Jon's Music Background and performance history
MAY 2019 TO Covid Pandemic - Matxain Etxea, San Juan Bautista, CA. Jon returned as the house Singer/Guitarist, playing every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings. In October, Jon initiated "Old Time Music Night" on Thursday nights, featuring Country/Western, older Western, and old style Blues. April 2016 TO APRIL 2019 - While not "On The Road", playing 16 Sunday afternoon concerts at various San Francisco Bay Area venues, and regularly playing weekend evenings at The Pomodoro in San Jose, CA., or the "Over The Hill Gang" Saloon in Capitola, CA., and occasionally sitting in with the "Aromas Quarry Boys" at the Aromas Grill in Aromas, CA., Jon began recording several CD's including OLD TRAILS NEW SALOONS (no longer available), OLD TRAILS NEW SALOONS II (now available on E-bay), BLUES PLATE SPECIAL (soon to be released), and OLD WINE (soon to be released), and wrote several new songs before returning to Matxain Etxea as the house Singer/Guitarist in May, 2019. JUNE 2013 TO MARCH 2016 - Matxain Etxea, San Juan Bautista, CA. Jon was the house Guitarist and Singer, playing every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evening and Sunday afternoons.
Jon started playing Trumpet at 12, and Guitar at 16. In his early 20's, Jon sat in with the Shady Grove Singers at Ricardo's in San Jose, CA., and was a Monday Jazz Night regular when Jazz greats like Chet Baker and Lee Konitz, and Rock star drummer Gary "Chick" Hirsh (Chicken Hirsh of Country Joe and The Fish) would occasionally sit in with "The Doctor", Don McCaslin. During that same period Jon regularly jammed with Bill Munday, the guitarist with the 60's Folk/Gospel duo "Joe and Eddie" (featured twice on the Ed Sullivan Show), and had the great privilege of working with Trombonist Bernie Cohn, who introduced him to his first big band charts (Bernie was the leader of the house Band at the Circle Star Theater in Belmont, CA during the mid to late 1960s and was a member of Ernie Hecksher's Venetian Room Band at the San Francisco Fairmont Hotel in the late 1960s, early 1970s). During the 1960's, Jimbo's Bop City on Post Street in San Francisco was THE after hours Jazz Club in Northern California, and Jon spent many weekends at the Saturday Night to Sunday Morning all night jam sessions, learning from Jazz greats like his friend,the late Lee Morgan (who, at the time they met, was playing Trumpet with Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers at The Jazz Workshop) and the late Don Alberts, who was Bop City's house pianist during that time. In the following years, Jon continued to play "casuals" while working as an Inspector and Consultant in the construction industry, and owned and operated the historic Rancho Santa Teresa, a 2000 acre cattle ranch in Paso Robles, CA. and Heatherstone Farms, a horse training and teaching facility. In the mid 1990's to early 2000's, Jon and his students won three State Championships in both Western Pleasure and Hunter/Jumpers. In June of 2013, Luis Matxain, contacted Jon and retained him to provide the live music for Matxain Etxea, the internationally known Basque Restaurant in San Juan Bautista, CA., where he subsequently played 4 nights a week and occasional Sunday afternoons for several years during the last decade (see above).