Jim Garver

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Jim Garver
Origin Concordia, Kansas
Genres Country
Occupations Musician
Instruments Guitars, banjo, fiddle, piano, percussion, vocals
Years active 1988–present
Associated acts Garth Brooks

James "Jim" Garver is a country music guitarist. Garver is credited with naming the bar "The Oaisis" (after a closed establishment in his hometown of Concordia, Kansas) in the song Friends in Low Places made famous by Garth Brooks.[1] Garver toured extensively with Brooks[2] and as of 2012, Garver has been credited with 25 different albums with roles ranging from musician to composer.[3]


Garver grew up in Concordia, Kansas with his parents, Don and Donna. Garver played in several bands, including the KFDI Ranchhouse Swing Band for about a year, before moving to Nashville, Tennessee. He was working full time as a bricklayer, and playing in a local band, in 1988 when he attended a writers' showcase one night at the Bluebird Cafe and met Garth Brooks. That same week, after learning that Brooks worked at a boot store, Garver went to the store and the two talked music again. Brooks invited Garver to join his band in May.[4] Shortly afterwards, Garver introduced Brooks to steel guitarist Steve McClure, a fellow Kansan, who also joined Brooks' band, now named Stillwater.[5] Within two months, Brooks signed with Capitol Records.[4] Garver recalled, "I originally started out as a fiddle player for him and he ended up liking my guitar playing better, so that's where I ended up." He added, "I was just happy to have a job."[5] In subsequent years, Garver provided backing vocals and played lead electric guitar, acoustic guitar, banjo, piano, and percussion.[6]

During the recording of the song "Friends in Low Places" for No Fences (1990), the sound of someone opening a beer can was picked up by a microphone, along with someone shouting, "Push, Marie!" in reference to Garver, who was at the hospital with his wife, Marie, while she was giving birth. The company that mastered No Fences tried to send the album back, but according to Brooks, "We figured all of it was good luck and should be left in."[6] After the birth of Garver's daughter, Brooks told Garver he understood that he wanted to be with his wife and baby and offered to fly Garver home between show dates.[4]



  1. ^ "On the Road with Green River Ordinance". Washburn University Center for Kansas Studies. Fall 2010. p. 6. Retrieved April 26, 2011. 
  2. ^ Cox, Patsi Bale (2009). "Chapter 13: It's a Once-in-a-Lifetime Thing". The Garth Factor: The Career Behind Country's BigBoom. Hachette oDigital. ISBN 978-1-599-95275-8. Retrieved December 28, 2012. 
  3. ^ "James Garver". Allmusic. Retrieved December 28, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c Samms Rush, Diane (November 15, 1997). "Kansans Love Having Garth as Their Boss: He Acts Like One of the Guys, They Say, But He Doesn't Spoil People, Either.". The Wichita Eagle. p. 9A. 
  5. ^ a b Bates, Michael (October 18, 1992). "Kansans Find Success Playing for Garth Brooks". The Daily Union. Associated Press. p. 22. 
  6. ^ a b Bale Cox, Patsi (2009). The Garth Factor: The Career Behind Country's Big Boom. New York: Center Street. ISBN 978-1599950990. 

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