Jon Foreman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Jon Foreman
Jon Foreman in April 2008
Jon Foreman in April 2008
Background information
Birth nameJonathan Mark Foreman
Born (1976-10-22) October 22, 1976 (age 44)
San Bernardino County, California
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter, guitarist
InstrumentsVocals, guitar
Years active1996–present
Labelslowercase people
Associated actsSwitchfoot, Fiction Family

Jonathan Mark Foreman (born October 22, 1976) is an American musician, the lead singer, guitarist, main songwriter and co-founder of the alternative rock band Switchfoot. He started Switchfoot in 1996 with drummer Chad Butler and his brother Tim Foreman on bass guitar. Jerome Fontamillas and Drew Shirley later joined the band.

Personal life[edit]

Foreman was born in San Bernardino County, California, but his family moved to Massachusetts and Virginia Beach during his childhood. There he became fast friends with Todd Cooper, who encouraged him to learn guitar.[1] Cooper was later a guitar tech for Switchfoot, although he left in 2005 to pursue his own musical career.

After several years, Foreman and his family moved back to Southern California, this time settling in San Diego. He graduated from San Dieguito Academy in the North County Coastal area of San Diego, California. Foreman attended UC San Diego and later dropped out to follow his singing career.[2]

Foreman married Emily Masen in 2002, and the couple had a daughter in 2012.[3]

One of Foreman's favorite pastimes is surfing,[2] and when not on tour, he resides in Cardiff-by-the-Sea, a small suburb of San Diego, California.[3]

Foreman is a committed nondenominational Christian; however, his goal with Switchfoot has always been to make music for all people. "For us, these songs are for everyone. Calling us 'Christian rock' tends to be a box that closes some people out and excludes them. And that's not what we're trying to do. Music has always opened my mind — and that's what we want".[4]

Foreman's father, Mark, serves as the senior pastor of North Coast Calvary Chapel.[5] His mother is Jan (née Carlton).[6]


Foreman cites Elliott Smith,[7] U2,[2] The Police,[7] James Taylor,[7] The Beatles, Radiohead,[8] Bach, Ronny Jordan, Miles Davis, Keith Green, Nirvana, Johnny Cash,[2] Bob Dylan,[2] and Led Zeppelin as some of his musical influences.[9] In 2001 he was awarded the "Les Paul Horizon Award" for the most promising up-and-coming guitarist at the annual Orville H. Gibson Guitar Awards in Los Angeles.[10]

Side projects[edit]

Jon Foreman performing with Switchfoot in 2015

Besides being the main songwriter for Switchfoot, Foreman has also made musical contributions away from the band, including writing with San Diego/Orange County based singer and songwriter Molly Jenson.[11] Foreman has also contributed to the books The Art of Being [12] and New Way to be Human,[13] the latter written by producer Charlie Peacock. He also appeared on Relient K's 2007 album, Five Score and Seven Years Ago, lending his vocal talents to the song "Deathbed". In September 2009, Jazz musician Karl Denson released the album "Brother's Keeper" in which two songs were co-written by Foreman, and one song, "Drums of War", was solely written by Foreman.[14] Foreman also provided his vocals in accompaniment with Denson on the song "Drums of War".[15] He collaborated with Ryan O'Neal for the Sleeping at Last song "Birthright".[16]

Fiction Family[edit]

In 2006, Foreman and Nickel Creek member Sean Watkins started collaborating on a duo project originally called "The Real SeanJon", which was later renamed "Fiction Family".[17] Their self-titled debut, Fiction Family, was released on January 20, 2009.

"The album was recorded and written in parts because Nickel Creek and Switchfoot are both hard working, touring acts, we were rarely home from tour at the same time," says Foreman. "Consequently the tracks were passed back and forth between Sean and I. Whoever was home from tour would chip away at the songs with no real expectations at all, mainly just for ourselves and for the love of the song I suppose. We came up with a few cowboy rules for the project: No double tracking. No pussyfooting. No tuning of vocals."[18]

In November 2012, the band released an extended play titled Holiday EP. Their second studio album, Fiction Family Reunion, was released on January 29, 2013.

Solo projects[edit]

Foreman has also worked on various solo projects, independently releasing four EPs, titled Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer. For the project, Foreman teamed with Credential Recordings in a partnership with Switchfoot's imprint record label, lowercase people records.[19] In October 2008, Foreman released a collection of songs from his seasonal EPs along with two new tracks. The collection is entitled Limbs and Branches.

In April 2009, he was GMA Dove Award-nominated for Male Vocalist of the Year.[20]

In November 2014, Foreman announced four EPs under the name The Wonderlands. They are titled Sunlight, Shadows, Darkness and Dawn, and contain 25 songs across the four albums; one for each hour of the day with one extra.[21] They were released in 2015.[22][23] The records were a collaborative effort, with each song produced by a different producer, and Foreman sending in tracks recorded backstage while on tour.[21] All four EPs were mixed by Future of Forestry's Eric Owyoung.[24]

Songwriting style[edit]

Foreman's songwriting tends to be very dynamic, and he often employs a wide range of different instrumentation, including, but not limited to: guitar, violin, cello, trumpet, mandolin, sitar, flute, saxophone, clarinet, synthesizer, piano, miscellaneous percussion, and harmonica. Foreman has always aimed to use interesting instrumentation when writing for Switchfoot, mostly on some of the band's first albums such as The Legend of Chin, New Way to Be Human, and Learning to Breathe.

Solo discography[edit]

Extended plays[edit]

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Album details Peak chart positions




  • Released: January 15, 2008
  • Label: Credential
  • Format: Digital download
  • Released: March 25, 2008
  • Label: lowercase people/Credential
  • Format: Digital download
  • Released: June 10, 2008
  • Label: Credential
  • Format: Digital download
162 6
The Wonderlands: Sunlight
  • Released: May 26, 2015
  • Label: lowercase people
  • Formats: Digital download
104 2 9 11 2
The Wonderlands: Shadows
  • Released: July 17, 2015
  • Label: lowercase people
  • Format: Digital download
[B] 4 20 26 8
The Wonderlands: Darkness
  • Released: September 4, 2015
  • Label: lowercase people
  • Format: Digital download
[C] 7 22 30 3
The Wonderlands: Dawn
  • Released: October 23, 2015
  • Label: lowercase people
  • Format: Digital download
11 35 6
25 IN 24[32]
  • Released: March 30, 2016
  • Label: lowercase people
  • Format: Digital download

Box sets / compilation albums[edit]

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Album details Peak chart positions


Fall & Winter
  • Released: January 15, 2008
  • Label: Credential
  • Formats: CD, vinyl
33 24
Spring & Summer
  • Released: June 24, 2008
  • Label: Credential
  • Formats: CD, vinyl
Limbs and Branches
  • Released: October 28, 2008
  • Label: Credential
  • Formats: CD, digital download
The Wonderlands: Sunlight & Shadows
  • label: lowercase people
  • Formats: CD
The Wonderlands: Darkness & Dawn
  • label: lowercase people
  • Formats: CD


Year Title Peak chart positions Album
2007 "The Cure for Pain" Fall (EP)
2008 "Your Love Is Strong" Spring (EP)
2015 "Caroline"[citation needed] The Wonderlands: Sunlight (EP)
2016 "Your Love Is Enough (The Inland Mix)"
[citation needed]
non-album single

*Original version is on The Wonderlands: Shadows (EP)

Other appearances[edit]


  1. ^ Spring (EP) did not enter the Billboard 200, but peaked at number 14 on the Top Digital Albums chart.[30]
  2. ^ The Wonderlands: Shadows (EP) did not enter the Billboard 200, but peaked at number 89 on the Top Current Albums chart.[31]
  3. ^ The Wonderlands: Darkness (EP) did not enter the Billboard 200, but peaked at number 99 on the Top Album Sales chart.[31]
  4. ^ Chart peaks are for the original version.


  1. ^ Interview with Todd Cooper[dead link]
  2. ^ a b c d e "JON FOREMAN BIOGRAPHY". Retrieved September 22, 2014.[permanent dead link]
  3. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 1, 2015. Retrieved September 21, 2014.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Jon Foreman Bio
  4. ^ "Switchfoot steps toward stardom". Retrieved September 22, 2014.
  5. ^ "Our Staff - North Coast Calvary Chapel". Retrieved June 26, 2019.
  6. ^ John Wilkens (January 14, 2019). "Birthday surprise for WWII pilot reunited with pieces of his past". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  7. ^ a b c "The Dark Horse: Joan of Arc, Elliot Smith and Me". The Huffington Post. Retrieved November 8, 2016.
  8. ^ "Switchfoot Evicted By Radiohead, Embraced By Rock Radio". MTV News. Retrieved September 22, 2014.
  9. ^ QUESTIONS ABOUT THE GUYS[dead link]
  10. ^ Switchfoot Archived May 11, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ "Molly Jenson (Maybe Tomorrow review)". March 6, 2009. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011.
  12. ^ "The Art of Being Book". Archived from the original on May 16, 2013. Retrieved September 22, 2014.
  13. ^ "New Way to Be Human: A Provocative Look at What It Means to Follow Jesus". WaterBrook Multnomah. Retrieved September 22, 2014.
  14. ^ Jurek, Thom. "Review". Allmusic. Retrieved March 11, 2015.
  15. ^ "Review of Karl Denson's Tiny Universe "Brother's Keeper". Retrieved March 8, 2012.
  16. ^ O'Neil, Ryan. ""Birthright" & how it was made". Archived from the original on April 2, 2015.
  17. ^ "Nickel Creek official website". Retrieved March 8, 2012.
  18. ^ "Exclusive: Nickel Creek, Switchfoot Members Start New Band". Spin. October 3, 2008. Retrieved September 22, 2014.
  19. ^ Jon Foreman from Switchfoot to release solo EPs + MP3 Archived February 16, 2008, at the Wayback Machine - Published November 27, 2007 (retrieved April 21, 2009)
  20. ^ Kim Jones. "40th Annual Dove Awards Nominees & Winners". Retrieved April 24, 2009.
  21. ^ a b "The Rabbit Room - Jon Foreman Discusses The Wonderlands series". Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  22. ^ "The Wonderlands, A Musical Planet of Songs for Every Hour of the Day". Land of Broken Hearts. Retrieved March 11, 2015.[permanent dead link]
  23. ^ "Switchfoot's Jon Foreman Reveals Plans to Release Four EPs in 2015 – 'Sunlight, Shadows, Darkness and Dawn'". BREATHEcast. November 10, 2014. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  24. ^ "No Limits on This Record: Interview with Future of Forestry". January 12, 2017. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  25. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  26. ^ a b "Jon Foreman Chart History: Christian Albums". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  27. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History: Alternative Albums". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  28. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History: Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  29. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History: Americana/Folk Albums". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  30. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History: Top Digital Albums". Billboard. Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  31. ^ a b "Jon Foreman Chart History: Top Current Albums". Billboard. Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  32. ^ "25 IN 24 Collector's Bundle — Jon Foreman". Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  33. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History: Heatseekers Albums". Billboard. Retrieved May 16, 2019.
  34. ^ "Jon Foreman Chart History - Christian Hot AC/CHR". Retrieved July 17, 2019.

External links[edit]