jon michaels
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"one of the great singer-songwriters of recent memory"

Touted by Andrew Gold (“Thank You For Being A Friend,” & “Oh what a lonely Boy”) as one of the great singer-songwriters of recent memory, when I listened to Jon Michaels' recently released CD, "Stones", I’d have to agree. It’s not often I find a CD I want to listen to over and over again, but Jon’s compilation of 13 uniquely distinct songs with great melodies and soulful lyrics all written from the heart left me with an overall ‘feel good’ uplifting euphoria which got better with each repeated listen.

Jon Michaels has a gift for writing and telling stories with his personal insight from simple life experiences. From a hot date with a woman with an iron-willed chastity (“Check Please”), to crooning an everlasting promise of love (“I Will” – featured in a NBC Movie of the Week, “Texas Love Triangle”) , to an inspirational and true story (“The Smile”) of a prisoner of war melting the enemy guard’s heart of stone (recent finalist in this year’s Kerr Festival -a personal favorite of mine), Jon gives an emotionally charged performance with his smooth, baritone vocals and real-to-life songs expertly crafted and performed to perfection in a live setting.

The CD was recorded in front of an audience at Douglas Corner Cafe in Nashville, TN with some of the city’s best musicians (Ray Herndon – electric & acoustic guitar & co-producer, Matt McKenzie, bass, Billy Thomas, drums, Dennis Wage, keyboards, Kim Parent, harmony vocals). Jon’s friend and co-writer Jimbeau Hinson (“Sitting Fancy-Free” & “Party Crowd” and many others) - SONGWRITER SPOTLIGHT


"by far one of the best that I've heard"

As far as live albums go, this album is by far one of the best that I've heard. There are times throughout this album that I would stop and wonder if this wasn't really a studio album. That just goes to show how good of a performer that Jon and his band are. Though that may be one of the things that hit me right off, it's definitely not the only thing about this album that makes it stand out. Jon is one of those people that was born to be a musician. His music has all of the catchy appeal of crossover country and the energy that is now expected from that genre. Jon is also quite a lyricist. His music pulls from memory and experiences that each and every one of us have lived. It's my belief that when an artist can portray real life situations and emotions, they have a better chance of winning everyone else over. That is exactly what this album does. It's one thing to be able to write songs that are potential hits, but when a song gives you that artistic substance, then it's as good as gold. Songs like 'The Smile' and 'Miss Fannie' convey true feelings and experiences, while drawing the listener in and allowing them to hang on every word. You can't have a great album without having music that simply spews with energy. 'Check Please' and 'W-O-M-A-N' give the album those cooking country songs that makes the album that much more exciting. This album is definitely full of potential chart burners. Don't take my word for it though, check it out for yourself. I'm sure that everyone will be very pleased.


- Michael Allison from The Global Muse


"will surely eat this up."

Those enraptured by Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Jim Croce and the like will surely eat this up.



- Demo Universe Reviews


"the most poignant and beautiful music I've heard in a long time"

Jon Michaels presents here on his album Stones some of the most poignant and beautiful music I've heard in a long time. Coming at country in the tradition of a Jim Reeves or an Eddy Arnold, Jon Michaels caresses music tenderly, but with affection and true delight as both singer and songwriter, amply demonstrating his skill with a good ear, a little humor, and a lot of pure joy in the music.

The album Stones was recorded live at Douglas Corner Caf‚ on January 27, 2001, and a marvelous CD it is. Michaels is not a hardcore country singer. His style is very countrypolitan; his style is strong, his vocals excellent. Smooth as his songs are, he's not afraid to swing it, as well; he pulls in his audience immediately with the infectious "Check Please" (written with Paul Jefferson, who also assists with "Miss Fannie" and "Hello, My Old Friend"), but you find you have to stay as you are drawn into the sharp lyrics. Michaels proves to be a superior songwriter, as shown in "The Gift of Forgiveness" (written with Jimbeau Hinson) with an opening verse of "I wore my anger like an armor 'cause I thought it made me stronger, but the angrier the weaker I became, when I finally let go of it, once I chose to rise above it, I found my anger was the source of all my pain." His humor shows in the delightful swing tune, "'I' Would Be Next To 'U'" (written with Wood Newton) which is just pure fun. His tenderness is revealed in the song for his friend, the lovely "Miss Fannie," as a tribute to a Mrs. Fannie Williams, whom he met while assisting Meals on Wheels. He continues to shows these poignant qualities in such powerful tunes as "Hello My Old Friend."

Recording an album live has pros and cons; occasionally you can run into muddy sound or an "off" night for the band; however, the pros often outweigh those cons. When you get an "on" night, there is very little that can be better than a live recording. In a live recording you can capture the way a singer really sings not to mention the tightness of a band all playing together, catching how each other is playing or singing or feeling. There is a sharp harmony in a recording when all the instruments and singers are together that is frequently missing in studio sessions where you can't get that give-and-take as all the tracks are recorded separately, sometimes days apart.

This album is rich and real, deeply emotional and powerfully delivered. Jon's vocals are strong and the playing is superior. This is an album that's simply delightful to listen to, with wonderful liner notes to read, and all around entertaining.

Song List:

1. Introduction
2. Check Please
3. The Gift of Forgiveness
4. The Smile
5. "I" Would Be Next To "U"
6. Miss Fannie
7. Hello My Old Friend
8. Now You Know
9. Lovers and Liars
10. I Will
11. The Ones That Get AWay
12. Stones
13. W-O-M-A-N - Country Music Weekly...by Kathy Coleman


Discography

A number of Jon's songs have been recorded by well-known country artists like Clint Black, Tracy Lawrence and Ty Herndon. Listen for Jon's song, 'Stones' on Tracy Lawrence's new CD, 'Strong", which critics have described as the 'meat and potatoes' of the CD, recently gone 'gold.' Jon's latest achievements (and the list is long) include writing and performing the theme song for 'Christina Cooks,' the Emmy Award-winning national public television cooking series, as well as performing an original song in each of the 26 episodes of Christina's seventh season on the air.

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

In a time when most people just talk about their feelings, Jon Michaels is a breath of fresh air, a rare singer/songwriter who willingly opens his heart and bares his soul. In his strong, smooth baritone, Jon croons with masterful vocal inflections of truth and beauty, tales of forgiveness, love lost and love found, taking his listeners on an emotional journey in the way that is uniquely Jon Michaels. Also, Jon toured with the New Christie Minstrels (who spawned such musicians as John Denver, Kim Carnes and Kenny Rogers),

Jon writes songs and music that "Chicken Soup for the Soul" co-author Jack Canfield proclaims as "chicken soup for my soul...that spreads light, joy, and fun." Nationally renowned musician Andrew Gold describes Jon Michaels as "one of the great singer-songwriters in recent memory. "Jon's debut album entitled "Stones" has elicited critical acclaim is described as "one of the most poignant and beautiful CDs heard in a long time. Those enraptured by Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Jim Croce and the like, will surely eat this up." 'Stones' showcases Jon as the 'triple threat' that he is...superb voice, expert guitar playing and exquisite lyrics and melodies. Jon's second CD, 'I Am Who I Am' is scheduled for release in June, 2004.

A number of Jon's songs have been recorded by well-known country artists like Tracy Lawrence and Ty Herndon. Listen for Jon's song, 'Stones' on Tracy Lawrence's new CD, 'Strong", which critics have described as the 'meat and potatoes' of the CD, recently gone 'gold.' Jon's latest achievements (and the list is long) include writing and performing the theme song for 'Christina Cooks,' the Emmy Award-winning national public television cooking series, as well as performing an original song in each of the 26 episodes of Christina's seventh season on the air.

The shows will begin airing, nationwide, in September 2004.Jon Michaels possesses all the qualities that make an artist great. His charm and talent combine to create the consummate performer. Years of stage experience, lyrical melodies, exquisite use of lyrics make Jon Michaels a singer/songwriter whose style will appeal to masses of listening audiences.

What Others are Saying...
"Jon - I love your music! It's Chicken Soup for my soul. Keep up the good work spreading love, light, joy and fun. Jack Canfield (Co Author Chicken Soup For The Soul)

"...a fresh approach to both lyrics and melody...a writer we will be hearing a lot from in the future." Steve Bogard (#1's for George Strait, Patty Loveless, Tanya Tucker)

"Jon has a warm, romantic vocal style that conveys his heartfelt songs. A wide range of topics that read from the pages of everyday life, his music shows depth of thought, and a higher understanding of the human condition."

Jimbeau Hinson (Setting Fancy Free, Party Crowd and many others)

"Jon Michaels writes the right songs with the right people. If you don't pay attention you will miss the boat on the future hit songwriter."
Pat Rolfe (ASCAP, Dir. Of Artist Relations)

"In a land full of same ol same ol it's so good to know Jon stays the course for being a little bit different. I love his songs. And I love the way he approaches his work: with passion. But don't ever ask him for directions in Phoenix. "
Jeffrey Steel (#1songwriter and former lead singer of Boy Howdy)

"Jon Michaels is one of the great singer-songwriters of recent memory."
Andrew Gold (Thank You For Being A Friend, Oh What A Lonely Boy)
"Jon Michaels has one of the best voices I've ever heard and as a songwriter, he comes from the heart. That's what makes listening to him such a pleasure."
Michelle Wright (Canada CMA 2000 Female Vocalist Of The Year)