Theories - Sullivan T-Shirt - Blue
If Jim Sullivan is a name you’ve never heard before, you’re not alone — he was a talented musician in the late 60's and early 70's who was always JUST on the edge of success. His debut album, “UFO” in 1969 was incredible, but it is not always for a lack of talent that artists do not succeed. Despite developing a large local following in California, fame eluded him. After his second album failed In 1975, Jim decided to pack up his Vollkswagen Beetle with his guitar, records, and his life’s possessions and headed to Nashville hoping to catch a break. But little did Jim know, or maybe he did, that his fate was prophetically already written in the words of his most memorable song 6 years before:
“Shakin like a leaf on the desert heat, His daddy’s got a bog that’s hard to beat Bought me a ticket got a front row seat. I’m checkin out the show with a glassy eye. Looking at the sun dancing through the sky. Did he come by UFO?”
Early into his trip, Jim's Volkswagen was discovered abandoned near a ranch in the New Mexico desert and it soon prompted police to launch a manhunt.
Retracing the 24 hours leading up to Jim’s disappearance, police reported that he had been stopped for swerving on the highway the day before. But after being issued a sobriety test it was determined that he was just fatigued from driving for 15 hours straight. So Jim stopped at a roadside motel and rented a room. But when police later investigated they found the bed had never been slept in and the room keys had been locked inside the room. After an extensive search of the area, not a trace was found. And perhaps most peculiar was the fact that in Jim’s car police found his wallet, appointment book, clothes, reel-to-reel tapes, a box of his recently released self-titled album and even his guitar. But no clue as to where Jim had gone, nor why.
Soon theories began to swirl that Jim had met the very fate he had written about years before, and been abducted by a UFO. To this day 40 years later, Jim Sullivan’s disappearance still remains a mystery. And his most impactful song continues to haunt the imaginations of fans and UFO buffs alike. For a man who left behind as haunting a song and as fatefully titled an album as “UFO”, it’s pretty hard to believe that he would meet such a bizarre fate to disappear on a desert road by unexplained circumstances.