BEHIND THE MUSIC
Detours and Such
The middle kid of three, Joe was raised in Southern California with his parents, his two sisters, and assorted pets. After about two years of piano lessons when he was a boy during which his piano teacher dubbed him the “golden ear”, he convinced his parents that he would really rather play guitar. His mom showed him a few chords; after that he was off and running. He took a few lessons from time to time (thanks, Charlie and Andrew!) and eventually developed his own style.
Somewhere along the line (hey! that should be a song title!) he also learned to play bass, drums and a bit more piano, and even flirted with the violin and banjo. He helped lead music at church for many years and participated in several outdoor concerts. Both of his sisters are also musical, and there have been many impromptu jam sessions at the Fischer house over the years.
Joe began writing his own songs early in his teens, finding inspiration in relationships, faith, and the challenging circumstances of life.
At the age of 20, Joe’s life took a major turn when he began noticing numbness in his right hand, peripheral vision problems, and was experiencing frequent migraines. He was soon diagnosed with Stage 4 brain cancer, a malignant and inoperable tumor called glioblastoma. The ensuing three years were filled with chemotherapy, radiation, taking daily handfuls of supplements, surgery to install a shunt, and several bouts of aphasia when medication needed to be adjusted. Not exactly the life he had planned, but Joe continued to write and record his music, teach guitar, and look past his limitations to the bigger picture. He continually looked forward to heaven. Joe passed away Thanksgiving Day 2017, surrounded by his family.
Trivia: Joe was a black belt in the Hawaiian mixed martial art, kajukenbo.