Jon Lindsay (musician)

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Jon Lindsay
Jon Lindsay on soundstage, Los Angeles 2013.jpg
Jon Lindsay
Background information
Birth name Jonathan Lindsay Phillips
Origin Portland, Oregon, United States
Genres Pop, rock, alternative, folk, baroque pop, powerpop, indie, experimental
Occupations Recording Artist, Singer, Songwriter, Producer, Activist
Instruments Vocals, Piano, Organ, Synthesizer, Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Percussion, Drums, Trumpet, Lap Steel
Years active 2007—present
Labels Bear Hearts Fox Records, Chocolate Lab, No More Fake Labels, North Star Media (Publisher), Heron Bay, Redeye Distribution
Associated acts Benji Hughes, Django Haskins, The Young Sons, The Catch Fire, Quells, Twelve Thousand Armies, Raised By Wolves, NC Music Love Army, Caitlin Cary, Nicole Atkins, Amigo, The Motel Beds, American Aquarium, Machine Theatre

Jon Lindsay is an American recording artist born in Portland, Oregon, now residing in North Carolina.

He is best known as the singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer of his own solo albums, though he periodically maintains roles with other bands and works in theatre, film and television as a composer and musical director. Lindsay is also known for his work as the co-founder, music director and producer of the North Carolina Music Love Army - a collective of prominent NC-based artists he co-founded in 2013 with Caitlin Cary.

Music career[edit]

Lindsay founded the band The Young Sons in June, 2007 and produced its debut LP Hearts Inc.[1][2] In 2008, Lindsay joined the band Benji Hughes (New West Records) on keyboards and vocals.[3][4][5] In 2009, he independently released his debut as a solo artist, the EP Magic Winter & the Dirty South[6] which showcased literate, folk-tinged pop songs, earning Lindsay positive notices in the indie press.[7] Also in 2009, Lindsay co-founded Charlotte's Machine Theatre, serving as Music Director and Company Composer. He sound-designed an adaptation of Ionesco's The Bald Soprano[8] and composed an original score for the company-created absurdist musical ThomThom; If That Bird Won’t Sing.[9][10][11][12]

Jon Lindsay, West Los Angeles, 2012

Lindsay made his official debut on Chicago-based label Chocolate Lab Records, who released his 15-song solo LP, Escape From Plaza-Midwood on August 17, 2010.[13][14][15] Concurrent with the album release was the 7-inch EP Coping Strategies, which features four songs from Escape From Plaza-Midwood.[16] Three free-download singles debuted with the album launch: "Frequent Flyer" at Magnet Magazine, "My Blue Angels"[17] at Fuse.TV, and "Futuretown" at AOL Spinner.[18][19][20] The album received high critical marks, gaining Lindsay some prominence in the US indie scene, bolstered by both solo and full-band tours, television appearances, Daytrotter and Ardent Studios sessions.[21][22][23][24][25][26][27][28][29][30][31] The Independent Weekly wrote that the album is "a sprawling opus of pop rock splendor", and Charlotte Magazine, regarding Lindsay's album and title, wrote "What Sufjan Stevens did for Chicago, Lindsay might just pull off for Charlotte."[32] In December 2010, Performer Magazine called Escape From Plaza-Midwood "One of the best records to come out of the Southeast over the course of the decade",[33] Shuffle Magazine's album review wrote that the album "comes as close as any regional record in recent memory to rendering what it means to be alive"[34] and NPR praised the song "During The Beauty Shortage" as showing the mastery of composer Aaron Copland.[35]

Following Escape, Lindsay toured the USA heavily for most of 2011, both solo and with his backing band. He also signed a music publishing deal with North Star Media of Los Angeles and Detroit,[36] performed at several festivals, and began preparations for his next releases: the EP Could It Be Christmas?, which has a loose holiday theme (Nov. 29, 2011); Rumormill, the debut LP of Lindsay's side project The Catch Fire (No More Fake Labels, Dec. 6, 2011); and Lindsay's second solo LP Summer Wilderness Program (Bear Hearts Fox Records, June 26, 2012). Summer Wilderness Program featured three singles each accompanied by music videos from directors of note: Colin Rich ("After Dark"), Michael Arthur ("Margot") and Mortimer Jones ("Oceans More"). All of Lindsay's 2011 and 2012 releases were met with critical praise for continued originality and imagination in American pop music.[37][38][39][40][41][42][43][44][45][46][47]

Jon Lindsay Live at the Echo, Los Angeles

In early 2013, Lindsay began cutting demos for his next full-length release. He performed a two-night stand in April 2013 at Rockwood Music Hall, debuting much of the new material. He then reprised that performance at Joe's Pub on May 25, with special guests.[48] Lindsay opened 2014 with festival appearances at Chicago's Deep Freeze Music Fest, then returned home for a month-long residency in Charlotte. At SXSW 2014 he performed solo, sang with The Motel Beds at the Misra Showcase and played keys for American Aquarium at multiple showcases. In Fall, 2014, he'll perform at Hopscotch Music Festival, CMJ, and announce the release details of his forthcoming LP, Cities and Schools, which he has spent most of the year completing in NC and Michigan.

The NC Music Love Army[edit]

In July 2013, Lindsay and close friend Caitlin Cary of Whiskeytown co-founded the North Carolina Music Love Army - a collective consisting of 50+ musical luminaries from or based in NC, conceived to oppose sweeping legislative actions by a GOP supermajority that emerged after Pat McCrory was elected Governor. The initial scope of the project included a 10-track album, released November 26, 2013 via Redeye Distribution, and several concert events in the Carolinas. Lindsay contributed original songs to the project and record, serves as the group's Music Director, and produced the LP, entitled, We Are Not For Sale: Songs of Protest. Members of the NCMLA who perform on the album include Lindsay, Cary, The Love Language, Hiss Golden Messenger, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Django Haskins, The Old Ceremony, Snuzz, Audley Freed, American Aquarium, The Connells, Chris Stamey, Chatham County Line and many more artists. Members of the NCMLA, including Lindsay, Cary, Haskins, Laurleyn Dossett and others have performed at Moral Monday rallies at the North Carolina General Assembly and in Charlotte. The events, which at times draw over 5000 participants, are part of the greater "Forward Together Movement" engineered by the NC chapter or the NAACP, under the leadership of Reverend William Barber II.[49][50][51][52]

TV & Film work[edit]

In January 2014, "My Body Politic" was featured on MSNBC's the Melissa Harris-Perry show. Lindsay's song "New English Magazines" appears in season 4, episode 2 of the SyFy network show Haven, which aired in Fall, 2013. In 2012, Lindsay's song "Frequent Flyer" made regular appearances on MTV Cribs. Also in 2012 his song "Tiny Violins" was featured on Nylon TV in a profile of Glee star, Lea Michele.[53] In 2009, Lindsay’s partnership with former The Young Sons bassist and fellow member in The Catch Fire, Mike Mitschele (Jolene, Alternative Champs) resulted in the co-creation of compositions for broadcast media, with recent work including original jingles for Jeep and Sheetz commercials,[54] Cree LED Lighting,[55] Honda, and in films such as Employee of the Month and The Hollywood Dream.

Personal life[edit]

Lindsay is based out of Charlotte, North Carolina. He attended Queens University of Charlotte earning a B.A. in English in 2003. While a student at Queens he participated in the International Experience Program, studying art in Italy in the summer of 2002. In 2005, he received an MFA in fiction writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His father is a trained organist and Episcopalian minister, and his mother is a teacher and children's book author. He has one sibling, a fraternal twin brother. Lindsay's childhood was spent between Oregon, Montana and North Carolina.


  • In 2002, Lindsay won Queens University of Charlotte's Marjorie Blankenship Melton Award for his poem "Francis The Cabbie."
  • In 2004, Lindsay was nominated for Best Musical Director, Best Composer (Original Score), and Newcomer of The Year at Creative Loafing's Theatre Awards for his work on The Farm Theatre's adaptation of Mac Wellman's Description Beggared or the Allegory of WHITENESS.[56]
  • In 2010, Lindsay won Creative Loafing Charlotte's categories for Best Male Vocalist and Best Songwriter.[57]
  • In 2010, Lindsay's song "Bring the Old You Back" was included in the "Top 10 Tracks of the Year" by[58]
  • On February 9, 2011, Lindsay's Album Escape From Plaza-Midwood was included in Goldmine Magazine's "Top 20 CD's of 2010".[59]
  • On May 10, 2011, Lindsay was nominated for Best Musical Director and Best Composer for his work on ThomThom, by Machine Theatre. Lindsay composed an original score for the piece, which was also nominated for Theatre Event of The Year.[60]



Magic Winter & the Dirty South EP (independently released in 2009, then re-issued February 2011 on Chocolate Lab Records)
Escape From Plaza-Midwood LP (August 17, 2010, Chocolate Lab Records)
Coping Strategies 7-inch EP (August 17, 2010, Chocolate Lab Records)
Could It Be Christmas? EP (Nov 29, 2011, Bear Hearts Fox Records)
Summer Wilderness Program LP (June 26, 2012, Bear Hearts Fox Records)
Cities and Schools LP (forthcoming, TBA)

The Young Sons[edit]

Hearts Inc. LP (2008, independently released)

The Catch Fire[edit]

Rumormill LP (Dec 6, 2011 No More Fake Labels)

NC Music Love Army[edit]

We Are Not For Sale: Songs of Protest LP (Nov. 26, 2013, Redeye Distribution)
Dear Mr. McCrory - featuring American Aquarium and Caitlin Cary (forthcoming single, Sept. 2, 2014, Redeye Distribution)


Raised By Wolves – Return to the House of Ill Repute LP (2009, Giant Panda)[61]
Stephen Warwick & the Secondhand Stories – Talking Machine LP (2010)[62]
Twelve Thousand Armies – North Carolina LP (2011)[63]
Twelve Thousand Armies - Tiger Beat LP (2013)
Old Milwaukee – Hide A Light EP (2011)[64]

Original Musical Theatre Scores Composed[edit]

Description Beggared: The Allegory of Whiteness - 2003 (for The Farm Theatre, Charlotte, NC)
ThomThom (If That Bird Won't Sing) - 2010 (for Machine Theatre, Charlotte, NC)


  1. ^ Hahne, Jeff (March 3, 2009). "Creative Loafing: Young Sons Songs See Light of Day". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  2. ^ "''Hearts Inc''. by The Young Sons on Itunes". July 15, 2008. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  3. ^ Hahne, Jeff (December 12, 2007). "Benji Hughes and Band back in studio". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  4. ^ Lawson, Kimberly. "Creative Loafing: Benji Hughes and Band". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  5. ^ posted May 24, 2010 (May 24, 2010). "Jon Lindsay (Benji Hughes/The Young Sons/Carlisle/Nicole Atkins)". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  6. ^ "''Magic Winter & the Dirty South'' on itunes". January 1, 2009. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  7. ^ Argyrakis, Andy. "Wallet Pop on Jon Lindsay". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Press". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  9. ^ Schreiber, Barbara (September 22, 2009). "Creative Loafing: ThomThom Open Workshop Review CL Charlotte". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  10. ^ Schreiber, Barbara (July 13, 2010). "ThomThom Duke Energy Theatre Performances Reivew". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Arts a la Mode Review of ThomThom". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  12. ^ Charlotte Viewpoint on Machine Theatre
  13. ^ Hahne, Jeff (May 17, 2010). "Creative Loafing: Jon Lindsay Signs to Chocolate Lab Records (May 2010)". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  14. ^ "Rhythm Online UK: Jon Lindsay's Debut Album". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  15. ^ Consequence Of Sound Review of Escape From Plaza-Midwood
  16. ^ Magazine, Roctober (February 13, 2011). "Coping Strategies/Escape From Plaza-Midwood Review at RocktoberReviews". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Jon Lindsay at". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Frequent Flyer" Free MP3 at Magnet Magazine
  19. ^ [1][dead link]
  20. ^ ""Futuretown" Free MP3 at AOL Spinner". July 31, 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  21. ^ Jon Lindsay Daytrotter Session
  22. ^ "Blurt review of Escape From Plaza-Midwood". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  23. ^ "Blogcritics review of Escape From Plaza-Midwood". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  24. ^ Devores, Courtney (October 1, 2010). "Jon Lindsay Charlotte Observer Sunday Arts Feature". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  25. ^ "Jon Lindsay TV appearance on Chica-go-go". Youtube. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  26. ^ Oeur, Freeden. "Pop Matters Reviews Escape From Plaza-Midwood: 8 of 10 stars". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  27. ^ Powerpopaholic 8.0 Review of Escape From Plaza-Midwood[dead link]
  28. ^ "Shuffle Magazine Feature: Jon Lindsay's Escape From Plaza-Midwood". July 9, 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  29. ^ "Jon Lindsay's Escape From Plaza-Midwood: 7.6 Review". Surviving the Golden Age. August 19, 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  30. ^ Griffith, Spencer. "Jon Lindsay's Escape From Plaza-Midwood: Independent Weekly Review". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  31. ^ Cohen, Anne (October 7, 2010). "The Rock And Roll Report Reviews Escape From Plaza-Midwood by Jon Lindsay". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  32. ^ "Jon Lindsay Visulite Theatre show preview in Charlotte Magazine". August 28, 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  33. ^ Performer Magazine Review of Escape From Plaza-Midwood
  34. ^ "Shuffle Magazine #8: Escape From Plaza-Midwood Review". July 9, 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  35. ^ Door Jon Lindsay (December 16, 2011). "During The Beauty Shortage by Jon Lindsay". Youtube. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  36. ^ Jon Lindsay signs music publishing deal with North Star Media
  37. ^ Parker, Chris (November 23, 2011). "Jon Lindsay live at Tin Roof show preview (staff pick) and new album feature story". Charleston City Paper. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  38. ^ "AND THE HITS JUST KEEP ON...". Retrieved January 27, 2013. 
  39. ^ Devores, Courtney (December 13, 2011). "Charlotte Observer "Could It Be Christmas?". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  40. ^ December 14, 2011 (December 14, 2011). "The Blue Indian features "Castles in France" by Jon Lindsay, from his COULD IT BE CHRISTMAS? EP". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  41. ^ "Free Download Of Could It Be Christmas? By Jon Lindsay". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  42. ^ Oeur, Freeden. "Partner FREE DOWNLOAD in Pop Matters". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  43. ^ Hahne, Jeff (January 3, 2012). "Creative Loafing ''Rumormill'' Review". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  44. ^ The Catch Fire Best of 2011 Charlotte Viewpoint
  45. ^ Name * (January 13, 2012). "Rumormill by The Catch Fire: Editor's Pick, Shuffle Magazine". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  46. ^ Devores, Courtney (December 27, 2011). "Rumormill by The Catch Fire: Best of 2011, The Charlotte Observer". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  47. ^ "Best Albums of 2011 by Niner Online". December 6, 2011. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  48. ^ Jon Lindsay at Joe's Pub NYC
  49. ^ NCMLA Indy Week Feature Story
  50. ^ NCMLA News and Observer Feature Story
  51. ^ NCMLA Television Feature on ABC
  52. ^ Herald Sun Feature Story
  53. ^ Jon Lindsay/Lea Michele NYLONG TV
  54. ^ "Sheetz Commercial on Youtube". Youtube. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  55. ^ "Cree Lures Beautiful People". Adrants. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  56. ^ Schreiber, Barbara (February 18, 2004). "Creative Loafing Theatre Awards, Best of Charlotte Nominations 2004". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  57. ^ Hahne, Jeff. "Creative Loafing: Best of Charlotte 2010". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  58. ^ "Blog Critics Top 10 Songs of 2010". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  59. ^ Posted in Blogs, Power Pop PlusComments (1) (February 9, 2011). "Goldmine Magazine's Top 20 CD's of 2010". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  60. ^ Schreiber, Barbara (May 10, 2011). "2011 Charlotte Theatre Award Nominations". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  61. ^ Hahne, Jeff (October 28, 2008). "Raised By Wolves Album Preview". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  62. ^ "Shuffle Magazine: Stephen Warwick Story". April 14, 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  63. ^ Griffith, Spencer. "Jon Lindsay Indy Weekly Review". Retrieved January 17, 2012. 
  64. ^ "Hide A Light by Old Milwaukee". September 21, 2011. Retrieved January 17, 2012. 

External links[edit]