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In 1984, as a bass player in Jeff Larsen's Sanctuary, (featuring drummer Rob Taurus), J.J. Merciless began a musical odyssey which continues to the present day. Re-issues of "J.J. Merciless' Wicked Witch - Olde Smoke" 2011 Modesty Records, and J.J. Merciless' Wicked Witch - Lovecraft" 2011 Modesty Records will soon be available on CD for purchase featuring many never before released bonus tracks, additional artwork, and exciting future releases are pending.
Founded in April, 1986 under the name E-Z Access, J.J. Merciless, Colleen Darrell, Cort Christian, and numerous Long Island based drummers and guitarists played their original music for years through out the tri-state area.
In 1988 they changed their name to Wicked Witch, and played favorites from Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Motley Crue, and others. The band was always well recieved by audiences, and eventually recorded "Olde Smoke" at Dare Studios in Deer Park, New York. This inaugural cassette was released in 1993, independently on Modesty Records with J.J. Merciless as producer.
In 1996, after four years playing the Florida metal scene with a version of Wicked Witch featuring J.J., Colleen, Danny Sipi, Jeff Moze, and "Louisiana" Mike Andrepont, J.J. returned to Long Island and reunited with old bandmate Mike DiDomenico from E-Z Access and Necromancer. At Mike's home studio, two records of material was captured in three months with Mike playing drums, guitar, and keyboards.
" J.J. Merciless' Wicked Witch - Arch Rivals" was released o Modesty Records in 1997 containing the single "Heaven In You", and some outtakes from "Olde Smoke".
Their third CD "Lovecraft" was released in 1999 on Modesty Records with the single "Arielle's Song". The touring band featured Cliff Smith from Dreamer Deciever, J.J., and Rob Taurus on drums and vocals.
In 2006, a five song CD titled "Vol. 4" was put out as a result of sessions begun by Cliff at VUDU studios in Freeport, New York, in 2000. This band featured Dennis Sadlo from Winterspell, J.J. Merciless, Rob Taurus, Johnny Wildchild, Mike DiDomenico and "Rockin'" Ralph Ruiz. This was Modesty's fourth offering, and this band played shows featuring covers and originals from their fourteen year catalog including "The Trooper", Torture Chamber" and "Children Of The Sea".
J.J. Merciless at this time is in the studio working on four projects. "J.J. Merciless - Unwritten" a collection of covers from past line-ups, "J.J. Merciless - Titanium" rare and live original tracks from past line-ups, "J.J. Merciless - Knight Monster" a full length all original collection featuring guitarist Cort Christian, and drummer Steve Samuals, from Florida sessions in 1993, and "J.J. Merciless - Badman's Territory" a brand new recording.
Garth Conan has been named VP of Modesty Recods effective February 10th, 2011. Concert appearances are being scheduled, and various websites are currently detailing activity . - J.J. Merciless
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