Young Jimmy tried calling square dances in Buck Owens’ San Joaquin Valley to attract chicks (the gold Nehru shirt, purple striped flares, love beads, and two–tone suede shoes weren’t working). His dad traded a Norton motorcycle for a ’51 Fender amp, and a matching (Buck approved) guitar was thrown in. The boots were cool, but he he learned singing Beatles’ songs was more effective.
After five-years in an eastern state of coal, steel, and Nittany Lions, Jim thumbed to LA, then packed his van for a mic-side tour of Pacific coast highway bars. After years in the Humboldt Bottoms, he returned to Hollywood Blvd and learned from Robben Ford, Larry Carlton, Keith Wyatt, and others at Musicians Institute.
After a couple of years bobbing on the Southern California coast, he moved to Portland, Oregon, married, and formed The Working Stiffs with Stan Jones.
Stan Jones – Keyboards & backing vocals
Stan Jones was born into a cultural Electrolux near Clearcut, Oregon. He could barely reach the keyboard when the easy listening music and avocado and burnt orange shags inspired him to play piano… for a while.
Playing in high school bands, Stan learned the limits of a metal balladeer when his bandmates greeted him at rehearsal with the ashes of his Beth (Kiss) sheet music in a charred coffee can on his piano. The trauma led him to play solo, and explore recording with Bob.
Later, as an Oregon State University student, Stan discovered culture beyond Redneck County’s three radio stations. His instructors’ rejection of jazz, and his discovery of the piano’s black keys, led Stan to Germany, where he immersed himself in Euro Pop.
Oregon eventually lured Stan back with a new wife to finish his degrees, get a job, and grow a family. He escaped to Portland, where he again played solo and watched slugs eat algae. It was there that Jim coaxed him to co-found The Working Stiffs.
While Stan reveres Steely Dan, Elton John, The Beatles, Little Feat, and countless jazz and rock greats, some note a distinct Floyd Cramer influence.