The Full Story

About

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Samantha Ashton

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Jim Walmsley

Jim plays guitar and keyboards and does backing vocals in iO, often succeeding to do all three at once.  His earliest musical beginnings were learning piano and singing in a choir.

 

He joined his first professional band at the age of 17 in Christchurch and learned the trade of playing lots of gigs with a repertoire of standards. Later, while at University, he was a member of the world-famous-in-Christchurch R&B, Latino, and Ska band Louie and the Hotsticks. He then came to Wellington to get a proper job.

 

In Wellington he has played in several bands, including Silverline (blues) and Bliss (Kiwi rock). He has also recorded on several CDs, and has written and produced soundtracks.

 

Jim's earlier rock influences were guitarists such as Jimmy Page, Ritchie Blackmore, David Gilmour, Rory Gallagher, Eric Clapton, and Bonnie Raitt, but he enjoys playing any music with guts and energy, which is why he’s perfect for iO.

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Scott Simpson

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Aaron Nonoa

Aaron "Chief" Nonoa recently joined as bassist and has a long musical history that includes fronting the Bliss Kiwi Music Band with Jim. Aaron's roots are funk/soul/R&B playing with his brothers in Grazz,  Bronze Spirit and Nonoa in Hamilton in the 80s and 90s.

With influences ranging from Earth Wind and Fire,  Commodores, through to Doobie Brothers, ACDC and every genre in between he also spent time in rock cover bands Ice 9 and In Wellington played with blues/folk and soul outfits Strange Brew, The Straight Shooters and Fabulous Murray Brothers.

 

He has spent time as musical director and band leader for Tropical Hi in the Whitsunday in Queensland  and played in Japan for a year.

 

More recently Aaron has played on albums for FMB and Shooters and played numerous festivals including the Fiji Jazz and Blues Festival twice, Queenstown Winterfest twice and Lights Festival in New Plymouth twice, and in many clubs and pubs around New Zealand.

 

He is really enjoying the vibe and musicality of IO.  Let's Rock.

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James Shanks

James had humble beginnings as Wellington Snare Drum Champion in 1979, spending his formative drumming years playing in the Mana College Jazz Band & Concert Band.  Under the direction of Rodger Fox, he performed regularly at the Tauranga Jazz Festival.  James also played in covers bands while still at school, and was a regular member of the “2ZB Buzz O Bumble” band with Lyndsey Yeo, as well as the Porirua Municipal Brass Band.

 

James has toured with the overseas artists Herb McQuay, Carter Edwards and Gerry Joe Weise, as well as touring with NZ artists Johnny Devlin, Tom Sharplin, Maria Dallas, Shane, Robbie Ratana, Eddie Low, Bunny Walters, Tanya Rowles, Brendan Duggan, John Grennel, Ray Woolf, the late Ray Columbusand Billy T James.

 

Today James enjoys plying his trade in a more rock-oriented genre, and is very happy sitting in that groove.