Jon B. Biography

Jon B. Recorded with Babyface and Tupac Shakur, Composed for Toni Braxton

Jon B.
Jon B. (Steve Snowden/WireImage)

Jon B. is an award-winning R&B recording artist, composer, and producer best known for the singles "Someone To Love" and "They Don't Know/Are U Still  Down."

Early Life

Jon B. was born Jonathan Buck on November 11, 1974, into a musical family in Providence, Rhode Island. He was raised in Pasadena, California. His parents worked as a concert pianist and music professor, and his grandparents owned a music store.

By the time Jon was in his mid-teens, he was not only honing his vocal skills but also had learned to play multiple musical instruments including the piano, bass guitar, and drums. When he was 18, he attracted the attention of record label executive Tracey Edmonds, who was then the wife of Kenny Edmonds, better known as Babyface.

Early Career

Tracey Edmonds and Babyface initially hired Jon as a songwriter, and he wrote songs for several artists including After 7, Color Me Badd and Toni Braxton. He also produced two remixes of Michael Jackson's number one 1995 hit "You Are Not Alone" which was composed by R. Kelly.

His debut solo album, Bonafide, was released on May 23, 1995, by Tracey Edmonds' label, Yab Yum Records, which was distributed by Epic Records. The album was certified platinum, featuring his duet with Babyface, "Someone To Love." The song reached the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts, and was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals for "Someone to Love." Jon's second album, Cool Relax, was released September 16, 1997, and was certified double platinum.

His double-sided single "They Still Don't Know/Are U Still Down" featuring Tupac Shakur peaked at number two on the R&B chart, and received two Billboard Music Awards nominations: Top Hot R&B Single, and Top Hot R&B Single Sales. It also earned a Soul Train Music Award nomination for Best Male Single.

Jon's third album, Pleasures U Like, was released March 20, 2001, and was certified gold.

Later Career

Following the release of Pleasures U Like, Jon parted ways with Tracey Edmonds and was signed to Sanctuary Records by Beyonce's father, Mathew Knowles. His fourth album, Stronger Everyday in 2004, peaked at number 17 on the R&B chart. In 2006, he released a Christmas album on Arsenal Records, Holiday Wishes: From Me to You, followed by Helpless Romantic in 2008, which reached number 11 on the R&B chart. In 2012, Jon released his seventh album, Comfortable Swagg, on his own label, Vibezelect Records, however it failed to chart.

Personal Life

Jon has been married to his second wife, Danette Jackson, since 2007. They have two daughters: L'Wren, and older Azure. He was previously married to Musiic K. Galloway, who sang background on his debut album, Bonafide.

Notable Quote

"I’m not a cookie cutter type of artist and I don’t need a label telling me I need to sound a certain way, or dance a certain way, or play a certain type of music. I’m coming up with my own type of concepts, so testing them out in the field is something that I love to do. The immediate reaction from the fans is really the say-all and tell-all whether you should put a song out or not." - Jon B. to youknowigotsoul.com in June 2011 on the evolution of his music.

Discography

2012: Comfortable Swagg

2008: Helpless Romantic

2006: Holiday Wishes From Me to You

2004: Stronger Everyday

2001: Pleasures You Like

1997: Cool Relax

1995: Bonafide

Awards and Nominations

1995 - Grammy Award nomination for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals for "Someone to Love"

1998 - Billboard Music Award nomination for Top R&B Artist

1998 - Billboard Music Award nomination for Top R&B Artists - Male

1998 - Billboard Music Award nomination for Top Hot R&B Single for "They Don't Know/Are U Still Down"

1998 - Billboard Music Award nomination for Top Hot R&B Singles Artists

1998 - Billboard Music Award nomination for Top Hot R&B Singles Artists - Male

1998 - Billboard Music Award nomination for Top Hot R&B Singles Sales for "They Don't Know/Are U Still  Down"

1998 - Soul Train Music Award nomination for Best Male Single for "They Don't Know/Are U Still Down"

Edited by Ken Simmons on March 17, 2016