Jon Justice
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Jon Justice

Cincinnati, Ohio, United States | SELF

Cincinnati, Ohio, United States | SELF
Band Blues Rock


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"St Marys Blues Article"

Blues Challenge Blows Away C&C Audience

Mark Wendel photos

Sunday, March 16 -- Big Worm and the Nightcrawlers (top) and The Jon Justice Band at C & C Loft and Lounge.


A full house at C & C Loft and Lounge was treated to a fantastic blues show Sunday (March 16), in the third installment of the Riverside Bluesfest 2008 Blues Challenge.

Delphos band "Big Worm and the Nightcrawlers" started it off with an hour of scorching blues, rock and country favorites. Band members Dave Liles (guitar), Brett Mullins (guitar), Rick Yates (drums) and Bryan Wireman (bass) proved they are no mere "cover" band; they transcend that name with a top notch act that grabs listeners and holds them down.

The interplay between twin lead guitarists Liles and Mullins was reminiscent at times of the Allman Brothers' Dickie Betts and Duane Allman, and at other times of the Eagles' Don Felder and Joe Walsh. Mullins even threw in a couple of references to jazz guitarist George Benson with scat/guitar "duets" injected into his solo turns. The result, when combined with the solid rhythm section and a playlist well-tailored for the audience, was an exhilarating and satisfying show.

At the break, more than one audience member wondered aloud how the second band could top the act they had just heard.

"The Jon Justice Band" had very generously agreed to perform at this event although being excused from the competition, to introduce their band to this area while maintaining the Blues Challenge's local appeal. Nominally from Cincinnati, this group of four young men is drawn from the states of Ohio, Indiana and Washington, with their lead guitarist and vocalist Jon Justice the oldest at 25.

Although new to St. Marys, "The Jon Justice Band" is hardly new to the blues scene. In February they competed in the 2008 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee, for which they qualified by winning the 2007 Cincinnati Blues Challenge.

In addition to Justice, band members Wade Baker (bass), Eric Manweiller (drums) and Ben Walkenhauer (sax) are serious and accomplished musicians in their own right. Together, they make "serious and accomplished" look like a whole lot of fun.

Performing all-original material ranging from gut-busting 12-bar blues to jazz-influenced rock, "The Jon Justice Band" won howls of approval from the audience with virtuosic turns from all four players and an infectious energy. For example, bassist Baker kept time not by tapping his foot but by bouncing up and down six inches off the stage for minutes at a time. The three others were equally showmanlike, and at the end of the 75-minute set, the crowd demanded and received an encore.

Afterwards, C&C Loft and Lounge owner Charlie Knous commented on the show. "An older gentleman just told me that he never thought he'd live to see the day that he'd see such quality entertainment in St. Marys," Knous said. "He said he was just glad he was here to see it."

The Blues Challenge is a series of one final competition following four preliminary events, with the first place prize being the opening act at the Riverside Bluesfest, to be held at K.C. Geiger Park on Saturday of Labor Day weekend (August 30, 2008).

"Big Worm and the Nightcrawlers" join "M.C. Blue" and "Lady Bird and the Dirty Dirty Earth Worms" (both from Celina) in advancing to the Blues Challenge Finals, to be held at the St. Marys Eagles Lodge on Sunday, May 18, 2008.

But first, one more finalist band will be determined at the Celina Moose Lodge at 1:00 pm on Sunday, April 13. "No Right Turn" from Lima will compete with "Back Beat Blues" from St. Marys for the last slot to fill out the final four.

For more information on the 2008 Blues Challenge and the Riverside Bluesfest, visit

- St Marys Post

"Blue Bonnet Blues"

Beyond the wide-open Texas skies and the fields of wildflowers that come into bloom every spring, there's not much blue about the town of Marble Falls. It's a place where people come to have fun, to play on the lakes and in the hills, to get away from their ordinary lives, and lose themselves for a while in good times.

No matter how beautiful or peaceful, every place has a connection to the blues, to that feeling of sorrow that is just plain part of being human. Marble Falls, for instance, is the only town in Texas that was planned by a blind man. General Johnson was a Confederate officer who came back to Marble Falls after the war, having been blinded in battle, and, with the help of a man who acted as his eyes, used his memory of the place to plan the city it would eventually become.

That's fairly blue, but that also happened a long time ago. More recently, Marble Falls has been able to lay claim to events of an even bluer note.

Tangled up in blue
Two years ago, a few friends got together and realized they had deep ties in common. One of these men was Clifford Antone, whose clubs and record labels were famous in Austin, Texas. Another was Russell Buster, known as RB, who back in the day had built Clifford's first nightclub's stage on a budget of little more than $500 and old lumber from a church in East Texas. The third was Hugh "Blowgum" Vaughn, a master craftsman who just so happened to have grown up with Clifford on the Gulf Coast, in a little Texas town so near the Louisiana border it was hard to tell sometimes which side it was on. It was called Port Arthur in Texas; but in Louisiana, Port Art'ur.

Blowgum, his wife, Cindy, and RB own businesses on Main Street in Marble Falls, and also run Historic Main Street Association (HMSA). They decided to bring something new to town – a Blues Festival. "It was kind of a strange coming together," says Blowgum. "Me and Clifford grew up going across the River, listening to Jerry LaCroix and the Boogie Kings. The legal age for drinking was 18 there, instead of 21; but if you could reach the bar, you could buy a drink. It didn't matter if you stopped at Buster's, LouAnn's, or The Big Oaks, you could buy a drink. I can remember us doing this since I was 15, and Cliff only 14. Here in Marble Falls, I met RB, who had his own connection with Cliff from way back, but neither of us knew we had this in common for a while. It was a big happy coincidence."

When Blowgum told RB that he was going to produce a Blues festival, he knew he could count on Cindy to help him, and do all the hard work to make it happen in only three months. He also knew he could count on Cliff to help him book a few bands. RB said that Clifford Antone's lecture series of the History of the Blues & Rock & Roll was already being planned for the Uptown Marble Theater. So the work began and the rest is history.

What nobody could have known was the short time Clifford Antone had remaining in this world. At the age of just 56, he died, very shortly after he helped produce the first Bluebonnet Blues & Fine Arts Festival (BBFAF) in the Spring of 2006. One of the many things Antone could not have known before he died was that this little festival would become a legacy of sorts. It would be the last festival he would be a part of.

"I just wish we had documented it better," says RB. "We had Clifford up on stage, talking to a full house here at the Uptown about what the blues meant in his life. If we had just one photograph of that, it would be enough to help us remember it forever. Of course, none of us knew what was going to happen next. We thought we'd be doing this again and again for years."

"We have also lost Bobby Doyle, who played at BBFAF's first Pianorama, and Uncle John Turner, who played drums for Jerry LaCroix in the both the first and second shows," Blowgum reminds. At the first festival, Blowgum heard Cliff tell Jerry, "I owe my life of blues to you because of those early years going across the river. In fact, Jerry, I look at you just like Ray Charles."

Bullets in blue sky
Never ones to back down from a challenge, Blowgum, Cindy, RB, and a handful of volunteers, went to work in the Fall of 2006 to produce the second annual Bluebonnet Blues & Fine Arts Festival in Spring 2007. The weather worked against them, with a huge flood basically washing the show out on its first night. Nevertheless, the show did go on with bands moving inside to venues in the downtown district, and when all was said and sung, the festival even ended up with a little cash in its coffers.

Blowgum went immediately to work booking acts for 2008. As a lifelong music lover, Blowgum doesn't draw much of a line when it comes to deciding what musical styles are appropriate for his show. He has traditionalists such as W.C. Clark booked alongside up-and-comers like Jon Justice, an ordinary-looking white boy out of Cincinnati, who grew up in Chicago and is taking the blues scene by storm. Homemade Jamz is a band made up of two brothers, ages 13, on bass, and 15, on guitar, and their 9-year-old sister on the drums. They're about the best thing B. B. King has ever seen play in all his 82 years, and they'll be playing on the Bluebonnet Blues Festival stage. Visit, go to the Music page, then navigate to the videos on their site to hear what B. B. has to say about them.

In fact, a glance at the lineup scheduled for the Bluebonnet Blues and Fine Arts Festival 2008 shows such depth that just about any act could be considered a headliner. There's Zac Harmon, who's traveling down from his new home in Dallas; Ruben Ramos, the esteemed "El Gato Negro," who'll be playing with Los Flames; Whitey Johnson; Texas Johnny Brown—the list goes on and on. You'll hear traditional blues, Tejano blues, as well as Cajun/Zydeco blues. As Blowgum says, "There's blues in every culture's music."

Who knows the blues
Blues lovers are known for their allegiance to the tradition and roots of the music they love.

"I had this idea," says Blowgum Vaughn, "that we could get this professor out to give a workshop, a seminar, on the history of the blues. I thought it would add an important educational aspect to the show, and certainly complement the showing of Clifford Antone's History of the Blues (a 30-minute promotional copy)."

The professor Blowgum found is the respected folklorist Dr. Barry Lee Pearson. For Christmas, Blowgum's wife, Cindy, had given him a copy of Pearson's book, Jook Right On: Blues Stories and Blues Storytellers.

"What it is, is a bunch of stories that Dr. Pearson gathered from a bunch of the old blues guys. I wanted to share those stories with other people. I thought we could put them in the newspaper to educate readers on the roots of the blues. They're just good. They speak of the real thing, of what the blues really is. Anybody who reads them will want to come out and hear the music."

The idea grew from there. "Then we called Dr. Pearson and asked whether he would consider coming out for the festival and giving his lecture up on stage at the Uptown. He'll be up there with a bunch of blues musicians, and what they'll do is have a conversation in words and music."

The point of such a show is to tell the story of the blues—since the story of the blues comes in endless variations, this one will focus on musicians from different walks of life who will take the stage with Dr. Pearson, who will listen to them play and then talk to them and the audience about what they're doing with their guitars, their harmonicas, and their voices. Unscripted and unplanned, this part of the Bluebonnet Blues festival will be just as exciting and entertaining as any pure music performance.

Painting the town
The Fine Arts part of the Festival incorporates the "Paint the Town" plein air painting event, featuring a competition for prizes of money and awards, with a silent auction of the event-produced paintings to follow.

Plein-air painting is a style of painting in which artists take their canvases and materials out of the studio and out into the world. They set up in front of a scene and paint it right there, in real time, without using photographs or any other point of reference than what is in front of them at the moment. Artists all have the same amount of time, a 24-hour period, to capture what they see in fluid paint and color. Like produce picked straight from the garden, the visions they manage to capture on canvas are full of the life and the beauty of downtown Marble Falls and the country that surrounds it.

A big incentive in previous years for artists to enter this event was the grand prize: a cast-bronze medal created by local sculptor Dan Pogue. At the end of the event, paintings are judged. Prizes are awarded, and the paintings are auctioned. The paintings created in previous years can be seen on display at various shops and locations throughout downtown Marble Falls.

This year's grand prize is a check for $1000 and a "gold" medal sculpted by local artist, Dan Pogue, enough of an incentive that "Paint the Town" should once again draw some of the best plein-air painters in the area. There will also be second and third place winners, and artwork produced at the show will be for sale at silent auction, along with other pieces produced by participating artists.

Blue food for soul and stomach
Given that the event has not yet taken place, it is almost impossible to describe all the fun that will be part of the 2008 Bluebonnet Blues and Fine Arts Festival. Enough music to satisfy the most particular blues hound. Enough dance and opportunity for good fun to draw music lovers of any color of the rainbow. A chance to listen to a good professor speak about the history and lore of a music form that is deeply American and particularly part of Texas. Plus good food, fine arts, kids crafts tent, crawfish races, and just about anything else anyone might want to find in a fun weekend in the Hill Country.

Only 5000 tickets each day are available this year for the Bluebonnet Blues and Fine Arts Festival, and only 100 Pianorama seats. Here's hoping that you manage to get your hands on some of them! Dr. Pearson's workshop and the showing of Clifford Antone's History of the Blues (30-minute promo copy) at Uptown Marble Theater will be free all day Saturday and Sunday.

Tickets available online at, or call 866.443.8849.

For more information, visit
- Texas Times

"Jon Justice to perform"

A local Blues artist will take the stage next month along side The Fabulous Thunderbirds in front of an expected crowd of 100,000 as part of the annual Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival.
Jon Justice, 23, of Fleming County, will appear with his band, at the Arkansas Blues and Heritage Festival, formerly known as the King Bisquit Festival, in Helana, Ark., Oct. 5-7.
"I'm very excited to perform in front of a crowd that large," Justice said. Joining Justice will be Flemingsburg native Nathan Lewis, Scotty O'Brien of Boston on keyboard, and Jeremy Kinesvaccer of Lebanon, Ind., on the saxaphone and bass.
Justice is no stranger to performing before large and small crowds alike.
" I give it everything I can for every performance, regardless of the crowd," he said.
Justice has been playing local venues to sold out crowds since he was 12, and released his debut entitled "Forget About Time" two years ago which quickly sold out at local music stores.
He's currently working on his second album, entitled " The Rebound".
" I hope to have it pressed and in stores early next year," Justice said. " I'm working with the band on the musical arrangements, but I usually write the lyrics myself."
Additional artists at the Festival include Tab Benoit, Sam Carr, Paul deLay, Pinetop Perkins, Eddie Shaw, Jimmy Thackery, Watermelon Slim, and Micheal Burkes.
Fans who want to learn more about Justice and his tour schedule should visit
Justice will be performing at Stevie Ray's in Louisville this thursday. Followed by Cheapside Bar and Grille Friday and Saturday. - The Gazette By Guy Townsend

"And Justice For All"

The Jon Justice Band earns top honors at the Cincinnati Blues Challenge and looks to the future
BY Brian Baker | Posted 08/01/2007

Jon Justice

After jamming with Tennesse's The Recipe for several years, local singer/guitarist Jon Justice came back to Greater Cincinnati and the Blues he loves.

For one so young, Jon Justice has a lot of notches on his 24-year-old belt. He's been a working musician since childhood. His debut album, 2004's Forget About Time, will soon be joined by his as-yet-untitled sophomore album, and he and his band -- the Jon Justice Band, naturally -- recently scored the top prize at this year's Cincy Blues Challenge for the right to represent the city at the International Blues Challenge early next year.

Throw in the fact that Justice's first band -- The Recipe, with noted Nashville keyboardist Steve Blah -- was formed before he was old enough to drink in the places they played, that he's a relentless road jockey and he's a single parent with sole custody of his 3-year-old son, and you've got a readymade Blues story.

Justice's tale began in Chicago, where he grew up in the church and toured around with his father and uncle at an early age. His exposure to Gospel as a youngster gave way to Bluegrass when the family moved to Kentucky while Justice was still a child, and he continued to experience life on the road.

"Before I started playing guitar I was a drummer and that's how I got my chops, trying to play along with Bluegrass because there's no drummer in Bluegrass ... that shit is hard," Justice says from his remote home in Flemingsburg, Ky. "It was kind of a novelty thing with the older guys: 'Let's have the 12-year-old play.' But I was making just as much money as they were."

By the time Justice hit his teen years, his focus had switched to guitar and little else. Faced with declining grades and no motivation to improve them, Justice dropped out of high school.

"My dad was so busy with his business that he never noticed that I didn't go to school," Justice says. "We had this big Suburban that we used to carry my gear around in and I'd go to the lake and just open up the back doors and sit there and play guitar and smoke cigarettes."

With no prospects around Justice's Kentucky home, his cousin based near Memphis offered him some painting/wallpapering work. With his growing guitar prowess and a 17-year-old's infinite bravado, Justice moved to Memphis.

"You know, you're 17, you acquire some skills but your craft is by no means honed like you think it is," Justice says. "I tried to play with the big boys and I wasn't really ready, but I learned a lot from it."

The Recipe, Justice's first band, came together when he met Blah, a noted session player, and approached him about working together. Blah was uninterested, likely due to Justice's age and apparent lack of experience. Blah's wife recognized Justice's passion and invited him to their house. As a result, Justice and Blah jammed and put The Recipe together.

Justice eventually began to hear the solo call and assembled the Jon Justice Band, a Blues trio set-up that occasionally goes simply by Justice's name, which changes by virtue of the shifting nature of his lineup.

"I don't mean for it to be an ego trip, but it's essentially Jon Justice," he says with a laugh. "I've had so many musicians play with me, that's why I always kept it 'Jon Justice.' Right now, I'm using the Jon Justice Band because I've had the same guys for a while and I've used these guys on the (new) record. It's hard to keep guys together, especially younger guys. My drummer right now is 20 years old, my bass player is 22 and I'm 24."

Although Justice's first album, Forget About Time, has earned him good notices, he's the first to admit that it was just a starting point for him, as a player, singer and songwriter. With his upcoming album, which he and the band are in the midst of recording, he feels his creative evolution will be much more in evidence.

"The first one was a little too flashy," says Justice. "I didn't have a lot of experience doing my own stuff in the studio so it was a little overproduced. This one I'm doing myself so it's more like Led Zeppelin meets Motown. It's got that Blues/Rock edge, but I'm trying to concentrate a lot more on my vocals and my lyrics."

Justice's appreciates his win in the Cincy Blues Challenge, but he keeps it in perspective.

"We got 99 out of 100, and the comments were ridiculously funny," Justice says. "Like, 'Wow, something new and fresh to the table.' What did they expect me to do? If you're not pushing the envelope a little bit, you're going to be playing in bars for the rest of your life."

Justice has recently secured national management, which will expand his range and fortunes considerably, but there are pitfalls in that regard as well. A recent branding session gave Justice a taste of the bigger time, and he, in turn, let them know what he thought about branding.

"This chick from L.A. was there and this big promoter from Chicago who discovered Slipknot was there," Justice says. "And I seriously had to pour myself a drink, light a cigarette and tell them to kind of fuck off. I'm like, 'I understand we have to be going in the same direction, but you're telling me that, on my next record, if I want to do one mic in one room with a dobro and a slide and play Country-ass, Mississippi Hill Country Blues, it's not going to fit with what I've already done? Then I don't want to do it.' I want to do whatever I want, whenever I want to.

As Jon Justice moves forward in his career, with more touring and recording in his imminent future, he knows that whatever direction his music takes, it's got to come from within him and not from a boardroom or a focus group.

"To me, it's the artist that makes the substance," Justice says. "Look at all of the different styles that Bob Dylan has pulled off. What do you call him? A Pop/Rock artist. But the last two Dylan shows I've seen, the whole band's dressed in Country gear and he's playing a pedal steel. What do I bring that's different? I guess ... differentness. I'm not going to be tied down."

- City Beat

"Justice Has Right To Sing The Blues"

Justice has right to blues
Guitarist brings his act to Newport for Winter Blues Fest
E-mail | Print | digg us! |! | Click-2-Listen

At 25, Jon Justice would seem to have enough life experiences to qualify him to "sing the blues."

He had a tough childhood growing up poor in Chicago. He's fought addiction battles and is a single dad.

Justice, now of Flemingsburg, Ky., is perhaps the area's hottest up-and coming blues rocker with a reputation for a sizzling live act and proving to be an outstanding singer-songwriter. He will represent the region at next week's prestigious International Blues Challenge in Memphis, which features 90 bands and 60 solo acts from around the world playing the Beale Street clubs.

• Listen to "Mean Old World."

Justice won the Cincy Blues Challenge last spring to earn the trip to Memphis. He performs today at the Winter Blues Fest at the Southgate House sponsored by the Cincy Blues Society.

How does one prepare to compete against the best in the blues biz?

"It's just another show," Justice says in his good ol' boy drawl. (Yes, he's also developed the self-deprecating swagger of any good guitar slinger). "The main reason to be down there is the networking to get good festival dates."

Justice, born in southern Wisconsin, moved to Chicago at a young age where his parents then separated. He remembers it was a tough time. "I've lived in campers and in the back of my dad's shop."

Justice was around music his whole life. His father fronted a gospel-bluegrass band that toured the church circuit. Justice started playing drums with the group when he was 13.

By the time he was a teenager, his family had settled in Flemingsburg, where he acknowledges he "got into some trouble."

"I really hated school and I wasn't going to college. But I always knew what I wanted to do, so I thought I always had a leg up on everybody. I wanted to play music," he says.

At 17, Justice packed his guitar and headed to the home of the blues - Memphis. "I thought I was going to be Eric Clapton or something. I realized that's not how it works. You can't just get up there and play guitar. In retrospect it was cool because it humbled me and I did learn a lot from it."

Justice landed a job traveling the country wallpapering hotel rooms. He says that was actually pretty good preparation for the life of a touring musician. "And I did a lot of woodshedding, practicing, sneaking into bars for jams."

In Memphis he formed the Recipe, touring nonstop for almost three years, then moved back to Kentucky to form the Jon Justice Band.

Three years ago Justice released a debut CD, "Forget About Time." An EP, "Rebound," followed last year. On the CDs, Justice flashes an uplifting head-bobbing, blues rock sound. It is catchy, R&B-inflected blues complete with horns and gospel-style backup singers.

He is also maturing as a writer as evidenced by his "Mean Old World," a moving call-to-action tune about the cycle of poverty that Justice says was inspired by his own childhood and what he sees today in Over-the-Rhine.

Justice says he's been clean and sober since last fall and feels that has helped his writing and playing. "You see your music a lot clearer when you aren't numbing yourself all the time."

Justice has sole custody of his 4-year-old son, Jonah. And, yes, he says his son "plays" guitar and even appeared last summer with dad on stage at a blues fest.

"He went to the van and got his little guitar and sat next to me onstage. But that wasn't good enough either. He started doing the duck walk across the stage."

Justice is finishing up work in Nashville on a new CD due out in March.

- Cincinnati Enquirer

"What's New"

Jon Justice was born in the Chicago area and toured as a teen with various bluegrass and gospel groups. The lure of those two musical genres led him to relocate to Memphis, where he developed his own unique musical vision mixing blues, gospel, and soul with a touch of the swamp. His second release, The Rebound (self-released), is an amazing ride through these genres which results in some of the best Southern rock heard in a while.

The opening cut, “Nobody’s Bizness,” is a delicious variation on the old blues classic “Ain’t Nobody’s Business,” complete with Stax-like horns and groovy backing chick vocals, all driven by Justice’s gravelly vocal, his slide guitar, and funky Hammond Organ provided by co-producer Phillip Wolfe. If this was a fair world, you’d hear songs like this on your radio on a regular basis. “Bad Bad Man” is a swampy blues track with more fine fretwork and “Mean Old World” is another upbeat number that’s bound to get you on your feet.

The title track features more tasty slide work from Justice, as does the rocker, “Leavin’ To Stay.” Coming at the disc’s midpoint, “You and Me” is a nice change of pace, in more of a pop vein and featuring Ben Walkenhauer on saxophone. The soulful “Lose It All” features a strong vocal by Justice, and “Get You Good” demonstrates Justice’s flair for catchy lyrics and is one of the disc’s standout tracks.

The Rebound is a strong effort by Jon Justice. His gritty, powerful vocals, splendid guitar work, and songwriting skills make this one a keeper for fans of blues/rock with a touch of soul.

--- Graham Clarke

- Blues Bytes

"Blues With Justice"

Okay, so Jon Justice's name is awfully easy to have fun with, and as you have probably noticed, BlueNotes takes his wordplay seriously.

Independent Records

John Justice's latest CD:

The ReboundBut the soulful, bluesy music of Jon Justice is also serious business, and he's quite good at it despite his more or less tender years. Born in Chicago in 1982, Justice took his gritty voice and penchant for sturdy guitar work to Memphis in 1999, where he's focused on his music, touring and recording.

In this, "The Rebound," (Independent) his second CD, Justice shows off vocals with the world-weary touch of the classic soul singers, with songs that he's created to match his style. He wrote, arranged and co-produced all the tracks here, not an easy feat to pull off. Especially with results this fine. He pushes hard on swinging tracks like "Nobody's Bizness," "You're Mine" and "Mean Old World," and settles into slow-burning grooves on tracks like "All in My Head" and "Lose it All." Check the soul on "Lose it All."

Justice doesn't just sing. He teases some tough blues notes out of his guitar -- check the way he works through "Lose it All." He blends the grit of guitar and vocals into just the right mix.
It's not what you'd call a straight-ahead blues album, but it reminds me a lot of '50s and '60s soul, which bends the blues into torchy, horn-kicked riffs created for the kind of slow dancing that every once in a while returns to BlueNotes in a Fifties Flashback.

If these dramatic and punchy tracks are a sample of his arranging and producing skills, we all have a lot to look forward to.

- Pittsburgh Post Gazette

"Review of The Rebound"

Born in the Chicago area in 1982, Jon Justice started out in the music business traveling with gospel and bluegrass groups. He had a serious blues jones to feed, tho, and, at seventeen, moved to Memphis to absorb that city's various cultural offerings. Soon, the Jon Justice Band was formed, and began to tour virtually non-stop, opening for the likes of Indigenous, Little Charlie, and Joe Bonamassa. Representing the Queen City of Cincinnati, OH, the fellows created quite a buzz at this year's IBC. On the heels of those successes, they have released "The Rebound," fourteen cuts of Jon's soulful vocals, mean blues guitar, and some of the coolest soul-blues this side of East McLemore.

The band members are all seasoned veterans, too. They include Phillip Wolfe on keys and harp, Wade Baker on bass and trumpet, and Rudy Miller on drums. Coupled with Jon's penchant for lyrics that belie his youth on subjects such as love, relationships, and problems plaguing today's society, this is a strong set, indeed.

Check out the funky backbeat that propels "Bad Bad Man," with its tale of a man who's lived a hard life, and has resigned himself to his fate of eternal damnation. The title cut explains a man who's just plain tired of a come-and-go lover, and has all the elements of classic blues---an acoustic intro giving way to Jon's blistering slide, with a harp solo at the bridge. Topical societal issues, including the Katrina tragedy, are spelled out in "Mean Old World."

We had two favorites, too. "You And Me" is built around a sweet sax riff that'll have you humming, while the ballad "Get You Good" is the story of a man who realizes a lifelong dream of sharing an intimate moment with that special someone. Curl up on the couch with YOUR special one and let this one lead you where it may.

Jon Justice is one of those bumper crop of young folks who are doin' the best they can to insure the future of the blues. Give a listen to "The Rebound" and prepare to be wowed! Until next time...Sheryl and Don Crow.

- Music City Blues

"Another review of The Rebound"

The Rebound:

Midway through his 20s, we have a white boy here that feels and has a feel for the blues. Not the down the middle kind, the kind you get from a suburbanite with Chicago roots that wants to make sure you’re having a good a time as him. They love his energy and passion in Cincinnati and with some road work and YouTubes, the rest of the world should feel the vibe as well. Hot, hard hitting stuff that’s filled with the raw energy that makes this seem fully formed on arrival. Hard to ignore and hard not to enjoy - Midwest Record

"Sound Impressions"

The Rebound -Independent
Jon Justice

This disc of all original tunes is brimming with great melodies, hooks galore, engaging guitar riffs and Jon's own brand of Blues rooted rhythm and rock. The superb band, backup vocals and great arrangements further enhance the listener's pleasure. Jon has followed his earlier release, "Forget About Time," with a stellar line up of new material that demonstrates that great musicians just keep getting better. Keep em' coming, Jon. - Barrelhouse Blues


2004 Forget About Time LP
2007 Mean Old World EP - August 07'
2008 The Rebound
2011 Forgiveness- Currently Unreleased




Opened for Guitar Legend Jeff Beck, at the Cincinnati Riverbend Ampitheatre.

Featured on compilation album, GONE BUT NOT FORGTOTTEN with luminaries MARTY STUART, DELBERT McCLINTON, STEVE EARLE, LEE ROY PARNELL AND MANY MORE. A non- profit project helping rebuild schools and homes for the displaced survivors of Hurricane Katrina.

Shared sold out bill with Grammy winner Delbert McClinton October 11, 2008 at The Madison Theatre

Sophomore release, THE REBOUND, climbed to #8 on the Blues and Roots Music Charts where it stayed for more than 12 weeks.

Nominated for 5 Cincinnati Entertainment Awards - "Best Blues", "Best Live Act" and "Best New Artist"

Track "Brighter Day" was released on a compilation produced by Bootsy Collins called "Fallen Soldiers". The proceeds will go to build a Fallen Soldiers Memorial. Other artists on the compilation were Charlie Daniels, Bootsy Collins, George Duke and many more.

Voted City Beat Magazine Best Singer / Slinger of 2007

In August of 2007 Jon shot a cameo in Bootsy Collins' (Parliament Funk, George Clinton, James Brown) video for the song "BENGAL ROCK".

Jon Justice won the Cincinnati Blues Challenge and represented the Queen City at the 2008 IBC in Memphis, TN.

Jon Justice was born in the Chicago, Illinois, area in 1982. His first formal music performance experience came as a teenager, when he toured nationally with bluegrass and Gospel groups. In 1999, he acted upon the visceral effect such music has had on him since his youth: acknowledging its inhabiting of his soul and seeking to be among people who shared deeply felt musical sensibilities, he moved to Memphis, Tennessee.

Using that musically rich city as both his inspiration and his base of operations, Justice joined with veteran pianist of Percy Sledge and Exile fame, Steven Bowen, to form The Recipe. They then toured together between 2000 and 2003, doing literally hundreds of shows and turning thousands of people onto the emerging sound of Jon Justice.

His debut CD, Forget About Time:
His extensive touring, combined with five years of life experience, enabled Justice to forge a truly distinctive sound. Philip Wolfe, producer of bands such as Alabama, Trick Pony, and Dickey Betts, came on board at that time to work with Justice, and joining them was Memphis Horn Wayne Jackson, contributor to the outstanding music of such industry forces as Otis Redding, Elvis, Aerosmith, and Aretha Franklin, and harmonica wiz Jason Ricci. Working in concert, they crafted the well-received debut Justice album, Forget About Time, which released in June 2004.

Forget About Time is surprisingly diverse and deeply delightful, combining two hallmarks that define the Jon Justice sound: The first is the depth and breadth of musicality that can evoke many influences at the same time it is deeply original—unusual in one so young. The second is his ability to engender musical experiences that range from rousing anthem-like compositions that are rhythmically and lyrically irresistible, to honest, intimate songs that recall the private meditations and intimate moments shared between individuals.

In support of the release of Forget About Time, Justice toured from state to state, doing what he loves to do best—perform for live audiences.

A truly consummate performer, Justice walks from the sidewalk to the stage without breaking stride, bringing with him an authentic joy in his music that never fails to energize his shows—and his audience. With each show, Justice’s easy presence and resonant musical style creates a bond with his listeners; the result is a live show experience that surpasses all expectations and that is amazing and unforgettable—particularly when it emanates from one so young.

In the course of his performing career, Justice has opened for Jeff Beck, Leon Russell, Derek Trucks, Indigenous, Ten Years After, Silvertide, Tinsley Ellis, Watermelon Slim, Popa Chubby, Guitar Shorty, Walter Trout; and has played and shared bills with music luminaries including Buddy Guy, the Memphis Horns, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Johnson, Jimmy Thackery, Pinetop Perkins, The Fabulous Thunderbirds....

Jon also had the privilege to perform at the 2006 Blues and Heritage Festival, formerly known as the King Biscuit Blues Festival, in Helena Arkansas.

In 2007 Jon was voted best Blues Artist in Cincinnati and will represent the Queen City in the International Blues Challenge in Memphis in 2008. Jon also performed at this years annual Cincinnati Blues Festival along with many other national festivals in 2008.

The evolution of the Jon Justice sound:
As Justice approaches the quarter-century mark in his life, his music continues to evolve as his life experiences expand. Already possessed of soulfulness that belies his youth, Justice is constantly exploring musical influences and expanding his repertoire of skills.

Thus the “Jon Justice Sound” is always pushing outward to fresh e