By Chelsey Saatkamp
Pursuing a career as a solo artist can sometimes be a lonely road, but it helps to have good crowds in Utah that lend support along the way.
Jonathan Jones, former lead singer of Waking Ashland and current lead vocalist of We Shot The Moon, is playing at the Velour Live Music Gallery in downtown Provo at 7:30 tonight. He will be singing songs from his current album, “Community Group,” as well as some of his band songs and covers.
The singer/songwriter from San Diego said he is excited to be playing in Provo again. After successful tours with his bands, Jones has decided to take a different path in his musical career by producing a solo album.
“We’re happy to have Jonathan back on our stage,” said Kaneisha Johnson, PR director for Velour. “A lot of people are looking forward to this concert; he’s a big name around here.”
“Community Group” was Jones’ first album that wasn’t completed through a record label. Using a website called Kickstarter, people pledged amounts to help fund the album, raising about $13,000.
“This album was really possible because of the fans,” Jones said. “It allowed me to take my music in a different direction.”
An autobiographical album with diverse instrumentation, “Community Group” includes tracks about meeting his fiancee and band members, as well as a song about a car accident We Shot the Moon had in 2010. Highlight tracks include “My Faith” and “Duracell,” a self-described “quirky tune” featuring a tuba.
Jones said Provo is one of his favorite places to perform. Having performed here more than 20 times in his career, Jones said one of his favorite things about the Provo music scene is the enthusiasm of the fans.
“The people here are really accepting and open to good music,” Jones said. “It’s just a great crowd who enjoys experiencing the moment.”
Jones, who grew up Methodist, said Christianity has affected his lyrics in ways that reflect a positive outlook on life as well as by incorporating some more spiritual themes. He also said part of his goal as an artist is to keep finding new ways to reinvent himself, citing a dance album currently in the works.
“My goal is to play to as many people as I can and distribute my music to different crowds,” Jones said. “I just want to keep finding new ways that music can be inspiring to me.”
David Charles, a solo artist and an auxiliary guitarist for Neon Trees, will open for Jones. Charles said the best part about playing in Provo is the memories and friendships he’s made throughout the years.
“I owe everything in my career as a musician to the Provo music scene,” Charles said. “It’s uplifting to see so many outstanding bands and artists rising up out of Provo. I look forward to diving head first back into the Provo scene and catching up on the brilliant music I’ve missed the last couple of years.”
Tickets for the event are $8 pre-sale and $10 at the door.