Now & Then
Originally from Dormont, Pennsylvania, James Tobin has been involved with music since very young. He has been playing, writing songs and teaching guitar for the past twenty years. 'My influences started very young as our neighborhood had ethnic groups who loved their music, so as a youth I heard alot of music from Greece and Italy. Not to mention Uncles who played their guitars and banjos at family functions. As I got older my influences included the Beatles (the Red and Blue albums on 8 tracks) and the Who and moved though a variety of different music. Styles ranging from 70's pop/folk songs (James Taylor, Paul Simon, CSN), southern rock and blues (ZZ Top, Charlie Daniels), hard rock (Led Zepplin, Ozzy Osborne), psychedelia (Grateful Dead, Phish, Keller Williams), gospel (Blind Boys from Alabama), zydego (Dr. John), acoustic folk and the songwriters (Bob Dylan, Steve Earle, Ben Harper). I think I've reached a point now where it's all in there.' He also began playing piano, sitar, bass, banjo and percussion soon after to achieve the sounds he wanted on his songs which were self-produced and mixed for his CD's. Jim Tobin (pronounced 'toe-bin') has been appearing professionally since he and a friend first gave a performance of original songs at Thirsty's (sadly now gone), in Oakland, PA in the early 90's. Soon after he began playing solo at local coffee houses. He also began playing more guitar-based acoustic pieces, which helped develop his finger-style guitar and song-writing skills. Later he discovered Tinker's, a local bar, which featured vocal and acoustic guitar performances. Here he began to hone his performance skills as well as further refine his song-writing and guitar technique. Jim started Tobin Studios, an Art and Guitar studio in 2002. In 1998 he produced The First Ten, his first official release. Jim has continued to release various recordings (Blue, Another Fine Day, Clear Blue Sky, Coconut Monkey) and his latest Now & Then. Jim has a constant need to create and music is his favorite outlet. He is currently performing throughout the area at festivals, private parties, and in clubs and coffeehouses. Jim's mixture of original acoustic songs, classic rock, country and traditional tunes is an entertaining blend of music.