A little bit about the band.
We're a 4-piece band performing in Southern California. We play a large selection of songs spanning many decades. We play crowd-pleasing favorites that you are sure to recognize, and we appeal to all ages. We hope you will share our enthusiasm and excitement for live music. Here's a little about us. We hope to see you soon.
John Gilson, Guitar, Vocals
John grew up on the east coast. He was around 8 or 9 years old when his mom took him along to her guitar lessons at the local YMCA. That's how he got started on the guitar.
Some of his early influences include Frampton, Bad Company, Rolling Stones, Clapton, etc. For him, it was all about the rhythm really. Although he plays an occasional lead nowadays, his preference is rhythm guitar.
His first band performed concerts on the beach, and traveled between south Jersey and Philadelphia, playing high schools, coffee shops, private parties in people's living rooms....he had a blast.
He's still open to playing in people's living rooms...just sayin'.
Jim Welch, Guitar, Vocals
Jim's a native from SoCal. Picture long hair and heavy rock. A friend of his was into music, so Jim says he "had to do it too." His friend was really talented but wouldn't show or teach Jim anything. (some friend) Jim's parents came to the rescue, getting him his first guitar and arranging for him to take lessons for a while. He thinks he was around 14 years old at the time, and he was learning to play anything that was on the radio, as long as it was the heavier stuff, like the Rolling Stones, Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and Cream. He hated country and disco. He was doing gigs at age 20 or so, and joined his first band because "somebody needed a guitar player." He could be seen shredding the guitar at biker bars and pool parties. His goal with "The Amazing Tonebenders" is to sound good and "nail it." He's come around to liking the country music of today. When he's not jamming, he loves anything having to do with the outdoors.
Rick Day, Drums
Rick started out his drumming career with bongos. Yup, his parents wanted to make sure he was serious about playing the drums, so he put in a whole year banging out rhythms on his bongos before he got his first set of drums. He was later asked to join a few bands but he was kind of shy and would hide behind his cymbals. He eventually got permission to carpet the inside walls of his garage and soon word got around that he had a jam room. Musicians started showing up from all over. When he first started out playing he took a few lessons, but he was bored to death. His mom got him a few records and Rick learned his beats by playing along with Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Sandy Nelson's record, "Let There Be Drums." Rick was influenced by the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Yes, Gentle Giant and Jethro Tull. Born in Iowa, he moved to California when he was 3 years old, and he's been playing the drums since age 10.
Ron Ricketson, Bass
Ron started playing the guitar, (yup, not bass), at the early age of 14. By 15, he already had a rock band and started playing out. (Talk about dedication) His first band stayed together and intact for roughly the next 10 years! During that time, somewhere around age 17, he fell in love, no-not with a girl, but with the bass guitar. Blame a Fender Precision bass for that love affair. He saw a new one and said, "That's for me man." Problem was, it was owned by a friend of his. But that's ok. He took to the bass and that's all that matters. He fondly remembers the early years with rock posters, black lights, and listening to Credence and CSN on constant rotation. So you may hear some of his influences if you're listening carefully. Ron's been in a number of bands over the years, playing a variety of rock, pop, country and blues. He's even done some studio work with a few different bands. Now he says he's proud to be a member of The Amazing Tonebenders, but says he has some large shoes to fill.