What is the Time Jumpers connection to Wright-Patt AFB?

The road to Nashville took off from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base for Time Jumpers accordion and keyboard player Jeff Taylor.


» The Time Jumpers bringing Western swing

Airman Taylor spent the early 1980s with the base’s Air Force Band of Flight, many nights performing in bands all over of the Miami Valley and even married a girl from Dayton.

He’ll return near those old stomping grounds with the Time Jumpers at 7 p.m. Sunday, April 30, at the Clark State Performing Arts Center in Springfield.

“It’ll be good to be among you all again,” he said.

Originally from Batavia, N.Y., Taylor from 1981-85 served his country and made the keyboard and synthesizer ring true for the Band of Flight. When not on duty, he could be found in bar bands in Dayton and Xenia, playing at high schools and even with a Greek band.

Following his time in the Air Force, Taylor went to work for a Dayton assembly company, putting together bicycles and grills for department stores such as Gold Circle and Kmart.

“If somebody still has a bike or gas grill from the ’80s, I may have put it together,” he said, laughing.

Although he doesn’t think many will remember his time here, at least one of his colleagues at a Kettering bicycle shop he worked at will be at the Time Jumpers show.

Taylor’s versatility would serve him well when he moved to Nashville to pursue his music dreams full time. He’s worked nonstop the past 27 years.

He’s played with country stars such as Martina McBride, George Strait and fellow Time Jumper Vince Gill. But he’s also worked with artists including Celtic band The Chieftains, blues musician Keb’ Mo’, Paul Simon, Harry Connick Jr. and toured with Elvis Costello.

“Nashville is full of guys who were the best musicians in their towns,” said Taylor. “I’ve been really blessed to be part of this.”

He found the diversity of the Time Jumpers makes it stand out. It began as a Grand Ole Opry backstage jam session and developed into a regular Monday night get-together, or as Taylor calls it “our music therapy night” in the late 1990s.

It’s evolved into a Grammy-winning unit, or as Taylor prefers to think of it, a hillbilly symphony. The closeness shows onstage and in turn is felt by the audience.

“The way I’ve heard it, people come away from our shows with their faces sore from smiling. If we can make your face hurt from smiling, I think we did our job,” he said with a laugh.

Contact this contributing writer at bturner004@woh.rr.com.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Springfield Entertainment

Debate settled: This is the right time to put up your Christmas tree
Debate settled: This is the right time to put up your Christmas tree

While it may never reach the level of controversy of how to hang the toilet paper roll or which way to load the dishwasher, the right time to put up the Christmas tree is a heavily-debated household topic. There are answers to this question that depend on everything from Prince Albert to the opinion of tree growers to something called Adelaide...
‘Cosby Show’ actor Earle Hyman dead at 91
‘Cosby Show’ actor Earle Hyman dead at 91

Earle Hyman, the actor best known for playing Russell Huxtable, Bill Cosby’s wise father on “The Cosby Show,” died Friday. He was 91. Hyman died at the Lillian Booth Actors Home in Englewood, N.J., his nephew, Rick Ferguson, told The Hollywood Reporter. Hyman played Othello on stage, was a regular on Broadway and received a Tony...
Foo Fighters, Guns N’ Roses pay tribute to AC/DC’s Malcolm Young
Foo Fighters, Guns N’ Roses pay tribute to AC/DC’s Malcolm Young

The Foo Fighters and Guns N’ Roses paid tribute to Malcolm Young, the AC/DC rhythm guitarist who died Saturday at age 64. Both bands dedicated songs during their respective concerts to Young, who died three years after being diagnosed with dementia. The Foo Fighters opened its concert in Mexico City’s Corona Capital Festival with a blistering...
Country music Hall of Famer Mel Tillis dead at 85
Country music Hall of Famer Mel Tillis dead at 85

Country Music Hall of Famer Mel Tillis died early Sunday morning in Ocala, Florida, according to his publicist, Don Murry Grubbs. He was 85. In his six-decade career, the singer recorded more than 60 albums, had three dozen Top 10 singles and wrote several hit songs that are now regarded as classics, the Tennessean reported. During the 1960s,...
Watch: Chance The Rapper spoofs NHL in ‘SNL’ skit
Watch: Chance The Rapper spoofs NHL in ‘SNL’ skit

Chance The Rapper does not like hockey. In a word, he was “cold.” In a hilarious skit on “Saturday Night Live,” the rapper plays an NBA sideline reporter, Laslo Holmes, pressed into duty as a rinkside reporter for a game between the New York Rangers and the Edmonton Oilers. “It’s very cold all around here,&rdquo...
More Stories