JON POPE

Jon
Jon presenting a programme on local radio
Jon with guitar
Jon writing one of his early compositions

JON POPE – BAND BIOGRAPHY

Jon Pope has been singing since birth, from a family of seven children who were well known in local talent contests performing songs from 'The Sound of Music'.

Started playing the guitar in early teens to accompany his efforts at song writing. Joined his first band at 16 performing 60's hits and some original songs in a band called 'Hot Spice'. After a period of little success joined 'The Rock Philharmonic' which although successful, had too many members to be a commercial venture and eventually left when they became 'City Lights'.

Jon continued writing and playing with Geoff Badham, and eventually got recognised after a spot on local radio,consequently recording several original songs at Vineyard Studios in London. Like many, became the victim of unscrupulous operators and was for several years disillusioned with the music industry. But as he says "It kind of gets in your soul" and soon returned to look after his brother's band, 'Sidewinder', later becoming 'Careless Talk' and eventually reforming as 'Back To Scratch'.

During this period Jon was engineering and writing songs for the band and long after their demise continued PA engineering duties for many local bands and events. His back room studio soon became far too restrictive and after moving to a bigger house constructed a purpose built studio where many a long night has been spent honing the latest project.

Jon was approached by a group of local musicians and formed the band 'Luce Blewes', which reformed 10 years ago and are currently known as 'Last Orders'.

He continued his love of creating live sound whilst engineering for bands including 'Country Pie' and 'The Bristol Comets'.

"The first time I heard Jon sing", says Rowland, "was 1994 at a charity bash in aid of St Peter's Hospice. It was organised by our band at the time 'Country Pie'. It was a big gig, four bands, plus four guest artists and starred singer songwriting legend 'Roger Cook', it was an immense task for any PA crew and desk engineer. Jon was great, he was so laid back and made it all look so easy. But that wasn't all, he also sang that night with 'Luce Blewes' (his band at the time) and he was really special".

Without hesitation, Rowland asked Jon if he was interested in forming a duo and they had a successful seven years as popular duo called 'FX 2000'.

"Being a great vocalist and PA engineer, it was obvious that Jon would also be a fabulous asset singing with our band 'Country Pie'" said Rowland, and in 1995 Jon became a band member.

Meanwhile the band was changing from country rock to rock'n'roll, Rowland was forming 'Rockola' the band you know today, and the rest as they say, is history.