Oklahoma Thrash Metal act FORTE arrived with the 1990 demo tape 'Dementia By Design'. The band signed to Germany's Massacre Records for the debut 1992 album 'Stranger Than Fiction'. Line up included former OLIVER MAGNUM singer James Randell, guitarist Jeff Scott, ex-LEGIONED MARCHER bassist Ghames 'Reverend' Jones and drummer Greg Scott. Jones had also acted as touring bassist for Arlington, Texas Thrashers GAMMACIDE. Touring would find FORTE reaping valuable high profile supports to acts such as DREAM THEATER, PANTERA, OVERKILL, SEPULTURA, SAVATAGE, WATCHTOWER and FLOTSAM & JETSAM.
The 1994 album 'Division' witnessed a radical change in the band format with vocals now in the hands of Bill Dollins, another erstwhile LEGIONED MARCHER man. The album included a cover version of ACCEPT's 'Fast As A Shark'. Yet again the band scored more strong and diverse guest slots to the likes of FEAR FACTORY, LIFE OF AGONY and YNGWIE MALMSTEEN. Jones would also find time to deputise for GAMMACIDE.
The 1997 'Destructive' record saw another crop of new faces in vocalist David Thompson and bassist Richard Sharp. Another extensive road jount found the new look FORTE opening for TESTAMENT, KING DIAMOND, EXODUS, MACHINE HEAD, SAXON and SKINLAB among others. The band stabilised their line up and cut a further album, 'Rise Above' in 1999. This record would be promoted on the live circuit with an appearance at the 'Powermad' festival and tour work alongside DEATH, TESTAMENT, HAMMERFALL and MANOWAR. Despite the band's obvious progress on the live front and a string of consistent albums FORTE severed then severed ties with Massacre Records. Original singer James Randell made a return in November 1999, commiting to tape the QUEENSRYCHE cover 'Prophecy' for a Frontiers Records tribute album released during 2000.
During January of 2002 the band announced its new line up which now included DREAM KINGS vocalist Kevin Valliquette and bass player Greg Nicholson joining the mainstay inner circle of the Scott siblings. Under their new guise FORTE set to work on a fresh studio album projected for an early 2003 release.
Former member Reverend Jones travelled on to BLACK SYMPHONY during 1997 and was ensconced in the MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP for the German guitar guru's 2001 opus 'Be Aware Of Scorpions'. Erstwhile FORTE bassists Richard Sharp and Greg Nicholson founded THE KILL in 2003, seeing Sharp shift to guitar alongside another FORTE colleague vocalist Kevin Valliquette and drummer drummer Ezra Darrow. By April of 2004 Jones would be pulling road duty with Nu-Metal band FUEL. He fired up a new band project, BARNEY FIFER, in early 2005.
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