I was born in Blackfoot Idaho in 1974 to a sixteen year old Hispanic migrant worker. I’m not really sure how or what to say about my youth accept it was very turbulent. I did not meet my biological father until I was fourteen, and wish now that would have never have taken place. I had a few step fathers. I was starved, beaten, tortured and abandoned. I guess what people should really know about the boy I was is that my will could never be broken. I feared no man and many times paid a high price for standing up for myself and those around me. All of those things made me who I am today. I was always a quiet observer of the way of life. Looking back I seemed to experience life very differently than most around me. I always searched for meaning and understanding. I enjoyed being around people and was good at connecting with them. I have always been a very good listener. I seem to hear what people mean even over and above what they say. The thing I liked most growing up was solitude. I liked to fish alone for days by myself play pool alone with my own thoughts and still today truly love those things. I was in a bad relationship for most of my late teens to early twenties. During this time I lived very much in the box. I worked hard and gave everything to her. When I stopped giving to her, she left. I began to change and I was finding less value in the material world and more value in experiencing the real world away from fakes and fronts. As that relationship was ending I flushed a small chain of insurance agencies down the toilet and went on the road teaching pool. I had studied the game under the very best minds that were available and gained a certificate from the Billiard Congress of America as an Instructor. I have been coaching and teaching in this sport for more than a decade. I truly excel at this as many of my students or coachee’s as I would call them have excelled to the very top of the sport. I have never won a Pro event myself as I think too much for sure. Being a coach helped me to understand how much people are really mostly alike. Our wants, desires are alike. Being a coach has helped me be able to be a better song writer. I have since returned to the home I purchased at age nineteen in Idaho Falls Idaho. I’m in a loving relationship and have found with love and support all things are possible. As for singing only just a few short months ago I realized there was a potential for me to sing. These songs are observations and experiences in my life. I have been singing (in the shower) for my whole life. Everyone told me I was a terrible singer. I say everyone that would include my family. I realize now that I just have a unique style that not everyone will appreciate. I tried karaoke a few times but never really enjoyed the waiting and waiting just to sing. It seemed silly when I could just sing by myself to whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. Some of my earliest memories involve me wanting write my own songs. I most certainly wanted to sing them. I was told so often that I sucked that I gave up on singing and just kept trying to write. The truth is I was never able to put words together the way I wanted to. In the late eighties or early nineties I worked a summer job with a best friend by the name of Shawn. He lived around the corner from where my mom lived. I helped him move pipe at the middle school in Blackfoot Idaho. Something I discovered about Shawn is his ability to make rhymes and just make up songs at will. The way he would put words together was amazing to me. Most were funny but still very impressive. Something I never said out loud to anyone especially not him is that I was so very envious at the way he was able to do that. I wanted to be able to do that more than I wanted to wake up in the morning. I would have given my soul to write a good song any good song. Shawn killed himself in around ninety one or so at the age of sixteen. When someone close to you does that, time seems never to move forward it’s just frozen right in place. Shortly after his death I picked up a pen and for the first time in my life was able to put words together in a special way. The way Shawn did. Something I have learned the hard way in life is that no matter what we need, we have to be honest with ourselves. I never had that talent until he died. I truly believe that somehow when he passed he gave me his gift. It was something only I would truly know and understand making it even more special. It was his way of telling me that he was gone but not gone. When my producer and truly beloved coach Dan started giving me kudos for being this great song writer it hurt deep knowing that it was a gift and how that gift came about. I had to tell him the truth about how and why. So this voice I have now been given is accepted with great humility and great sorrow even still today I would just rather have Shawn back. Some of my most meaningful songs I have yet to share. It’s hard I experienced suicide again two more times later in life within my own family. They were both very close to me. One was a brother the other closer than a brother. They are all three buried in the Blackfoot cemetery a stone’s throw apart from one another years apart but together all. My name is Jason James. Poet, outlaw, survivor; somehow I live to tell these tales.