Shelby Jackson is the son of moisture farmers who emigrated to Colorado in the 1980's. His very first job was programming binary load lifters, very similar to vaporators in most respects. He also speaks Bocce.
After leaving the travelling production of Cats, Shelby performed in a number of original and cover bands in Colorado. In the 90's, he moved to New Jersey with a band of outlaws known only as Los Pantalones who frequented a number of Jersey shore bars, playing counter culture music in very stylish trousers, all while riding motorcycles and using somewhat offensive language.
Shelby met Ralph at a monorail exposition ten years ago. Ralph was promoting a new kind of monorail that ran on two rails. While that venture never progressed, the two began playing music at some of the most prominent libraries across the tri-state area until angry librarians requested that they leave, insisting the patrons were there to read in silence.
Shelby and Ralph played together as The Laughing Soup Dish, Kathleen Turner Overdrive, Orange Calculus, Ween and The Chris Bath Experience until finally changing the name to Silent Q. Silent Q has become renowned for great acoustic music as well as fish taco Tuesdays. (Fish Taco Tuesdays has since been discontinued).
Shelby is an experienced singer and guitarist and is an accomplished ventriloquist.
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Ralph Heiss began playing a one string tub bass more than a decade ago. He vowed to continue to add an additional string to his bass guitar every 24 months: he is now up to 5 strings but he already commissioned the construction of a 6 string bass. Ralph has said he believes he can handle up to 8, but then again, who knows where technology will be when that day comes?
Most of Ralph's early history is redacted for national security reasons although the government denies this. He is universally credited with inventing a device that precedes locomotive trains for the safety of cows and other livestock that might wander into the path of a moving train. While the "cow catcher" was more frequently implemented, Ralph's device which ran ahead of the train and attached airbags to the animal was considered a faster solution since the train didn't have to slow down. Now discontinued, the "Heiss" as it became known saved many goats, cows and horses in the years it was in use although most of the animals would moo, bleat or neigh uncontrollably at the sound of a train whistle thereafter.
Ralph began playing musical instruments, technically, before birth as ultrasounds taken during gestation revealed he was repeatedly trying to tune the umbilical cord. Working as an interpretative ski instructor in the Swiss Alps he played for two years with the Swiss Trio of Heiss and Loïc (they never found a third partner). In the 90s, he immigrated to North America and found work playing in a traveling klezmer band called Klezmore or Less. The group traveled by rail from town to town throughout Canada and the United states, earning passage by shoveling coal, a task made more challenging by the heavy coal dust and the fact that they were on board diesel locomotives.
Ralph is a talented bass player covering many genres. His tenor vocals, whether on lead or singing harmonies, raises the quality of the several groups he has played with over the years.
Bryan Hayward was found living in the mountains of West Virginia when a mudslide revealed a passage that hadn’t been open since prohibition. Speaking only a mountain dialect of Dutch, it took a few years before he could speak English. His mountain upbringing made him steeped in folk instruments as well as yodeling (East Coast, not West Coast). When explorers found him, he was living with a pack of bears who begged the explorers to take Bryan away with them, not so that he could live a normal life, but because his constant use of puns. Bears, black bears at least, do not care for puns.
The explorers dropped him off at the University of Miami at Morgantown, a smaller school not affiliated with the State University of West Virginia. There he was taken in, fed and clothed and learned the ways of civilized society. When researchers at U of M@M felt he was ready, they sent him to finish his cultural transition in New York but when the Amtrak train broke down in New Brunswick, NJ, he ended up at Rutgers where he studied voice and a special martial art called Glee Do. Under the tutelage of a Professor David Hartkern, he began to accept the ways of the modern world, and his use of both “verbs” and “bathrooms” was a huge step forward in his development.
Bryan, as he became called as his bear name was unpronounceable, took an immediate interest in women, but as they had no immediate interest in him, he settled for the guitar. First, he would perform as a backup player for small groups who played “traditional” death metal acoustic, but soon he wanted to make his own statement. His solo music found no audience as it featured “alternate tunings” but one night a guitar tech accidentally tuned his guitar and Bryan overnight found a new popularity, and he started playing open mike night at Quaker meetings. Years later he would learn that Quakers don’t have open mike nights but were just really nice about letting him play and sing to them. After some months, the Quakers encouraged him to leave the shelter of their meeting hall and “sow some wild oats” as it were. Though he protested and said he could do that with them, they advised that he needed more than Quaker oats.
With his new guitar and vocal skills, he quickly found work with Tony, Orlando and Don, a three‐piece alternative band later sued over name infringement. Together they would write such classics as “You Want Some of This?” and “You May Be Living On Love (But You’re Scaring the Chickens)” and of course the chart approacher “Daddy, Don’t Make Me Live Up In The Mountains (With Those Bears)”, a somewhat autobiographical piece the band had written before Bryan joined. I know, right?
One day, tired of fame and fortune, Bryan returned to the train station hoping to find his way back home. There on the platform he saw Shelby trying to pull Ralph off of the tracks. Ralph was convinced he could tell how many cars were coming by putting his teeth to the rails but Shelby thought, correctly so, that this was dangerous. After returning to the platform, they happened to sit on the same bench with Bryan. The three struck up a conversation about how ridiculous bears could be about word play and finally learned of their common thread of music. They began playing local meth labs and old abandoned buildings while honing their new style, finally graduating to really nice meth labs and newly abandoned buildings. To this day, the thought of not playing music, for Bryan, is unbearable.
Bryan Hayward plays several instruments, sings, writes music, and is completely house broken. Mostly.