Jim Alger Bio
Jim Alger formed A Band Called Spike in 1993-94 while living in Boston after playing and recording with (Alger-Larson) an acoustic duo and (Maniacal Reason) a guitar army that played the New England circuit for years. Jim's music career began in the Fourth grade as the "Little Drummer Boy" for his school play, the rest has been a long road of playing many gigs over the years. Starting off as a drummer, Jim turned to guitar and vocals as songs where learned and he says, "people wouldn't show up on time for practice so I started singing and got some confidence". In the early days in New Hampshire he played with his long time friend Marvin LaFontaine (himself a fine axman) in the short lived "Ignited Grave" and "Soundchaser". Moving to Boston was a big turning point for Jim when as an avid concert goer continued to obsorb as much music as possible. Early influence's without a doubt was the early Syd Barrett Pink Floyd and most British heavy's of the day. The first album that Jim ever bought was "Piper at the Gates of Dawn" by the Pink Floyd. As he says of that experience. "I had a great neighbor who had these new 60's popular underground music that my parents never had. They would let me listen to headphones while they ate there dinner to different music from early Santana, Zappa (a major influence), Stones, etc. I seemed to like all the weird physchadelic stuff later sparking my love for progressive rock. The first time I played "Piper" to my friends in show and tell, which I thought was the best, come to find out it really was my first real alienation from some people and there music. My friends hated it and I loved it and I kept on playing it even though they were playing the Monkees and the Patridge Family. I thought that stuff was my sister's music. Needless to say it didn't go over to big. In the end I was right, look at what the Floyd achieved." " In the early days of playing in bands I was very lucky that we had a place to play. I grew up in a motel that had two ski lodges on the property and during the off season my parents would let the band jam in the Big house because they were just sick of the noise and racket that I was making all the time. I was drumming on everything. Little did I know it was and still is probaly the best rehearsal space we ever had. The girls would hang out all the time and it was definatly what I wanted to do."
My first big break playing in music was meeting the Davis Brothers who had a band called Gryt that had just broken up. I had jammed and played numerous parties and thus but nothing really concrete as far as playing out all the time. The new band that was formed was Maniacal Reason which I ended up playing in for roughly 11 years. Without a doubt it is where I learned the most and sacrificed the most. The memories to this day are ones I will always cherish.
After moving on from Maniacal Reason I joined up with Kurt Larson doing a complete turnaround as far as music was concerned. This duo played mostly acoustic originals before the big unplugged faze happened in the early 90's. At the time I also worked in radio at WBRS as the local program director. The Alger-Larson visigothic acoustic bonaza recorded a few demos at Kashmir Studios in Wilmington under the direction of Bruce Bennett (who went on to form Superdups a cd duplicating company) These sessions are rare recordings of songs such as "Treasure" "Cold Rainy March Day" (which was written for my long time friend Ritchie Goodbout), "Winter Wind". We also did covers by Ian Hunter, Queensryche, and Pink Floyd to name a few. Some of this music was the most personal and deep that I ever wrote in my career. Maybe some day it will see the light of day on a solo album or something.
The days of A Band Called Spike have been, so far the most bazzar. The "G" Man Frank Giannetti was and is the only real bass player that I have known that also knows that I know that you know that I know he knows how to play what I'm playing. As members of the band he and I have seen the most. All the highs all the lows, all the humor that goes into being in a band. Humor is a major power. "new" drummer Ray Chiffy (has been in the band 15 years) has added a driving force of madness and concrete abrasiveness that makes the band tick. Being in a trio is flying without a net. Finding, looking to see how deep the water is, before, you end up in the muck. No doubt about it. Not a bad thing but sometimes it can be extremely intense just by being one of three personalities heading down a very slick unknown road. When I say intense that is what it is. Intense. Energy. Wrapped in a little triangle of noise and expression, we as A Band Called Spike to me is magic. Just a little bit of magic. Not the biggest but also not the smallest. The goal has been to get it correct and also have a blast. That makes me very happy, because I'm having a blast no matter what.
The new band in 2017-2018 is EVERT that from session get togethers in Boston and the band just formed itself. Evert means you got to get in to get out. Evert is a Boston based band with Jim Alger , Joe Packard and Craig Matalon.