State Of Shock

Who was State Of Shock?

It was a hot, rainy day when it all began. Three virtuoso's and a lead screamer crammed into a small, dark basement in a St. Louis, Missouri suburb, making music together. After months of gigs, with lukewarm reviews over the quality of their singer, Bobby, Curt and Neil made the ultimate decision. They fired their screamer, and created the Power Trio, State Of Shock.

In the spirit of such notable acts of the day, such as The Police and Rush, State Of Shock began their struggle to make their mark on the music industry in 1983 as a Power Trio. That summer, the group departed to a recording studio in Chicago for their first recording session. With the help of producer Russ Kirkland, State Of Shock emerged from recording with their Debut EP, Too Close.

Too Close was distributed to more than 500 radio stations all across the country, and began getting airplay, mostly at College Radio. At the same time, State Of Shock began playing gigs throughout the region and began building a loyal fan base, and garnering rave reviews from their festival and club performances. Hitting the College Radio charts for the first time in 1984, State Of Shock seemed to have everything a record label would need to make a deal. Three talented musicians making great songs, with the support of radio and their fans. Yet the industry failed to take notice.

State Of Shock continued their long grind. In 1985, they recorded a new single, Sweet Surrender b/w Can I Make You Mine. That same year, the band put together their first Music Video for Sweet Surrender, and released it to the industry. More than 30 regional and national video outlets aired Sweet Surrender, including USA's Night Flights video show. College Radio warmly accepted Sweet Surrender, by placing it in the charts in the fall of 1985. Still again, the record labels failed to take notice.

Undeterred, State Of Shock released their third and final single, You Can Do It b/w Suzannah in the spring of 1987. Once again, College Radio threw their support behind the band, with Suzannah peaking in the Top 40. With an ever growing fan base, as well as more than 100 great songs in their catalog, you would think that someone in the music business would covet the untapped potential of State Of Shock. However, file folders full of rejection letters came from every major label and many of the independent labels the band submitted material to throughout their career.

It seemed that no matter how much progress the band made, in their songwriting, in their live performances, in their growing fan base, and their nationwide radio airplay, the music industry offered no support for this incredible talent. While Bobby, Curt and Neil continued to write music and played occasional gigs together as late as 1998, State Of Shock eventually gave up. Despite their talent, rave reviews, airplay and exposure for more than 15 years, the band finally broke up... for good.

It has been said over the years that State Of Shock was ahead of their time. That their music then, can be heard in the music of today. Fellow musicians that have heard State Of Shock, raved over their songwriting and their performance styles. Those few "signed" artists that crossed State Of Shock's path in the day, have brought pieces of State Of Shock with them on their own road to success.

Bobby Jones has been touted as one of the nations top drummers, period. Neil Jaeger's innovative guitar sounds from the early eighties, echo in the ears of modern rock listeners today. Curt Shaw's virtuosity on bass, as well as his animated presence on stage made him a fantastic front man and a favorite with the ladies. All three of them created music so good that one wonders why these guys didn't make it.

State Of Shock had everything a band needed to achieve stardom with the exception of one thing: A record deal. However, the recording industry at the time just didn't take State Of Shock seriously. So 24 years of anonymity has seemingly buried this musical treasure as one of the "could have beens".

Bobby is now semi-retired, living in Florida, and still plays his drums every day. Curt has joined a Elton John and Supertramp tribute band, enjoying the crowds in the thousands whenever he plays. Sadly, Neil Jaeger passed on July 19, 2012. He was one of the greatest guitar players I have ever known, and the first person to spark my passion for the music industry. His music shall live on here...

Catch State Of Shock's music airing in our Throwback Rotation on


  • Posted June 13, 2024 6:41 PM 0Likes

    Well written and exactly how it happened! The greatest band that never was!💜💜💜😎🤓🤩

  • Posted June 15, 2024 1:03 PM 0Likes
    Steve Jaster

    If only that one person gave us a shot…🤔 What could have/should have been…

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