Jon T. Howard

Jon T. Howard

BandAmericanaSinger/Songwriter

Take a helping of Chicago Blues and stir in some Texas seasoning. Add a dash of R&B inclinations, throw in the grit of his alt-rock/punk past and mix well. You will find yourself with a heaping serving of the distinctive sound of Jon T. Howard.

Biography

“My dad went to prison when I was three, and my mom bought my first guitar with green stamps”.

Born in St. Charles, Missouri, Jon T Howard grew up the hard way. Few songwriters have lived to tell the tales that Howard serenely lays to paper and song. Romantic and masculine, bluesy-bitter and folksy-forgiving, wise and foolish; his understated and unvarnished lyrics cut to the heart of Howard’s complex soul. With the release of his newest CD, ‘Time For Something New’ on Mettafour Records, Howard, at a musical watershed in his life, puts it simply, ‘I’m making peace with the past.’ In his uncompromisingly honest music and gravelly voice, discerning listeners will detect a psyche at war with a lifetime of train wrecks witnessed. Howard: ‘The album is a bookend of what I’ve lived through and been a witness to.’ Jon’s love of his mother despite her turbulent marriage and her struggle with his stepfather’s addiction is the backbone for ‘Throw Another Penny;’ one of Jon’s strongest songs.

When Howard was a teenager his family moved to Chicago, and it was there that Jon began singing in a local bar band and composing songs. ‘I was the youngest member, and we were playing in all of these bars. My mom had to walk me in.’ Chicago stirred the blues in Howard’s soul. ‘I really liked Junior Wells, Muddy Waters and James Cotton, they have had big influence on my harmonica playing.’

While still in high school, Jon’s family once again relocated, this time to Dallas. A difficult move at the time but a blessing in disguise, the diverse musical influences of Texas would become a defining ingredient of Howard’s songwriting. While in Dallas, Jon started a new working band that focused on funk and R&B. “My personal taste ran to R&B, I wanted to do Marvin Gaye type songs – few had forged that path as a blue-eyed soul singer. However, ‘The powers that be’ had a different idea for me.’ Indeed. The 6’1” Jon’s good looks offered other options. ‘I modeled to pay my rent.’ As a print model, he traveled to the Caribbean Islands, Barbados, London, Milan, Spain and France. It allowed me to see the world.’ Jon wound up in London recording a “soul” record with noted producers Danny Puku and Bob Carter.

Back in the U.S.A. Jon moved to LA where he honed his songwriting craft with hit songwriters Gene Black and Monty Byrom. Howard then joined the controversial L.A. Funk/Rap/Thrash group Ku De Tah. The L.A. Music Awards acknowledged him for his hard-hitting lyrics on “Fish Outta Water” and “15 to 1.” Howard recalls; ‘It was an angry, politically-charged band and it eventually took it’s toll on us”.

Leaving the band to pursue something closer to his heart, he started writing acoustic songs with Infectious Groove’s Adam Siegel; then turned his attention to the making of his debut solo album, 1996’s ‘Americana.’

In 1997, Jon’s son Christopher was born. This caused him to refocus his goals and priorities. Jon spent time at home writing songs for the films; ‘Defying Gravity’ and ‘Civility.’ In 2000, he released a CD with 18 children’s songs called Christopher’s Daddy. Two more self produced CD’s followed; ‘Dreaming of America ‘and ‘Dance of Life.’ Jon T. Howard has walked life’s battlefield, without losing a limb. He knows where the land mines are buried, and he’s come out intact. Howard tempts you to step out in risk, just to see how it feels. Jon’s lyrics exalt the option to participate in life.
His musical heroes include Bob Marley, John Lennon and U2’s Bono ‘For seeing the world in a greater light,’ Jon: ‘I also feel the need to do more. You can’t save the world as a whole but you save one human at a time, and hope you can be a positive influence. I like to believe in and try to find the good in all’.

But first you have to save yourself. As an album, ‘Time For Something New’ is an ironic culmination of Jon’s emotional journey and acknowledgement of his own demons.
Jon’s addiction is not to alcohol, drugs, or even tobacco. Clean as a whistle, the athletic, Harley riding Howard’s personal struggle has been with love. Howard groans; ‘Oh, I’ve been there. Still am. ‘La Da Dee, La Da Doe’ says it all...love will break your stride if you let it.’ Married three times, Howard is sublimely qualified to comment on messy matters of the heart as heard in his songs ‘Time For Something New.’ and “Sometimes It’s Love”
That said, Howard is an eternal optimist who believes in the virtues of love and lives life to the fullest.

Jon T swirls in gritty reality. But, do not mistake the laid back tone of his music for a lack of poignancy. He paints vivid pictures of heartache, loss and redemption in “Potterville” and “In The Eyes of Love”. His ability to let go and heal from all the turbulance and pain of his family life is heard in ‘A Walk in the Park.’ ‘Throw Another Penny’ brilliantly illustrates how he turns suffering into song.

This art form demands raw honesty. No great singer songwriter can keep a secret; they owe

Lyrics

A Walk In The Park

Written By: Jon T. Howard

Underneath the bright blue sky taking the day a step at a time going nowhere
On the bridge I stop and wonder why as the world below me races by going somewhere
With the sunshine on my face I've got the healing strength of faith walking with me
Down by the rivers edge reliving every word we said
my heart it bleeds

They say you can't heal without letting go
When all else fails with my dog in tow
I Take A Walk In The Park
I Take A Walk In The Park

Sitting under a walnut tree
I smile at a lady who smiles at me and it feels good
And for a moment I forget
how crazy this world really is
and man it feels so good
They say you can't heal without letting go
When all else fails with my dog in tow
I Take A Walk In The Park
Almost relegiously
And see that homeless man named Steve
Who looks at me with his wayward eyes
And the same thing always blows my mind it could be Jesus so I
Give him all I can and make my way home

Somewhere in this solitude
I find some hope for me and you
I know we'll make it through somehow we always do
And I'm thinking of my friends past and present
Trying to move beyond regrets
Love has a way to make amends
Will I have enough to even pay my rent
They say you can't heal without letting go
When all else fails with my dog in tow
I Take A Walk In The Park
I Take A Walk In The Park
I Take A Walk In The Park

I Take A Walk In The Park
And I see my friend named Steve
We just sit and shoot the breeze
We talk about nothing......

The Fruits Of Life

Written By: Jon T. Howard

Just as the river ebbs and flows
So the way of life it goes
Winding through the highs and lows
The journey of turning stones

And as our dreams become our lives
We race against the hands of time
To fill our cups drink from the vine
All the sweet fruits of life

Just as the oceans deep and wide
The shores of love are not defined
Through the waves and changing tides
Emotions take us for the ride

And as our dreams become our lives
We chase our youth and the divine
Sometimes bitter steep with brine
All the sweet fruits of life
All the sweet fruits of life
LaLa la la la la la
La la la la la

Lada Dee Lada Doe

Written By: Jon T. Howard

When I was a boy my daddy took me aside
Said son all you’ve got in life is your word and pride
When it comes to affairs of the heart always think twice
Women will always be mans greatest vice

Gamblers always lose it’s just a matter of time
When you bet against the house you’ll always pay the price

Oh lada dee lada doe
You’re damned if you do and a fool to say you won’t
They say stick with the devil that you know
Oh lada dee lada doe
Oh, oh life’s no bed of roses

Many have fallen trying to walk the line
Burned by the flames of lust and foolish pride
Yeah the book of love is filled with stories and rhymes
Written by those who know love’s paradigm

Ramblers live the blues it’s just their way of life
If you let it get the best of you love can break your stride

Oh lada dee lada doe
You’re damned if you do and a fool to say you won’t
They say stick with the devil that you know
Oh lada dee lada doe
Oh, oh life’s no bed of roses

Discography

Time For Something New - LP (release date 6/12/07)
Americana - LP
Dreaming Of America - Lp
Dance Of Life - LP
Christopher's Daddy - LP (Children's)

Set List

Lada Dee Lada Doe
Walk In The Park
Pottervile
Throw Another Penny
Time For Something New
Saint Charles
In The Eyes Of Love
Mama's Boy
Wishful Thinking
Coloured Balloons
Dance Of Life
Corpus Christi
Sometimes It's Love
Be My Savior
Still Broken
Babies & Coffee
Dreaming Of America
Wonderful World
Crazy Love
Redemption Song
What's So Funny About Peace, Love & Understanding
Give Me One Reason
Got My Mojo Workin'
Can't Let Go
Steal My Kisses
Also a complete cover list of blues & classic rock available upon request