I'm a musician who believes in playing what you feel rather than playing mechanically. That doesn't mean that you throw structure oput the window. I have been in many different kinds of groups and I think that my tastes in music change, often from day to day. I used to play in pop rock bands in the '80's and early '90's in the Southeast U.S. and Southwest U.S. (bands Vessel, Glassheart, Maxx, and Vandal)and I spent the last several years in a progressive rock band called TANGENT (also known as Tangent Machine). All in all I enjoyed the creativity of the Prog-Rock band the most. I once played in a jazz ensemble (sax, keyboards) in college and I learned that playing the unexpected chord or note or scale often leads to some wonderful progressions in songs. Right now I am writing and recording alot. I also am planning to form my own band soon with original music. I love RUSH, DREAM THEATER, QUEENSRYCHE, KANSAS, DIXIE DREGS, BLACK SABBATH, ZEP, STYX, KISS, MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA, FRANK ZAPPA, JOURNEY, GENESIS (the old stuff), and EMERSON LAKE & PALMER. I play different instruments and I am primarily a vocalist (sort of a high tenor with shades of Steve Walsh or Steve Perry even). I play the keyboards (I love piano and I have a huge synth rig of ancient boards. But they rock!), sax (I'm no Wayne Shorter), guitar (I can keep up but I won't say I'm a guitarist), harmonica (just the basic blues stuff, I'm no John Popper), and I play various percussion instruments onstage as needed. I don't wanna be the star and I don't like playing with other people who want to be the star. It ain't about that, it's about making music that is different and that may be remembered twenty years from now. I wish record companies would put out artistic music rather than formula crap. NOBODY rocks anymore except the underground bands. I hate MTV. They just suck. I enjoyed Headbanger's Ball in the '80's and early '90's (although I think one or two of those hair bands got everybody lumped in there together as losers) but they took it off in favor of rap artists...OK, artists is a big stretch of a word to describe rappers. Someday they will remember the fire that was a live rock concert and they will try to evoke those emotions in us once again. Who knows, Music TV might even have MUSIC on there someday! I have recorded and released material with TANGENT on Brainbang Records in 1994. It's probably out of print by now and I didn't see a dime of profit but it was cool. I want to score films (I read music and play by ear)and maybe get my catalog recorded by other artists (Seventh March Music-BMI). Bands I've opened for? Here they are: Stryper, Paul DiAnno's Battlezone, Holy Smoke, Firehouse, Lizard Kings, Sage, Intruder, Asphalt Ballet, Muzzachunka, Whiteheart, Empire, Mr. Crowley, Every Mother's Nightmare, Nailed, Superdrag, Rick Cua, Margaret Becker, Phil Keaggy, Bryan Duncan, Leon Patillo, Darrell Mansfield Band, Messiah Prophet, and I can't remember any others right now. For awhile there I was getting to jam with some guys onstage and Jamie Oldaker (ERIC CLAPTON, PETER FRAMPTON, BOB SEGER, ACE FREHLEY, THE TRACTORS) would come in and sit in on drums for a few songs. I've considered getting into band management and/or artist development. The record companies will someday figure out why they are not putting out enough quality and therefore realize why their profit margins are not what they should be. Then they will want some decent music. Some of the newer bands are OK, though. I like The Darkness, The Ataris, Avenged Sevenfold, Trevia, and . I'm just tired of the record companies putting out the Nirvana-sound-alikes of the month. Too many Pearl Jam-sound-alikes. Oops, Creed Soundalikes! Oops, Nickelback Soundalikes!! Oops, 3 Doors Down Soundalikes. Oops, well you get the idea. Not enough originality. I liked King's X until their singer turned his back on God and announced he was a butt-pirate. Kind of killed my interest in them. My musical soapbox is getting pretty tall here. Here are some pictures from my band days....

My pictures....

Backdoor to the old rehearsal spot in the early '80's.: We had alot of fun there. Should have been arrested a few times. It was me on vocals, keyboards, & sax, with Scott Gross on drums, Marc Payne on guitar, Jimmy Ayers (RIP) on bass, and at various times we had Ron Meredith on drums, Larry Smith on guitar, Larry Miller on guitar, Susan Miller on vocals, and Tracy Marik on vocals. Also Mark Miller on vocals for a time.
The Grand opening of McDonald's in LaFollette, TN, 1980.: Had a blast! I was about to start my senior year of high school. We thought we were hot stuff then.
My band, Vandal, at the studio in 1985. We pulled an allnight session. We thought we were so cool. We learned a hard lesson shortly after this that there are bigger things in life than rock and roll.: That's (l-r, Jim Onks, Scott Gross(standing), Marc Payne, & me (seated)
This is my favorite remote keyboard, my Korg RK-100, at my apartment in Arizona. I used this axe when I opened for Stryper and Paul DiAnno's Battlezone in 1987. Paul DiAnno, for those of you too young to remember, used to be the singer for Iron Maiden. And Stryper used to be a big crossover Christian Metal Pop band with a real hit single or two. : This was from my days in Vessel.
Me at the studio, Pantheon, in Paradise Valley, 1986.: We recorded two songs here which got alot of airplay on Phoenix radio stations.
Vessel, complete in '80's outfits & makeup...we look like drag queens!: I don't know who the babe is but she wanted to get into the picture. We were opening for Stryper that night. Vessel was a good band but we lost direction. We did shows with Whiteheart, Mylon LeFevre, Messiah Prophet, Stryper, Paul DiAnno, Phil Keaggy, Bryan Duncan, Darrell Mansfield, Rick Cua, Margaret Becker, Leon Patillo, and others.

More pictures & stuff....TANGENT

Roy Woodson jams live!
We were opening for Firehouse that night in Johnson City, TN. That was a totally killer show!
A girl in the audience got pretty excited and showed us more than we thought we'd see in Knoxville, TN. Her name is Beth and she is cool with this pic being up here. She is cool period.
Me with Tangent.
Tangent lasted several years and has finally officially bit the dust due to drummer problems! Drummers all want to play guitar. Charles and I have been doing some writing lately so who knows! I will say that Jason Andrews was the most killer drummer I ever played with. Tim Maines, the first drummer for Tangent, was equally killer.
Tangent at the Electric Ballroom in 1992.
I had a cold that night and was on medication, but we rocked! The band consisted of me on vocals, keys, and harmonica, Charles Dykes on bass, Brian Lemings and Greg Marmon on guitars, and Tim Maines on drums. Tim was great too.
Me doing what I love to do...well, one of those things.
One of our early shows, 1992, I think. At Uncle Sam's, Knoxville.
Tangent glossy promo photo.
This was shortly after Greg Marmon left the band. L-R: Charles Dykes, Tim Maines, Brian Lemmings, and me.
Tangent, Autumn, 1993
We had Greg in the band then.
Tangent Backstage '93
Another picture like the last one. We opened for Asphalt Ballet that night. Let's just say that night was interesting. Some stories don't need to be told. Industrial strength panty-hose, tequila, a big car, and ... well like I SAID, some stories don't need to be told.
Tangent 1995
We went through a great deal of change and 1995 was our last year to rock. We just couldn't keep drummers (they all wanted to be guitarists). I was the only die hard rocker left (without a band) so I decided to let it rest. It was a shame because Jason was by far the best drummer I have ever played with.
Tangent Christmas 1995.
One of the last Tangent Machine shows, with Every Mother's Nightmare, Superdrag, Nailed, and other local bands.
Tangent's heydays!
We posed in a junkyard here. My wife took this promo photo for us. We were roasting that day! In no particular order, the band consisted of me on vocals, keyboards, & harmonica, Charles Dykes on bass, Roy Woodson on guitar, Jay Overcash on guitar, and Jason Andrews on drums.
Bra on mic-stand.
We often had women taking their clothes off at our shows and the only thing I can say is that it was entertaining! They only did it when we did this one certain song........
Sometimes I acted like a fool...
Hey I had fun. This was when we first got Tangent Machine going. At rehearsal I climbed up behind drummer Tim Maines and jumped around.
Copiers and breasts and rock musicians...what an interesting mix!
One fan showed us hers all night and even copied 'em for us. Nice little rose tattoo up there on the left one. Must've been something in the water that night! Thanks, Susan.
As Jim Sees It
(Opinions from an opinionated man)
Jim's page
MP3's, do a search for Tangent Machine and for Vessell too! You'll find CD's!
My music and some other MP3 links! Look for Tangent Machine and Vessell on the search engines on this site!
The Crazy Page
Stupid stuff!
Slow Joe Crow
Slow Joe Crow
Seventh Heaven Page
7th heaven Page
Glassheart/Maxx Pages
Pictures from the Glassheart/Maxx days!
100 best bands
Jim's opinion

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