Mike Morris is the founder and leader of the Time Trax Band. Born into a family of professional musicians, there were always instruments in the house to play and plenty of band practices going on to influence Mike as a child. “Not knowing any different I just picked it up because that’s just what everyone else in the house was doing” said Mike. As a little kid, Mike would play whenever possible, sitting in with his parent’s bands, doing school talent shows, playing school dances, and performing at kid's birthday parties.
By 12 years old Mike started appearing as a guest performer in the “Hall of Fame Show Band.” With mouse ears and all, he impersonated “Cubby” from the original Mickey Mouse club. “I’ll probably never live the mouse ears down,” said Mike, “but I made $15 bucks for playing two songs and I got free pop”. “I did what I had to do”.
During this time Mike missed out on the opportunity to give a demo to a newly forming unknown group called “New Kids on the Block”. Mike said, “I had no idea who they were and I didn’t have a good demo to give them.” “I didn’t know at the time what a huge opportunity I was missing out on.”
At 13 Mike joined Rock-N-Remember on drums, his mom and brother’s band. Mike said they did a lot of fun shows at places like Cedar Point, Geauga Lake, Sea World, and they even backed a few Elvis Impersonators. Mike added, “My mom taught me the right way to do things and how to be professional.”
When Mike turned 16 he joined up on keys with E.T King, a local soul singer who was working steady. Mike recalled, “This was fun music to play and I gained some good experience.” “I also stole a little soul from ET.” “It was really cool that E.T gave a young guy like me the opportunity to play in his band.”
Eventually Mike decided it was time to do his own thing and started the Time Trax Band. It was after a chance meeting with Billy Joel that Mike was even more inspired to pursue music. Mike was in Akron, Ohio checking out venues to play and there at the Hilton, sitting at the empty bar by himself, was Billy Joel. Joel was in town doing a speaking engagement at Akron University. Mike recalls “We spent all night talking about music, the music business, and he even threw a few jabs in about his ex wife Christy Brinkley,” Mike Laughs. “It’s powerful stuff when Billy Joel advises you to do it now while you’re young”.
Mike recalls sitting at the bar with Billy Joel and watching Ray Charles perform on the David Letterman Show. Mike said, “Billy nonchalantly asked me if I have ever played with Ray Charles.” “I politely said no and thought to myself YAH RIGHT. Billy told Mike if he were ever to play with Ray Charles, not to look at his leg. Billy said, “It bounces all over out of time and it will really mess you up”.
Mike and his band Time Trax quickly gained momentum and were soon doing shows for Carnival Cruise Lines. During one of the Carnival tours Mike met Leon Patillo former lead singer of “Santana” who was vacationing onboard and saw the show. Mike and Leon spent a couple of nights after hours jamming on the ships grand piano. Mike recalls “We entertained a handful of night owls and it was a blast”.
One of the cruise ship tours stopped in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Word was spreading into town from cruise ship passengers about the Time Trax band. Time Trax was asked to headline for five weeks straight at Sammy Hagar’s Cabo Wabo Cantina, one of the top 10 concert clubs in the world. While in Cabo the band got to hang out at Sammy Hagars Condo, meet Fred Savage from the show “Wonder Years”, and subsequently meet Sammy Hagar and all of Van Halen.
By this time members of Mike’s musical family were making their own connections. Mike’s cousin Billy Morris landed a lead guitarist gig with the Rock Band “Warrant”. “Warrant” experienced success in the late 1980’s & early 1990’s with two multi-platinum albums “Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich” & “Cherry Pie.”
“Warrant” rented the Time Trax Band RV tour bus for a couple of short tours with Mike behind the wheel. Mike said it was a great experience to see how the rock stars do things. Mike added, “It was a lot of fun and let’s just say that after the tour was done the bus needed a good cleaning.
"Warrant" asked Mike to play keyboards on their sixth studio album "Under the Influence". The album is a covers album with 2 original tracks, "Face" and "Subhuman". The album is also the last to feature vocalist Jani Lane.
While recording “Under the Influence” Jani invited Mike to play a show with him at an area concert club. “Being a fan and listening to his music as a kid, I never could have imagined having the opportunity to play on a Warrant album or perform with Jani Lane” said Mike.
Mike has released a CD of his original music. His ability to sing, play keyboards, bass, guitar and drums, enabled him to compose and perform everything heard on the CD. Mike's self-titled CD includes upbeat dance tracks, "Dance With Me Baby" and "You Put Me in a Trance", along with ballads, "Misery" and "You Are The One". Mike's song "Love Hut" makes you feel like you are on vacation in the sun with an ice cold margarita.
Mike has appeared on radio and TV programs and in 2008 performed live with Time Trax on Fox 8 in the Morning. Cleveland’s number #1 morning news show.
Mike continues to perform with the Time Trax Band and he is looking forward to the road ahead. When asked about it Mike said “In the music business, you never really know what’s around the bend.” “Not too long ago we had Vince Neil from Motley Crue’ sitting out in the audience.” “There are always surprises and It’s always an adventure.” “So far it has been a great ride.”