The Mendenhall Experiment
Brandon Mendenhall – Guitarist
Mario Valadez – Singer
Alex Zimmer – Lead Guitarist
Justin Luebeck – Drums
Nathan Stockton - Bass
Born with Cerebral Palsy, an incurable neurological disorder affecting movement, coordination and balance, Brandon Mendenhall faces numerous challenges. With limited movement on his left side and zero mobility in his left hand, the odds were stacked against him from birth.
However, inspired by acts such as Korn and Pantera, Brandon taught himself how to play guitar at the age of 19, rehabilitating his left hand without surgical intervention. “Once I was able to get a guitar in my hands, it changed my life,” he says. That passion for music sparked something in his soul and a dream began to form…a dream that was thought to be impossible: Brandon wanted to play guitar and form a band.
The Mendenhall Experiment was born as Brandon's own personal aspiration to be in a world-famous band while working within the limitations of Cerebral Palsy, knowing full well that the cards were stacked against finding musicians willing to work with him. Possessing a fierce desire to succeed, Brandon went to visit a friend in the rock & roll Mecca of Los Angeles - and never left, pursuing his dream with relentless tenacity and bulldog determination. Failure was not an option.
Formed in 2008, The Mendenhall Experiment also features bass player Nathan Stockton, who overcame a disability of his own - childhood deafness - through the power of music. He and Brandon are joined by brothers Bruce and Mike Lira on drums and lead guitar respectively, plus singer Mario Valadez, who perfectly interprets the band and Brandon’s struggles in his lyrics and vocals while supported by a pounding rhythm section and a face-melting dual axe attack.
Based in Southern California, TMX has been regularly performing on the infamous Sunset Strip in addition to gigs throughout the region opening for the likes of such metal mainstays as John 5, POD, Alien Ant Farm, Kill Devil Hill, Fear Factory, Prong, Flaw, Metal Allegiance, Smile Empty Soul and more. In 2013, the five-piece performed at the Monster Energy Aftershock Festival in Sacramento, CA, sharing the stage with Korn, Megadeth and Five Finger Death Punch.
A breakthrough occurred on June 17, 2014, when TMX made it to the final round of The Battle of the Bands for Warped Tour. After an electrifying performance that left the audience screaming for more, The Mendenhall Experiment took second place. The subsequent buzz reached the discerning ears at Liquid Bit Music Productions and in August 2014 TMX inked a publishing deal with the company, six years to the day after the initial incarnation of The Mendenhall Experiment performed its first show in Brandon's hometown of Kankakee, IL. Shortly thereafter, the quintet put pen to paper again to sign their first development deal with Lucent Records, including national digital distribution through Universal Music Group.