JJ Jones

I seek to employ my artistic sensibilities in an effort to communicate LOVE in whatever form I find appropriate at any given moment. This may come from belting out my own interpretation of Barry Mannilow's Mandy to subversively praising the Son of God in the original composition Mr. Fixit. All my work seeks to convey deep truth, be it on an intellectual, emotional, or spiritual level.

 

Professional Biography

Before moving to Germany in 1996, I studied broadcasting and film in the United States, earning a degree from the University of Michigan in 1994. I co-wrote and associate-produced the Emmy award-winning documentary Come Unto Me: The Faces of Tyree Guyton (Nicole Cattell, 1999), after which I headed overseas with my newly wedded wife, the German artist and costume designer Sabine Schlunk.

SabineÕs costume collaborations proved to be quite instrumental in my spirited performances with the band Fuzzy Love, a "trash art ensemble" that formed as part of Canadian artist Laura Kikauka's Funny Farm series of works. The band, which reinterpreted pop hits of the past 50 years with a console organ and theremin, enjoyed great local success, being named one of Berlin's 100 most important bands and performing at venues throughout Germany and around the world, including Hong Kong, Paris, Venice, and Toronto.

In Berlin, I also enjoyed several theatrical projects. I co-wrote and directed a play based on Erich Kästner poetry called eier, zum Beispiel (eggs, for instance), and starred in the musical Die Drei von der Tankstelle (Three Petrol Pumpers) at the Brandenburg State Theater. I also appeared in the choreographic installation by Ami Garmon, Stepping Over Stepping Stones 1-2-3 at the Hebbel Theater, and Lindy Annis' American Tragedy, also at the Hebbel. My musical involvement continued to grow with additional band projects: atelier Theremin, an electronic experimental band influenced by 1970s German Krautrock; Der Plan, a revival of the German New Wave band from DŸsseldorf; and Dick Zeppelin, once again taking a new look at popular hits, but this time by reinterpreting Led Zeppelin music in a Rockabilly style.

Before I moved to Nashville, my musical endeavors began to focus on participation in a Serbian Orthodox church choir in Berlin and solo works, including See Through Tattoo, an exploration of the many interpretations of a single song, which premiered at the EXIT Festival in France in 2005. I also produced and performed a well-received Christmas album, 12 Minuten von Christmas, using the same premise as Tattoo of singing over historic recordings.

After moving to Nashville, 12 Minuten von Christmas began to be performed inside a giant bubble -- THE HUMAN SNOW GLOBE!

It has become clearer to me that as a musician it is my calling to use this medium as a way of being a light to the heart -- to sing and celebrate Love in many different ways, including the silly, the surreal, and the spiritual.

My current projects focus on this spiritual side, with songs written as solos for the Christian Science church and metaphysical alternative rock songs written with the Estonian composer Rainer Jancis.

I am very grateful to have been created and to be able to share my joy with anyone who will listen.