Combining the best elements of country, folk,
and classic rock & roll,
meet singing and songwriting team
JEWELS AND JOHNNY NATION.
"Jewels & Johnny Nation capture a spirit that is like June Carter Cash fronting a late 60s country/folk/psych band. Elements of Bakersfield mix with the Sunset Strip creating a warm, harmony-driven, infectious sound"
Their songs have more hooks than a bait shop, and are full of honest good humor telling mostly true stories of real lives full of real feelings.
After a songwriting workshop with alt-country guru Jimmie Dale Gilmore, their writing process was solidified and the songs continue to get better and better.
"We balance each other perfectly as songwriting partners" says Jewels "I'm primarily a lyricist, I start with the emotional honesty of the story of the song while Johnny has a real gift for finding the hooks and guitar parts - we meet in the middle and that's where the magic happens" "Some of the first songs we wrote together like 'LAUREL CANYON', 'TRAVELIN" MOON', and '$91' are still favorites in our live show. That's the test of a good song, it gets better over time" says Johnny.
Jewels and Johnny have performed extensively for enthusiastic audiences at nearly every venue in Los Angeles. Some favorites: The Basement Tavern, The Mint, Canter's Kibitz Room, The House of Blues, Molly Malone's, The Viper Room, and Cinema Bar, They play regularly at the Santa Monica farmers market for crowds of up to 2,000 people.
In their own close knit community of Topanga Canyon, Jewels and Johnny have become local favorites, playing the legendary Topanga Days Country Fair for the past 5 years and The Topanga Earth Day Festival for 3 years, sharing the stage with Ziggy Marley, Canned Heat, Billy Idol and Maria McKee amongst others. Topanga's rich musical history and diverse talent pool provide constant inspiration and support for their music.
Outside of LA, Jewels and Johnny play regularly in and around Joshua Tree, California where they make their second home.
Besides touring Northern and Southern California extensively,
J & J have also toured the east coast and have begun touring Utah in the winter, playing all over Park City during the Sundance Film Festival.
Wherever they play, audiences respond immediately and positively to the unique sound and stage presence of the duo. High energy vocals meet tasty California-style riffs - a curly haired dynamo gets the crowd moving by dancing up a storm while a cool and handsome rock & roller takes his licks on a collection of vintage, high quality guitars.
Although Johnny’s background was in rock & roll and Jewels’ was in theatre, soon after meeting and starting to jam, Jewels and Johnny discovered a mutual curiosity about the history of country music and a real appreciation and deep love of the form.
Together they dug deep into traditional, mainstream, outlaw, and cosmic American music - approaching and interpreting it all with new eyes and a fresh perspective.
2011 saw the release of a 5 song EP "Big City Breakdown" - a return to Johnny's rock & roll roots featuring some grittier, less twangy material like the bluesy rocker "Build Me A Treehouse" and the jangly, Byrds-y "Look Like Now". "Big City Breakdown" was produced with Jim Watts (Gram Rabbit, Emmylou Harris, String Cheese Incident)
Jewels and Johnny received their first big song placement in 2006 - the upbeat 2-stepper "DON'T YOU KNOW" can be heard in the 20th Century Fox feature film "FLICKA" starring Tim McGraw. They've had several other songs placed in independent films and commercials and are actively pursuing other licensing opportunities through Pump Audio, the largest, most prestigious online music library around. Their acceptance by Pump represents a major vote of confidence in their material by the music industry.
"Don't You Know" is included on the 2006 release "FROM THE OCEAN TO THE DESERT" produced by Eric Corne at the late, great Mad Dog Studio.
In addition, Jewels and Johnny have released 2 earlier EPs both of which sold out their initial runs completely:
the 5 track debut "CITY FRITTER" and the 7 track all acoustic "JUST US". Though hard copies have now become collectors items, the songs are still available for download on their website and iTunes.