Simms, the bassist and Blazer’s brother.

Although the Good People back Blazer, this is his solo project. In Skinny, Blazer was never a vocalist; Jacob and the Good People gives Blazer a chance to let his voice be heard.

Blazer said his inspiration comes from the awareness of life being short.

“I hate to think that one day we are not going to be here anymore,” Blazer said. “I just try to live hard and drink hard and think hard and love hard and hug hard and just play a lot. And I think that’s what my music is.”

With that philosophy, Blazer produced the Good People album, “Bury Me Standing.” That is the same philosophy he is bringing back to Kent.

Jacob and the Good People is teaming up with Eric Urycki of The Speedbumps to do Wednesday night shows at the Water Street Tavern through the end of the year.

The gigs will also have an advantage for other local bands. The shows allow somewhat of an open mic for a few other bands or artists who would like to perform on the same night. Bands can attempt to set up a performance on any given Wednesday night by simply approaching members of Jacob and the Good People.

There is something to say about a person who reviews and revises his or her life to make changes for the better. Blazer made a promise to himself to make an album that was close to him, and that promise was kept. Now, he’s out showing what good can come from bringing the music home – back to the heart.

Contact all correspondent Nicole Aikens at [email protected].