Jim Yoss with The Ben Davenport Band
Jim Yoss has always had an infatuation with the pictures painted by his childhood musical heroes such as, Hank Williams Jr., Willie Nelson and the late Ronnie Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynyrd. He used these legends as inspiration for his own poetic scripts he kept locked away within his heart during his younger years. But a gift of musical talent for lyrical composition didn’t quite fit into the rugged, worn temperament that defines the Appalachian Mountains of Eastern Ohio. Leaving songwriting as a way to make it through his days of driving spikes on the railroad, country music would have to wait just a little bit longer to experience this porch picking, hell raiser.
It wouldn’t have to wait long. As Jim grew weary of a life of consistent, daily negativity, he could feel his affection for music grow. In 2009, the energy generated by being in a perpetual state of creativity drove Jim to pick up a guitar with the intention of liberating the song that knocked against his heart for so long. By August of that same year, the slave driving spike hammer became a momento to a life once lived. Knowing his entire existence would change, he sacrificed a life of financial comfort and plunged himself into a season of musical exaltation. He hasn’t looked back since.
In September of 2011, Jim put behind him the rhythmic pings that echoed throughout the forested hills of Harrison County, Ohio. He couldn’t get to Texas fast enough. Waiting for him was Stephenville, a small college cowtown that skirts the historic city of Ft. Worth. There, The Ben Davenport Band gained the reputation of being a leader in originality with a ruthless work ethic and an unwavering devotion to the roots of classic country music.
What takes some a lifetime to achieve, and even moreso, believe, took Jim Yoss just under two years to see through. In 2013, with minuscule amounts of stage presence, The Ben Davenport Band released their debut album through Lone Star Records. By the end of the year, Slow Start was one of the distribution company’s highest selling records. Savingcountrymusic.com claimed it as one of fifty essential albums for 2014. Trigger Coroneos noted the band as ‘hard edged country rockers’ and the record itself as ‘original’ and ‘diverse’.
Since then, Jim has been touring solo as a singer/songwriter from central Texas to western Pennsylvania, spreading his soul across the U.S. While he still entertains the crowd with little nuggets of the old record from time to time, Jim’s love affair with writing has placed him in an entire new level of musical capability sure to please anyone who gets a chance to enjoy him live. You can usually catch an acoustic show between east and west Texas, as well as a few times a year when he visits his beloved Ohio valley. Check out The Ben Davenport Facebook Fanpage for more information on dates and locations. If you can hear Jim’s notorious stomp from the parking lot followed by a crowd of hootin and hollering, you’ve come to the right place. Grab a Lone Star and you’ll fit right in.