Rock and Roll!

Jim's Unauthorized Biography

First Guitar: A Hondo II Les Paul copy from my parents when I was 15. They gave it to me after a concert band concert. They also gave me a 12 Watt Peavey practice amp.

First Band = Agent 13 (First Gig) (Second Gig): We formed this band about a week after I got the guitar and amp mentioned above. Obviously, we weren’t very loud.

Bands of “interest” since...
Bombay Honey (Business Card) (Hair Poster): This was a kickin’ LaCrosse-based rock band with Karl Sather on bass. I left Agent 13 to join this band, and got to play in bars.

University of Minnesota Marching Band: Trombone player as a freshman in 1989.

Jam Science: Recordings actually exist of this all-original band. I still think it was pretty cool.

North of Texas: Winona-based country-rock with Adam Zanzig on percussion. A tight 4-piece combo which was starting to pick up steam when I was forced into retirement.

Kiss This: A variety rock band based in the Twin Cities. It brought me out of retirement, and it’s great to be back!

Biggest Musical Influences: Eddie Van Halen (before Van Hagar), Zakk Wylde, and the great Nigel Tufnel.

Favorite Music Gear:
1975 Marshall 50W Lead amp head: The only real way to get that early Van Halen "Brown" sound. Currently my favorite amp!

1978 Marshall 50W Master Volume amp head: I’ve had this amp since high school. We've been through the wars together. Still sounds great! Currently my backup amp.

1970 Fender Dual Showman amp head: The power amp for my goofy guitar setup. You can't get a better clean tone (if you've got a Strat, that is...). Weighs about 800 pounds.

Two 1985 Charvel San Dimas guitars: I've got two of them now, and will probably end up with more (apologies to my wife). Just great playing guitars with awesome tone and massive 80's vibe.

My homebrew pedal board: Built this several years ago. The alpha test version is still running strong.

My homebrew resistive attenuator: Also built this a while back. The Marshall burnt up the first test version, but the second version is hanging in there. This is the real secret to getting Eddie's early guitar tone (I ripped off his design). I run the Marshall through this and then into the Fender.

MXR Flanger pedal: “Unchained” wouldn’t be the same without it.

MXR Phase 90 pedal: Extremely versatile, musical effect. I love kicking it in for solos.

Personal Anthem: “Grow your hair long and be somebody.” This is historical from high school when I had sorta-long hair. Now I am apparently nobody.

Interests Outside of Music: Triumph motorcycles, geeky computer stuff, iPods, Caribbean cruises, Mountain Dew, Vikings football, NBC's The Office, and my wife and family.

Little-known fact: I was accepted to the Guitar Institute of Technology and planned to go there out of high school, but the finances didn’t pan out. That would have been cool.

Family: I currently live in Rochester, MN with my hot wife and three four well-behaved children.

Special Personal Thanks: There are too many people to list everyone! To my parents for hanging in there with me, Larry Schrader for showing me the light and bringing me out of retirement, my Pastel brethren, Christian Crossings for lending us some practice space, and to my wife for being awesome in every way.