Jon Moss

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Jon Moss
Moss playing with Bob Weston on 'Spring Heeled Jack' for a blues night jamming session.
Background information
Born (1957-09-11) 11 September 1957 (age 58)
Years active 1976–present
Associated acts
Notable instruments

Jonathan "Jon" Aubrey Moss is an English drummer, best known as a member of the 1980s pop group Culture Club. He has also played with other bands, including London, The Nips,[1] The Damned and Adam & The Ants.

Early life[edit]

Moss was born in Clapham Jewish Boys Home at Wandsworth, South London, and was adopted when six months old by Rosetta (née Goldsmith, b. 1929) and Lionel Moss (b. 1927, d. 1999),[2] an upper-middle-class couple of Jewish ancestry. His father owned a clothing store called Alkit, located at Cambridge Circus.[3][4] He grew up in Hampstead, attending Arnold House School (1962–1970) and Highgate School (1970–1975).

During Moss's childhood, music began an important role in his life, and he used to play well-known songs on his family piano. His elder brother, David, was drummer in a school band and had a Wayward drum kit, which Jon borrowed to start playing when thirteen years old.[5]

At Highgate School, Moss developed a fascination for sports, especially boxing, and basket weaving but he did not want a professional sporting career. It was also at Highgate that he formed his first band, "Pig Williams", along with his friend Nick Feldman (who would later become a member and co-founder of Wang Chung). Together they performed at several school events. After finishing high school, Jon held various jobs, including working at his father's clothing store, as a cake salesman and as a sound engineer at Marquee Studios. In spite of regarding a college graduation as a waste of time, he briefly considered the idea of studying Greek at the University of Cambridge.[6]

Musical career[edit]

Jon (second from right) with London

Beginning (1976–80)[edit]

Alongside his friend Riff Regan, Moss joined the punk band London in 1976,[7][8][9] after being tried out as a drummer with The Clash, later, he said, "The mix of personalities didn't work. Their attitudes were too different to mine."[9] London released a single entitled, "Everyone's a Winner," and were managed by Simon Napier-Bell. Eventually, they recorded two singles, a 4 track EP and an album for MCA Records in 1977.[10] Following, Moss went on tour with the established punk group, The Stranglers, and the band got a record deal.

Soon afterward, Moss began drumming with The Damned. He replaced Rat Scabies, who had quit the band. He made the final decision to join them, after he was injured in a car crash on New Year's Eve 1977, when he suffered fractures to his face (his injuries required 250 stitches), resulting in a broken nose and a week's hospital stay.[5][11]

He played with Adam and the Ants, before their commercial success, on their third single "Cartrouble" and the b-side "Kick!". At the time, Moss was with a group called Jane Aire & The Belvederes, and under contract with that band. Therefore, he is credited under the pseudonym "Terry 1 & 2."[12]

Culture Club – Early times (1981–86)[edit]

Moss was advised by a friend that Boy George was looking for a drummer for his band. When he became a member of the band originally called "In Praise of Lemmings," he suggested changing the name of the group to Culture Club in reference to the various ethnic backgrounds of the members.

In 1985, whilst still performing with Culture Club, he produced some tracks for the band Woyeyeh.[13]

Moss at Move Away Culture Club 7" vinyl

Other works and Culture Club reunion (1987–2002)[edit]

After Culture Club, Jon released a single with the group "Heartbeat UK," entitled "Jump To It", which he also produced.

In 1989, under the name "Rubberman," Moss released one white label of an acid house instrumental track (Boy George used that backing track to create his own song "After The Love," which was released as a single by Jesus Loves You).

During 1991–92, Moss was involved in another group, Promised Land, with his school friend, Nick Feldman. The two released a couple singles, "Something In The Air" and "Circle In The Square," and also a self-titled album.

In 1995, he met Sebastian Wocker, vocalist of the indie band, "Yeah," and joined them afterwards. For two years, the group played several concerts on the London circuit, made various television appearances and filmed one video Engerland in 1997 at the former home of Hendon F.C.. Their last concert was at The Underworld on Camden in 1998.

Moss was a part of the Culture Club reformation between 1998 and 2002.

Charities, b-side projects (2003–10)[edit]

From 2003-05, Jon joined several punk rock and rock bands, among them: "Fassbender," "DanMingo" and Dirth. In July 2005, he played drums on the charity single, "People I Don't Know Are Trying to Kill Me," written by the journalist, Neil McCormick, to help the families of the victims of the terrorist bombings in London.[14] He has also performed and recorded with the London-based singer and songwriter, Anca.

In 2006, Moss, Mikey Craig and Phil Pickett, tried to launch Culture Club on a new tour with another lead singer, as George and Roy Hay had declined to tour.[15] An UK tour was announced for December 2006, but was postponed to give the new line-up time to finish recording their album. Without official press statements, in 2007, band manager Tony Gordon, said that the project was "on hold," while Jon stated that the project was shelved.[16]

He was interviewed by the "Hampstead Village Voice" about his early life and career in May 2009.

In 2010, Moss also played a few gigs with the band "Plastic Heroes."

Culture Club – Reunion (2011–present)[edit]

Jon Moss is involved with the reunion of Culture Club, which was rumoured to include a new album and a world tour. However, he did not appear in the band's concerts in Dubai and Sydney in December 2011, due to a back injury which required surgery.[17] Despite rumours that the reunion project has been shelved, Boy George said in an interview with Danny Baker on BBC Radio 5, which aired on March 2012, that their new album would be released in 2013, but George did not mention any date for a tour.[18]

Meanwhile, Jon had been drumming with "Mad Dog Bites," alongside: Martin French (vocals), Godfrey Old (harmonica), Peter Noone (bass) and Conrad Blakemore (guitar).[19] Bob Weston was their guitarist until his death in January 2012.

In the Red Nose Day '13 at Whiteleys, Moss sung with The Rock Choir, helping them to fundraise for Comic Relief.[20]

Personal life[edit]

Jon Moss has three children:[21][22] Clyde (b. July 1997), Julia (b. March 2000) and Leon (b. June 2003) by his ex-wife Barbara (Babs). His current partner is Alexandra, sister of his long-time friend, Nick Feldman.[23]

Moss had a sexual relationship with Boy George during the height of Culture Club's popularity, although it was not public knowledge at the time. Their affair came to an end in 1986, and was portrayed in "Worried About the Boy", a drama film shown on BBC2.[24] Before his involvement with George, Moss had a fiancée, Caroline.[21][25]


  1. ^ "The Nipple Erectors - Shannne Bradley Interview". 2001-08-26. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  2. ^ "Jonathan Aubrey Moss -". Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  3. ^ Village, Hampstead (2009-05-13). "Hampstead Village Voice Blog..Blagg...whatever you fancy!: May 2009". Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  4. ^ "Fanny COHEN nee MOSS London". Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  5. ^ a b [1][dead link]
  6. ^ "Official Culture Club Website". Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  7. ^ biography on London
  8. ^ Rimmer, Dave (1985) "Like Punk Never Happened," Faber and Faber, ISBN 978-0-571-13739-8, p. 40-42
  9. ^ a b Kasper de Graaf & Malcolm Garrett (1983) "When Cameras Go Crazy - Culture Club," Virgin Books, ISBN 0-907080-85-5, p. 62
  10. ^ Napier-Bell, Simon (2001) "Black Vinyl White Powder," Ebury Press, ISBN 978-0-09-186992-2, p. 163
  11. ^ "Chapter 2: The Bubble Bursts". 1957-09-24. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  12. ^ Ant, Adam. "Cartrouble". Universal Music Publishing Group. 
  13. ^ "JON MOSS | Shows + Photos + Biography + More | Portland Show-Guide". Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  14. ^ "Bono told me: 'Your song needs to be heard now'". Daily Telegraph (19 July 2005). Retrieved on 9 July 2011.
  15. ^ Culture Club#Reunions
  16. ^ "Boy George's ex-bandmates slam singer". Usatoday.Com. 2006-11-02. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  17. ^ "2012 ➤ Moss misses Culture Club's new dawn in Australia | ➢➢ Shapers of the 80s ➣➣". 2012-01-02. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  18. ^ "Boy George gets black eye in nightclub attack". Gay Star News. 2012-04-05. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  19. ^ "Mad Dog Bites - Talking 'Bout You - Hampstead Xmas Festival 2012". YouTube. 2013-01-05. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  20. ^ "Rock Choir and Christina support Red Nose Day!". 2013-03-11. Retrieved 2013-06-17. 
  21. ^ a b Jon Moss: Personal Life
  22. ^ Bright, Spencer (7 May 2010). "Boy George: I don't mind them showing me picking pockets and having tortured affairs so long as they get my clothes right". Daily Mail. Retrieved 28 May 2013. 
  23. ^ Surprising update on Culture Club’s Jon Moss
  24. ^ Worried About The Boy at the Internet Movie Database
  25. ^ Boy George on Bio

External links[edit]