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Jont Performing at one of his Unlit nights.jpg
Jont Performing at Unlit
Background information
Birth name Jonathan Mark Smith Whittington
Born (1973-08-17) 17 August 1973 (age 43)
Marylebone, London, England
Origin United Kingdom
Genres Rock, Pop
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter
Years active 2000–present
Labels Unlit

Jont (Full name Jonathan Mark Smith Whittington, 17 August 1973 in Marylebone, London)[1] is a British Singer-songwriter. First achieving prominence as a slow left-arm spinner for Middlesex County Cricket Club,[2] he then shifted focus to poetry then to music. He is perhaps best known for his song Sweetheart which appears on the soundtrack to the 2005 US comedy film Wedding Crashers. Two tracks from his 2008 album Supernatural were featured in Season Five of US medical drama Grey's Anatomy.


Early years[edit]

Dividing his youth between the USA and England, Jont first started writing poems aged fourteen[3] While still a teenager he toured the United States conducting interviews with a series of prominent American poets including Allen Ginsberg and Jonathan Williams.[4] Returning to England at age eighteen, Whittington began playing for Middlesex as a slow left-arm spinner and Phil Tufnell's number two.[1] He made a single first-class appearance for the county against Cambridge University at Fenner's in 1992,[5] with Whittington not required to bat in the match, while with the ball he went wicketless.[6] During this period he attended Manchester University to study English and American Literature

Music career[edit]

Frustrated with the limited reception his poetry was achieving, Whittington started performing as a musician in the groups Your Baby and Funnybone before going solo. After leaving University he moved to London, attaining a residency at the 12 Bar Club which he called Unlit.[7] Over the next five years he would play host to and perform with such artists as Tom Baxter, Polly Paulusma, Solomon (later to become The Duke Spirit), Boo Hewerdine, Archie Bronson Outfit, Adem and Antonio Forcione.

During this time Whittington recorded his first albums, Life Is Fine and "28" on his own label Unlit Records.[8]

In 2003 Whittington moved to New York whereupon he began regularly performing with artists such as Joan As Policewoman and Artanker Convoy. During this period he was taken under the wing of Fleetwood Mac manager Tony Dimitriades in Los Angeles and, after moving to Hollywood, began working with several producers including Tom Rothrock, Bill Laswell and Mushroom from Massive Attack.

In 2005 he released the EP One Long Song which was awarded four stars from Q Magazine. The track, You Can Be The Stars, was given high rotation on Dermot O'Leary's BBC Radio 2 show and Whittington appeared on the show to perform live. His cover of Goldfrapp's Number 1 was subsequently released on the compilation album The Saturday Sessions: The Dermot O'Leary Show. The song Sweetheart from the EP was used during the end credits of the Hollywood comedy Wedding Crashers. In the summer of 2006, Whittington toured the USA. Following this tour at the invitation of the BBC performed as part of the Electric Proms.[9][10]

2008 saw the release of the album Supernatural, recorded in Paris and London. In September the track Another Door Closes, was featured in the Season Five premiere of the US medical drama, Grey's Anatomy and received airplay from Jonathan Ross on BBC Radio 2.

In March 2009 the track Don't Waste All Your Tears was featured in Season Seven of CBS primetime show Without A Trace and the song Sweetheart was featured in Season Five of Grey's Anatomy in April.[11]

Jont released his third studio album Set It Free in May 2010 followed by his fourth album Whole Again in November 2010 - the first to be released solely thoroughly through his own webstore.[12]


In the summer of 2006, Whittington posted a message on his Myspace profile essentially inviting people to offer their homes as venues for his tour of USA - a concept simply tagged Unlit. Cameraman Dave Depares joined him to document the tour, and the resulting ten-part video blog series was posted on YouTube entitled The State We're In.

From April to May 2008 Whittington and Depares filmed a second ten-part series of their video blog, this time entitled The House We're In and taking Unlit to Myspace user's houses in the UK.

Shortly after this UK telecoms company Orange commissioned a third series of the show, called The Road We're On, as part of their "I Am Everyone" campaign.[13] Episodes were premiered on Myspace a week before being posted on YouTube. Eight episodes were posted, plus a twenty-minute retrospective documentary, which was posted on Dailymotion.

The Unlit series has been viewed by over two million people.[14]

In October 2008 in conjunction with the BBC Radio 2's Dermot O'Leary show and the BBC's Electric Proms, the Unlit series culminated in an Electric Proms/Unlit event in North London.[15]

"Unlit has developed from an underground movement to a viral phenomenon worldwide" - The Guardian[16]


Studio albums[edit]

  • "Hello Halifax" (unlit records) (2012)
  • Whole Again (Unlit Records) (2010)
  • Set It Free (Unlit Records) (2010)
  • Supernatural (Unlit Records) (2008)
  • One Long Song (Everybody's Records) (2005)
  • Everything You Need To Know About Life In 74 minutes (Private) (2002 Italy, 200 copies made for Italian tour)
  • 28 (Unlit Records) (2002 Italy, 2008 Rest of World)
  • Life Is Fine (1998)

Single releases[edit]

Single/EP Release date Label Format(s) Notes
"All My Life" 24 May 2010 Unlit Records Download Accompanied by b-side "The Other Side"
"Enjoy The Good Times" 28 December 2009 Unlit Records Download First track from new album Set It Free - accompanied by b-side "Good Luck In New York" on iTunes and extra b-side "Kasbah de Freija" on artist's webstore
"Sweetheart (Radio Mix)" 5 December 2008 Unlit Records Download New version of the track featured on the album Supernatural
"Let's Roll" 13 October 2008 Unlit Records Download Previously unreleased track taken from the Orange Unlit Tour series
"Candlelit (Radio Edit)" 21 April 2008 Unlit Records Download Accompanied by Indiestore-exclusive b-sides "City of The Sun" & "Mosque"
"You Can Be The Stars" 13 March 2006 Everybody's Records CD, Download Accompanied by b-sides "House Of Dreaming" and "We Are The Grapefruit"
"When The Time Comes" 2000 Cat Morning CDs CD Accompanied by b-sides "Taking My Time", "The Blackout Song" and "When The Time Comes (Live)"
"In Your Eyes" 2000 Peoplesound CD Accompanied by b-sides "Splendour" and "The Book That Never Touches The Ground"
"Spring 2000" 2000 Peoplesound CD Three tracks - "When The Time Comes", "The Book That Never Touches The Ground" and "Count To Ten (Live)"


  1. ^ a b Author Unknown. From Trent Bridge to the Social 19/11/05. Retrieved 25 September 2008.
  2. ^ Palmer, Judith. Arts: The Mad Cow Collective 14/06/96. The Independent. Retrieved 29 September 2008.
  3. ^ Verzeletti, Christian. Jont Interview 18/12/02. Mescalina. Retrieved 25 September 2008.
  4. ^ Howell, J. Because It’s Real: Q & A with Jont 30/05/08. Retrieved 25 September 2008.
  5. ^ "First-Class Matches played by Jonathan Whittington". CricketArchive. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  6. ^ "Cambridge University v Middlesex, 1992". CricketArchive. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  7. ^ Howell, J. Because It’s Real: Q & A with Jont 30/05/08. Retrieved 25 September 2008.
  8. ^ Author Unknown. The New Indie Acoustic Scene Date Unknown. Retrieved 29 September 2008.
  9. ^ BBC Electric Proms - Next Stage Tour
  10. ^ Huw Stephens BBC Electric Proms Blog
  11. ^ Grey's Anatomy Season Five YouTube
  12. ^ Jont Blog
  13. ^ I am Everyone Orange
  14. ^ JontMusic YouTube
  15. ^ Author Unknown. BBC Radio 2 - Dermot O'Leary. Retrieved 25 September 2008.
  16. ^ Angela Balakrishnan Angela Balakrishnan on Unlit Events The Guardian

External links[edit]