We’ll miss you, brother

James PrestonWe’re saddened to hear of the passing of our drummer and friend, James Preston.

Ever the acerbic curmudgeon, James’ prickly exterior hid a huge heart. James has been playing with the band for many years and was a major contributor to Play It Pretty For Atlantis as well as our forthcoming album. We will miss his keen intelligence, biting wit and world-class drumming. He was an extremely versatile drummer who could play many different styles from R&B and jazz to Rock and Zydeco.

James played with many different musicians including Jon Hammond, Booker T. Jones, Dr. John and Bobby McFerrin to name but a few, and was a longstanding member of The Sons of Champlin.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife and family. We’ll miss you, brother.

Please give what you can to help out James’ family. Donate



  1. Hi Steven,

    Thanks for this touching testimonial about James. I am so sad. I just found out about JP’s passing last night at band practice, and I was shocked, because I hadn’t been in touch for a while and didn’t know anything like this was happening. Thanks for putting this on your site. Here’s to the man who touched so many of our lives in such a powerful way.

    John H.

  2. I am extremely saddened by Jim’s passing. I went to Redwood High with him. We had the same drum teacher, Chuck Brown. Back in the late 70’s I was at Nave’s Bar and Jim walked in and invited me to his home in Fairfax. We played practice pads together. He gave me a nice compliment on my hand position style. We had a beer and then he drove me back to Nave’s. He was a real inspiration to me as a drummer and long time friend. God Bless Jim and his family, Sincerely, George, Woodacre, Ca.

  3. It is hard to see our friend go, unbelievable that the man with unlimited energy would go, it seems so quick. I knew him mostly during his high school years, he was so smart and hilarious – he filled out the SAT test by filling in the bubbles in a geometric pattern – he knew college was not going to be his gig. On Fridays I would watch him drum in his basement, then we would go upstairs to watch Star Trek. He dragged me to see the Dead play in Golden Gate Park, and another time to the Fillmore and introduced me to Bill Graham. I still have the collection of handbills cuz Jim got me on the mailing list. There are a dozen other things I owe to Jim, he has been one of the people who inspired me to do what I do with energy and intention. Thanks Jim, hugs to you, I will miss you always.