Barry Friedfeld
Some Thoughts About Barry

Barry had one of the longest stints in The Carpenter’s Tools. He played bass and sang harmonies from February 1980 through June 1985. He was an amazing bass player, and unlike the rest of us, he had played professionally. We knew him as Barry Friedfeld, but his "stage name" was Barry Fields. He never talked too much about those days, but at one time he did studio work for John Lennon. He was also an excellent carpenter, and some of his work still remains in other members’ homes. But more than his musical and carpentry ability, Barry will be remembered for his character. He was truly humble, kind and gentle, and he never had a bad word to say about anyone and no one ever had anything bad to say about him.

When I first learned of Barry’s passing, I e-mailed my son Danny, who as a young child often sang a song in our concerts back then, and I asked him if he remembered Barry. He wrote back that “sure he remembered Barry” – in particular three things: First he was the first “Barry” he ever knew. Second, he had curly hair. And third – he couldn’t drive a stick. The first two things made sense, but I asked Danny how he remembered that Barry couldn’t drive a stick shift. He wrote back because he remember that when we had finished loading the bus after each engagement, we would discuss who was going to drive the big blue (Tool) school bus, and Barry never could because he couldn’t drive a stick. Danny, who was 4 or 5 at the time, said he had no idea what “stick” meant, but he figured it had something to do with the bus being long and narrow.

Our hearts go out to Karen, Barry’s wife, and children who sometimes traveled with the Tools. There is also another Tool connection with Barry because Jack Shoemaker, who played drums from 1982-1986, eventually married Barry’s sister Jackie.

Barry was missed at our big reunion / concert. He was the first Tool to fulfill the song we sang so often I Can’t Wait to See Jesus. Some day we will all see Jesus – God just chose Barry to be the first one of The Carpenter's Tools.

Barry's Obituary from The Express Times

Dr. Barry J. Fields PEN ARGYL Dr. Barry J. Fields, 65, of Pen Argyl, PA, went home to the Lord, Friday, April 7, 2017. Born Sept. 24, 1951, in Newark, NJ, he was a son of the late Irwin Sheldon Friedfeld and Adele (Friedman) Langone. He and his wife, Karen (Marciniak) Fields, celebrated their 45th wedding anniversary on Dec. 25, 2016. He co-founded The Father's House Christian Fellowship in 1997 with his wife, Karen, where he was currently serving as Senior Pastor. Pastor Barry retired in 2013 as the owner and operator of BKF Contracting after 35 years in business. He graduated from Edison High School in 1969 and received a Doctorate of Divinity from St. Thomas Christian College in 2007. Pastor Barry loved his church and his church family, spending time with family and friends and music. Surviving in addition to his wife, Karen, are two sons, Eric John Fields and his wife, Corrinne Ann, of Pen Argyl and Jamie P. Fields and his wife, Jessica Michelle, of Bartonsville; three sisters, Jackie Lee Shoemaker and her husband, Jack, of Easton, Karen and Jill Friedfeld, both of Hollywood, FL; nieces and a nephew, Stephanie and Daniel Shoemaker and Amy and Jessica Marciniak. A Celebration of Life Service will be held at 7 p.m. Friday in The Father's House, 1650 Lehigh Street, Easton. Arrangements are by the Strunk Funeral Home, Inc., Wilson Borough. Offer online condolences at www.strunkfh.com. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to The Father's House, c/o 580 Victoria Court, Pen Argyl, PA 18072. Strunk Funeral Home, Inc. 2101 Northampton St. Wilson Borough, PA 18042 (610) 258-7211
Published in The Express Times from Apr. 11 to Apr. 12, 2017