Making a Scene Presents an Interview with Barbara Stephan
She classifies herself as a super nerd.
She geeks out and freaks out over all things Alan Watts, Ram Dass, Terrance Mckenna and Timothy Leary to name just a few. And if it weren’t for the inspirations from these incredible renegades, she might not have had the courage to try to make her living as a musician.
Barbara recalls, “I started singing in church at five years old and performing in my dad’s band starting at 13. He played guitar. I always wanted to go into music, but I had a lot of (well-meaning) people in my life – adults, teachers, etc. – telling me a career in music was too difficult and I would never ‘make it’ and I should find something else to do. I listened for a while, but then just couldn’t stand it anymore. That’s when I started teaching voice, gigging, and writing my own songs along with film/TV music. I’ve always been able to pay my bills. There are so many creative ways to make a living in music, and I am so happy I finally gave in and followed my heart.”
As her long-time fans will attest to, and new listeners will quickly learn, for Barbara, it’s all about them. “I love my life and I love performing music more than I could ever express. And it’s the live shows that really drive me. To meet the people, to be out on the dance floor, to be sharing an evening of music and joy and fun and dancing with people – I can’t imagine doing anything else. I want to write music that brings joy. I want to perform all kinds of music that inspire people to dance.”
Grateful for all the support and inspiration she has on this incredible journey, Barbara wishes to thank in particular her parents and sister for always coming to her big shows and supporting whatever it is she wants to do; her fiancé Matt, who has really taught her the business side of music, which she notes is the most difficult part for her in this whole process – “His unconditional love and support has made this current project possible. I couldn’t do it without him”; Matt’s kids, Maddux and Alyssa, who are a huge source of inspiration and joy; and countless close friends, truly too many to name here, for, “Keeping me on the ground and sane.”
See and hear for yourself why Mark Wimmer, metro-Milwaukee businessman, philanthropist, and patron of the arts, had this to say about Barbara after her captivating performance in August 2018 as part of a summer concert series his firm, Wimmer Communities, sponsors in Hales Corners, Wisconsin: “I have followed Barbara Stephan’s growth as a singer/song writer for years but was blown away by the show she brought to this year’s Concerts in the Gardens at Boerner Botanical Gardens.”