Local bass player to tour in Russia

Wednesday, September 3, 2003

Once again, the road is calling Stan Sheldon, one of the area's more accomplished rock musicians.

"I'm going to Russia for two weeks -- three, if we can get the gigs lined up," he said, scurrying between some last-minute errands in Lawrence. His flight leaves this morning.

Sheldon, an Ottawa native best known for his bass-playing days with rock legend Peter Frampton's bands for eight years, will be backing Salina-based blues guitarist Jimmy D. Lane during the Russia tour.

Lane, 42, is a son of the late Jimmy Rogers, a key member of blues musician Muddy Water's bands.

"I've been real impressed with Jimmy's playing," said Sheldon, 53. "You can tell he's his father's son, but he can stand on his own, too."

Sheldon's talents are impressive, too.

"He's an awesome player," said Marc Sheforgen, associate director at Lane's label, APO Records. "When he gets into a long blues jam or into one of the Latin grooves that he loves so much -- he's just incredible."

Sheldon, who speaks fluent Spanish, also was a founding member of the popular Lawrence-based Latin dance band Son Venezuela.

"When I was with Frampton, we went all over the world; of course, back then Russia and China were pretty much out of the question," he said.

Sheldon can be heard on Frampton's 1976 classic "Frampton Comes Alive" double album; his picture is on the inside of the front cover.


Richard Gwin/Journal-World Photo

Stan Shelton, an Ottawa native, leaves today for Russia. Shelton is playing bass behind bluesman Jimmy D. Lane.

"That's the biggest-selling live album of all time," Sheldon said. "It's sold something like 20 million copies, and it's still selling."

Unfortunately, Sheldon doesn't make a dime off those sales.

"Back in those days, uh, I wasn't much of a businessman," he said, sighing.

Sheldon said he spent most of the 1990s getting off drugs and alcohol. Now sober, he recently completed a bachelor's degree in environmental studies at Kansas University, followed by a master's degree in Latin American Studies.

When he's not playing music, Sheldon travels throughout the United States, teaching classes on asbestos removal in Spanish.