Jim Sheaks is a native of the Chesapeake Bay region of Virgina. He is the son of well-known landscape artist, Barclay Sheaks, and a distinguished music teacher, Edna Sheaks. Before launching his music and art endeavors, his professional career included a PhD in nuclear engineering from N.C. State University, ten years as a professor at the University of Maryland, and more than 30 years with the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency and the Department of State, where his final position was that of Assistant Secretary of State under Colin Powell. But music and art are his true loves, with a natural talent for writing music for the piano and synthesizer. His first album, 'Fantasies Impromptu', was a collection of 'streams of consciousness', lightly edited pieces, performed primarily on the sythesizer. These 'tone poems' were inspired by people close to him and the many places he's travelled, and they reflect his favorite memories. His new release, 'Simplicity', reflects this theme. However,it was performed exclusively on a Steinway B grand piano and edited in his home studio to provide a more polished sound. In his words for this album: 'All music has basic elements, e.g., melody rhythm, harmony, the variations of which create a rich language which evoke a panoply of moods in our hearts and minds. These compositions use the simplest forms of these basic elements to create moods which hopefully will inspire reflection on your experiences and dreams.' Good listening, and let him know what you think.