From: TX, United States

Country, Folk, Blues

Born in Salem Oregon in 1954, JB Clark was raised in Southern California until the age of 11 when his mother passed away. The family then moved to St. Louis, Missouri

“My dad gave me my first guitar for my 14th birthday. Except for the time I was in Vietnam, I’ve never been without a guitar since. It was an arch-top jazz guitar. I think it was a, "Recco". The action was extremely high.”

JB joined the Air Force at the age of 17. JB recalls, “In ’73 I bought a Yamaha FG-230, 12 string in Okinawa. That was a darn good guitar.”

JB also spent a brief tour of duty in Vietnam and Thailand.

His first musical gig was with a friend at The Zodiac Room while stationed in Duluth Minnesota in ’75. “That’s the year I turned 21, and I was performing regularly at the clubs on Base and in town. Life was GOOD. I had purchased a Montgomery Ward 6 string and used it for my first gigs in Minnesota and Alaska.”

After Minnesota, JB was sent on a one-year assignment to Galena, Alaska. He played in and put together bands that were constantly losing and gaining members who were completing or starting their tour of duty.

JB then served in Aviano, Italy. “I had purchased the PA from the band in Alaska. I got my first civilian gig in a bar off-base called Da Bepi’s. The best advice ever got was when the owner said, ‘Don’t try to be so perfect. If they wanted perfect, they’d put money in the juke box.’ I started hamming it up a little more, and the response was remarkable. Two brand-new Shure microphones didn’t hurt, either.”

“I then purchased my first Ovation guitar; a custom Balladeer, deep bowl, with a dark brown sunburst finish. That guitar was SAWEET.”

“The first song I learned to play was, ‘Blowing in the Wind,’ by Bob Dylan. The first song I learned to fingerpick was, ‘Puff the Magic Dragon.’ My first tunes were mostly folk songs and tunes by Paul Simon. My favorite kind of music would be what I call Folk-Rock like Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. I also like blues, rock and country and classical guitar.

The performers who have influenced me most are:

Paul Simon

Gordon Lightfoot

Harry Chapin

John Denver

Bruce Springsteen

Jimmy Buffett

Jim Croce

Cat Stevens

“In 1974 I bought my first car; a 1966 Chevy Impala Supersport with a 283 V-8 engine. It was metalflake green with a black vinyl top. What a car! However, it burned more oil than gas. I traded it in when I bought my first brand-new car in ’75 with the money I got for re-enlisting. That car was a ’75 Corolla SR-5. I kept it for only a few months before I bought a ’74 Dodge Van. I wanted a van for my music gigs and also for partying.

While in the Air Force, JB was a security forces and law enforcement supervisor. Some of his achievements were Honor Graduate and Academic Achievement Award from the Noncommissioned Officer’s Leadership School, Honor Graduate from U.S. Air Force Law Enforcement Academy.

“I left the Air Force in 1979 and stayed in Italy. I was planning on becoming a full time musician. But then I got married and had to find a “real” job. So, I spent the next 25 years working in radio communications in various parts of the world. I was employed by various companies such as Motorola, Navigation Solutions, Radio Contact Corporation, and the United States Air Force as a civilian.”

“Some of the responsibilities I had was supervise 50 technical personnel at one time, project management, region supervisor, senior technician, communications technician, to name a few.”

The problem was, I wasn’t happy and didn’t know why until I started playing professionally again in November of 2003. I had a steady gig for 2 nights a week for 18 months and I was hooked. I love performing, and I love the people I meet. Now I’m doing what I ought to be doing.

“Like many Baby-Boomers, I have been downsized, outsourced, divorced, uninsured, unemployed, Enron-ized, and pension-less. But, I have always held up my end of the bargain, and always will.”

“I’m baaaaaack!!!”