Jimmie Van Zant
Jimmie was born in Jacksonville, Florida – a city known mostly in the music circles as “the home of southern rock royalty.” Jimmie’s father: E.C. Van Zant and his brother, Lacy Van Zant is Ronnie, Donnie and Johnny’s father, linking this famous family together. Jimmie recalls his mother having an upright piano at home where she spent countless hours playing gospel tunes. Jimmie began taking piano and guitar lessons back at age 6. Later, in his teen years, he watched and listened to Ronnie Van Zant and the boys’ rehearse in his living room. He became amazed, mesmerized and drawn to their musical perfection. At this time, this musical pairing was known as “One Percent”, but would later evolve into the legendary Lynryd Skynyrd band.
Throughout his later teen years, Jimmie was sidetracked from music and took an interest in fast cars, professional bowling tournaments, and other hobbies. The tragedy of the fateful plane crash of 1977 of the Lynyrd Skynyrd band and loss of Ronnie Van Zant brought Jimmie back to his musical roots. This pushed him to make his own mark in the industry, guided by the lessons he learned from his cousin, Ronnie. He formed his own group and later was signed by a record label, and recorded his first album: “Southern Comfort”, where he dedicated the song he co-wrote: “Ronnie’s Song” as a tribute to his beloved cousin, which he is still demanded to play on tour. Jimmie never looked back and continued to tour with his dedication and drive for the music, performing over 200 shows a year, delivering each performance with a vengeance.
Zohra Van Zant
Zohra was born and raised in South Jersey. As a child, her and her three sisters would sit and listen to a wide range of music with their father. From R&B, rock, soul, jazz from the 50’s on up. Zohra, and her sisters, dreamed of having their own rock band someday.
Zohra and Jimmie married on April 12th, 2002 while Jimmie as on tour and has been with him on tour since. As Jimmie’s supporting vocalist, she also shares the harmony with Laura and the two of them have a unique chemistry that blends with Jimmie’s.
Zohra has her own defined stage presence, and stands on her own as a performer and not not only as Jimmie’s wife.
In addition to performing, she also has a great passion for fashion and plans to start her own clothing line in the near future.
Laura was born and raised in Scottsdale, Arizona. As a child she began singing very early and begun acting in theatre, where she performed in several plays across the country. She is also known as being a contestant on the well-known American Idol series in 2010.
Laura met Jimmie and Zohra in 2006 while performing together with a Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute band in Arizona. Later on, she was chosen by Jimmie, over several others, and asked if she would like to be a support vocalist with Zohra. Today Zohra and Laura stand side by side belting out warm and soothing harmonies that help lift Jimmie’s vocal style to its own level.
Laura’s passion and desire comes through her performance on stage and is well balanced. She too has her own spotlight as an artist, and not just as a background singer for Jimmie.
As a child Dave Camarda was introduced to many instruments including sax & keyboards. But it wasn’t until a motorcycle crash, at age 14, that Dave started taking music and guitar seriously. At age 18, Dave made his first dollar for playing music… (Actually it was $20). In the mid 80′s he opened Pine Audio Recording and also started doing session work as a guitar player in Buffalo & New York.
Dave has appeared on more than 75 artists records and has and at least 2000 Spinal Tap moments!!!
Dave joined the JVZ band in 2007. On his off days you will probably find him messing around with music in the studio.
Jay Theodore McGurrin has been a premier drummer for over 25 years on the national circuit as well as the local music scene in Buffalo, N.Y.
Jay is considered one of the best drummers in the business. He started playing drums at the early age of five and prides himself as a self taught drummer, who quickly developed a style from influences such as: Neil Peart (Rush), John Bonham (Led Zeppelin), Mitch Mitchell (Jimmy Hendrix), Ginger Baker( Cream), Buddy Rich and Gene Krupra.
Jay brings more to the table then just his aggressive drumming style. His “play by ear” approach has rewarded him with a natural ability to be an asset to every group he plays in and within various musical styles.
Jay aspires to drive forward and work hard to enjoy continued success in his musical career. Currently he is touring with National Recording Artist Jimmie Van Zant where Jay is the anchor of the stage performances. This includes use of computer-driven backing tracks and click tracks. This allows the rest of the performers to remain in perfect sync with Jay’s guidance. In-between shows Jay also plays locally in Buffalo N.Y. with original group Nix Vega (nixvega.com) as well as managing an apartment building for senior citizens.
Dave Morris grew up in the outskirts of Buffalo NY.
Noticeably the “hillbilly” type (where he states “I am Appalachian American”) Dave got into playing bass at an early age, after playing around with his sister’s guitar. His notable playing ability has been the staple of different bands throughout his past. He has worked with bands such as Head First, Mother May I, Nix Vega and The Release. Dave’s influences are: Mike Levine (Triumph) Rudy Sarzo (Various) and of course Leon Wilkenson of Lynyrd Skynyrd.