Local Spin

Jim Barkley knows cars. But you might be surprised to learn that the local Toyota dealer has also had his share of brushes with musical fame. While Barkley was growing up in north Florida, Tom Petty was a year ahead of him at Gainesville High School. In the 60's, Barkley's older brother Bobby played in the band the Swinging Continentals, who often shared the stage with folkie Stephen Stills (pre-Crosby and Nash days). And legendary rock & roller Bo Diddley, who lived outside Gainesville, bought a car from Barkley in the early ‘80s. So safe to say, Barkley knows music too. 

Hey Jim Barkley, what's your spin?

Listening to now: I'm a musical chameleon of sorts. Whatever is playing I generally enjoy. But one TV show [my wife] Iris and I try to watch each week is Glee. The music is outstanding. The plot I can take or leave. At times during the show, which we TiVo, Iris and I will rewind a segment over and over just to listen to a particular song.

Most recent album/song bought: I recently downloaded about 50 Beatles song from iTunes. When I hear a song from my high school or college days, I have a unique gift that allows me to remember where I was, who I was with, what I was doing, who I was dating, etc. This drives Iris and our kids crazy.

Most recent concert attended: Dolly Parton, and she was wonderful. When our girls were married, the song played for the father-daughter dance was "I Will Always Love You" by Dolly. When I turned 60, Iris and our girls gave me an album that they sang and produced in Nashville just for me. The title: "We Will Always Love You.” The lead song which Iris sang solo was Dolly's "I Will Always Love You.”

First concert ever attended: My first concert was in Alligator Alley (the old U of F basketball arena) sometime in the mid-’60s. I snuck in to watch James Brown live. I was maybe 14 at the time. Watching the college girls take their clothes off and throwing them to James was almost as good as the show.

Favorite local/regional act: Iris and I enjoy the drummers on Pritchard Park, and if we happen to be downtown on Friday evening will make a point of walking to the park. Sometimes we hang around and other times just walk by. Whatever the mood brings.

Favorite band/artist of all time: The Beatles. As much because of what was happening in my life at the time as the greatness of their music. The 1960s were a wonderful time to grow up in north central Florida. The Beatles bring back so many happy memories.

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