WHAT THEY SAID
Every now and again I encounter a singer who gives me a glimmer of hope. Jim Page carries the light.
Jim Page's music is the kind of great theater that makes you sit on the edge of your seat. One of my favorite writers and performers...always on the money, and always amazing.
Jim Page is a lyrical genius with a guitar. This man personifies the word ‘free-flow.’ Page takes to the mic and the song invents itself on the spot; his talent is a natural wonder.
Jim's been writing great topical songs for as long as I can remember, bringing his acute wit and wry humor to a host of subjects that can really use both. In the tradition of Woody and Dylan, he cuts right to the heart with music you actually enjoy listening to. I'm a longtime admirer.
Searing, compassionate lyrics, with an always rightfully placed ironic or humorous note; Jim Page's words, like his music, are for both the mind and soul. He urges us to live our lives to their fullest, and, reassures those who do.
Many songwriters have been an influence, but somehow for me it was out of reach. Jim Page was the one to bring songwriting within my reach. Watching and listening to him make his songs started me thinking about it. Making coherency with words and music, Jim taught me a lesson.
Jim Page’s songs get right to the point. He looks at the world clearly and reports what he sees with compassion, humor and a biting sense of irony. And boy! can he sing and play. If you’re ever going to get the message, this is the messenger to get it from.
U. UTAH PHILLIPS
The best had to be when that wonderful folksinger Jim Page joined the mainstage outdoor closer Leftover Salmon. He strums a few chords to get them started and then they build the melody up. Jim starts to improvise lyrics... And all of Leftover Salmon is grinning ear-to-ear. I’ve seen 1500-plus concerts and that moment was as wonderful a band/audience connection as I’ve ever witnessed.
DUPREE’S DIAMOND NEWS
If Jim Page ain’t the bastard son of Woody Guthrie I’m T-Bone Walker.
JIM PAGE is an American singer and guitar player, a song writer and story teller. He was born in California in 1949.
He got his start in the bars and coffee houses of the lower Bay Area in 60s. The music and artistic experimentation of those days made a big impression, and have stayed with him ever since. On New Year's Day of 1970 he headed to New York City, arrived with a broken fleece lined jacked and 34 cents in his pocket, borrowed a guitar and started hitting the clubs of Greenwich Village. But the scene had changed and he headed to Seattle.
Once in Seattle Jim took the whole town to be his stage. Wherever there were people he would play: the streets, the college campus, the bars, the city council meetings, gatherings of all kinds. He learned that people would listen if you sang about what was important to them. One day he walked into the TV station and said “I’ve got a song you should put on the news,” and they did. Jim would often play from 11 in the morning to 2 the next morning, hitting the rock clubs in the evening, playing 5 in a single night. In 1974, after being threatened with arrest, Jim took on the Seattle City Government to legalise street performing. He made up handbills saying “Jim Page Live At City Council” and posted them all over town. The place was packed and he won. It was a landmark case and Seattle is now open for buskers of all styles.
In 1975 Jim recorded his first album of original music, a vinyl LP called “A Shot Of The Usual,” released on his own label. Two other albums followed in rapid succession. In 1977 Jim journeyed to the UK for the Cambridge Folk Festival. The response was instant and overwhelming and he walked away with a feature in the national music press, two booking agents, and a European tour. He was off and running and spent the next 6 years almost constantly on the road. He recorded two albums for a Swedish label called Nacksving and one for WEA Ireland.
It was in Ireland that Christy Moore first heard Jim’s song “Hiroshima Nagasaki Russian Roulette,” and made it a permanent part of his repertoire. When Christy formed the great Irish band The Moving Hearts “Hiroshima” was their first single and a centre piece to their shows. Jim returned to the States in ’83 and began re-establishing himself as a solo artiste and a player in the Northwest music scene. He experimented with duos, trios and more. In ’85 he recorded an album in Portland, produced by the great Irish musician Micheal O Domhnaill, while up in Seattle he began to experiment with electric music. 1989 saw the creation of the legendary band Zero Tolerance, named after George Bush’s draconian anti-drug campaign. They lasted for three years, made one recording and broke up, as rock bands often do, leading to more experimentation, solo work and recording.
Fast forward to the 21st century and Jim is busy with multiple projects in simultaneous array – constant solo performance, plus various ensemble configurations, leading to more albums. Jim was one of the founders of the Pike Market Performers Guild, Seattle’s first street performers union. They organized and ran the first and only busker festival to be operated entirely by the buskers themselves, and he again petitioned the Seattle City Council, this time to create “Buskers Week,” another Seattle first!
In 2007 Jim was included in an all star list of the “50 Most Influential Musicians In Seattle History.” To date, Jim’s songs have been covered by The Doobie Brothers, Christy Moore, The Moving Hearts, Dick
Gaughan, Roy Bailey, David Soul, and Michael Hedges. He has received awards from Artist Trust, Seattle Arts Commission, and Jack Straw Productions. His music has been included on many compilations, including the Grammy Nominated “Best Of Broadside.”
As of this writing Jim continues to write and to perform and to experiment with form and ensemble, and his songs continue to be pertinent and expressive of our times. To quote the late Utah Phillips: “If you’re ever going to get the message, this is the messenger to get it from.” And Christy Moore: “Every now and again I encounter a singer who gives me a glimmer of hope. Jim Page carries the light.