Eagles bass player Timothy B. Schmit hit the road for his first music tour at about five years old. Schmit wasn’t playing the music; he was on the road with his father, a musician active in the Northern California club scene.
Schmit’s father sold the family house in the Bay Area and moved them into a mobile home, driving from town to town, wherever his band had a show. After several upgrades, the family purchased an "Expando-Home" and settled in Sacramento, where Schmit began his long and winding career in music.
Friday night, Schmit will play a show at the Crest Theatre to promote his latest solo album Expando, which was released in October. Americana singer-songwriter Elliot Randall will open the show with a country-influenced set of rock ‘n’ roll.
For Schmit, there was never a clear path to success. Schmit formed his first band Tim, Tom and Ron, while in his first years at Encina High School. Adding another member, the band became The Contenders and developed a surf-rock sound.
After graduating from high school, The Contenders changed their name to the New Breed, and in 1965, they opened for Herman’s Hermits and Sonny & Cher at the Memorial Auditorium. Heavily influenced by The Beatles, the band drew a local following, and in 1966, they opened for Lovin’ Spoonful and The Yardbirds.
The New Breed picked up psychedelic influences in 1967, changing their name to The Breed and opening for popular Bay Area bands The Grateful Dead, Big Brother and the Holding Company and Jefferson Airplane. Following their final name change to The Glad in 1968, the band lost a large number of fans and Schmit joined the country-rock band Poco in 1969.
During nearly a decade with Poco, which was formed by ex-Buffalo Springfield members Jim Messina and Richie Furay, Schmit scored a handful of Billboard hits. He quit Poco to join the Eagles in 1977. His initial tenure with the Eagles lasted only three years because the Eagles broke up in 1980, but not before one of Schmit’s songs, "I Can’t Tell You Why" became one of the band’s biggest hits.
During the Eagles’ hiatus from 1980-1994, Schmit embarked on a solo career and became a member of Jimmy Buffett’s Coral Reefer Band, then The Ringo Starr All-Starr Band. He rejoined the Eagles in 1994, and has been with them ever since.
For Schmit, Expando marks a return to home. Aside from being named after his childhood mobile home, Schmit’s son Ben plays drums and guitar on "White Boy."
"This is the best work I’ve done to date," he said last month to country music blog The 9513. "I think it’s the truest representation of my music and me than anything I’ve done."
Expando features an eclectic, star-studded lineup of guests including Kid Rock, Gary Burton, Keb’ Mo’, Graham Nash and Kenny Wayne Shepherd. It peaked at #43 on Billboard’s Heatseekers charts.
Tickets cost $25 and can be purchased at www.tickets.com and at the Crest box office, 1013 K Street. The show begins at 8 p.m.