Jawbone are a new and exciting London-based four-piece band. They self-release their eponymous debut album on Friday 9th November 2018.
Beginning as a collaboration between established solo artists Paddy Milner (keyboards, vocals) and Marcus Bonfanti (guitar, vocals), the band was soon joined by the renowned rhythm section of Rex Horan (bass, vocals) and Evan Jenkins (drums, percussion), Jawbone has quickly become a band with a unique sound focused on delivering strong songs.
Each member of Jawbone is a respected musician in the industry. They have played with everyone from Tom Jones, Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, Ten Years After, Van Morrison Robert Plant, Dave Gilmour, Seth Lakeman, Cliff Richard, Ginger Baker, Ronnie Wood, Shuggie Otis, Laura Marling, James Hunter, Phil Manzanera, Garth Hudson, Jimmy Carl Black and many more.
In January 2018, Jawbone were chosen to back Eric Clapton, Van Morrison & Tom Jones at Paul Jones’ legendary charity show at G-Live in Guildford, gaining rave reviews from the artists involved and the sell-out audience alike.
Having all met each other in and around the thriving London music scene, Bonfanti and Milner first crossed paths in a North London house share in 2008 forming a close musical bond through a shared love of Blues and Roots music. Rex and Evan shared a similar experience halfway across the world in Perth, Australia before moving to the UK to pursue new musical endeavors.
Jawbone pride themselves in their lack of compromise, from the writing and recording processes, through to album artwork. The initial writing sessions between Bonfanti and Milner took place at Paddy’s house in North London where the two forged the songs that would eventually make up this debut album.
Named after a song taken from The Band’s self-titled 1969 second album, Jawbone tracked all the songs live as a four piece with minimal overdubs at London’s State of The Ark Studio using the famous EMI desk originally installed in the Pathé Marconi studios in Paris. Final touches were added at Marcus’ brothers North London studio where his collection of vintage synthesisers and microphones helped the band finalise their ideas.
The record was mixed in New Zealand by Nick Portman and mastered in Devon by Star Delta with a final bounce to tape to add that warmth that is missing from so many records today. The album was additionally mastered for vinyl to ensure both the digital and analog versions sounded as good as possible.
The distinctive voices of Paddy Milner and Marcus Bonfanti compliment and contrast throughout the songs as they share lead vocal duties on the album. Rex Horan’s searing falsetto vocals create the three-part harmony that has become a hallmark of the Jawbone sound.
Taking influences from Little Feat, The Band, The Rolling Stones and Crosby, Stills Nash & Young but also mixing it with the eclectic musical backgrounds that each member brings, allows Jawbone to create a very fresh take on rock’n’roll.
“Jawbone” Album Tracklisting
1. Leave No Traces (4:30)
2. Get What You Deserve (4:27)
3. When Your Gun Is Loaded (3:32)
4. Family Man (4:40)
5. Bet On Yesterday (5:12)
6. Rolling On The Underground (3:43)
7. Big Old Smoke (3:08)
8. Sit Round The Table (4:47)
9. Two Billion Heartbeats (4:54)
10. The Years Used To Mean So Much (4:27)
1. Leave No Traces
This was the first song we wrote together. Paddy and I had always talked about writing together and the first few sessions were quite de-moralising as we couldn’t get a creative rhythm happening. After a few sessions of perseverance though we wrote this quickly and easily and it changed everything. The song is essentially about being lost, that feeling of being between two places, neither of which you belong in and wondering what your purpose is. Marcus
2. Get What You Deserve
In this song we wanted to explore the two-part harmony vocal side of things, to try and write a song where the vocal harmony is so tight and constant that you maybe don’t even notice it’s happening. The song is a bit of a swipe at a musician we have all worked with at some point over the years. To be honest, most people probably know someone like this. A person who feels that the world owes them more than they are getting and its everyone’s fault but their own that they aren’t getting it. Sometimes it’s good to just get it all out and put it in a song. I remember that day being quite cathartic. Marcus
3. When Your Gun Is Loaded
I really enjoyed writing this song with Paddy. We had the idea for this song a long time before we decided to start Jawbone, so the writing of it didn't take that long. It’s nice when you collaborate with songwriters. Sometimes you clash on ideas and new ones come out of that, while at other times you are on the same page from the minute you settle on the idea or theme. This song was one of those moments. The song is a play on words for the phrase “shooting yourself in the foot,” and lyrically focuses on those days when sometimes you just can’t say the right thing. Marcus
4. Family Man
This is a song which can be taken with a double meaning. Initially inspired by imagining what it might be like to be a reluctant member of the Italian Mafia, looking for a way out of the family business. It could also be an expression of fear of the restrictions and compromises of regular family life. I brought the song to Marcus and he worked his magic tidying it up. As with every song on the album, the recording sums up the ease with which the band arrives at an arrangement, everyone contributing great ideas that take the arrangement in directions that no individual would have done. Paddy
5. Bet On Yesterday
I distinctly remember the idea for this song arriving whilst walking down Walthamstow High Street. An elderly local chap, a stalwart of the market and clearly with some sort of troubled existence, was coming the other way and it made me wonder what had happened in his life to make him that way. Perhaps he took life gambles that didn’t pay off, hence the idea for the title and the song. This song pretty much wrote itself, and very quickly. Where will today’s decisions take us? The ‘Western’ feel to the arrangement is pure Jawbone collaboration! Paddy
6. Rolling On The Underground
This song was the earliest writing collaboration with Marcus. It was born out of a series of weekly videos I would produce over the course of a year. I asked Marcus if he would feature one week, writing and recording a song. We came up with the idea to write a pun-heavy song using as many London tube station names as possible. We were pretty much crumpled over with laughter for most of that session and came up with a fun song. When we began writing what was to become the ‘Jawbone’ album, we remembered the song, thought the idea was too good to ignore and had a re-write to get it on the album. Just love the groove that Evan brought to this song! Paddy
7. Big Old Smoke
This is a song about living in London. Jawbone is quite a unique band in that I was born and raised in London, Paddy came to the city to study and then stayed. Evan and Rex came all the way from New Zealand and Australia to settle here so there is obviously a real magnetism about London. I always say London is the best city in the world to be a musician, but I’m also fully aware of the fact that London has a lot of laughable traits that seem so ridiculous sometimes when compared with other places. We decided to write about this crazy magnetic force that London has because no matter how much we moan about it or love to leave it from time to time we are drawn back to it. This was one of the earliest ideas Paddy and I started to get into shape and probably the last one we finished. We kept coming back to it and changing things until we knew we had it right. Marcus
8. Sit Round The Table
Marcus and I used to live in a shared house in North London. We had a huge lounge/dining room on the ground floor, but the kitchen table was always the central focus of the house. It was witness to all kinds of scenes, people, conversations, all sorts of crazy things and that’s all I’m prepared to say about it This song is a tribute to its constant and unassuming role in many people’s lives. It was a wonderfully nostalgic song to write with Marcus and brings back many memories when we perform it. Paddy
9. Two Billion Heartbeats
I had this concept for a song for a long time but couldn't work out how best to undertake it. The idea was that maybe we all have the same finite number of heartbeats in our life and it’s up to us to use them wisely and almost gamble them like chips on certain decisions or people. It’s a love song really, hoping that once you’ve made all your relationship mistakes and you finally meet the right person, you have enough heartbeats to give them. Also, being a musician, heartbeats is sometimes all you have to give to someone ‘cos money sure does come and go in this life! It wasn't until Paddy and I sat down at his piano when the song came to life. He got the concept instantly and the ideas just started flowing. When we took it to Rex and Evan the same thing happened. Everyone just got the concept and the song came together effortlessly. Marcus
10. The Years Used To Mean So Much
This is a purely nostalgic song written about my upbringing in rural Dorset, Southwest England. It’s a beautiful part of the world and my childhood there seems a long way from my life in the manic energy of London. I connect the area with my late mother. This is a very personal song for me, but I hope other people can relate to their own childhoods through it. Paddy
The Stables, Milton Keynes
Thursday 6th September 2018
The Flowerpot, Derby
Friday 7th September 2018
Millport Country Music Festival, Scotland
Sunday 9th September 2018
O2 Academy 2 Islington, London
Wednesday 12th September 2018
Arlington Arts, Newbury
Thursday 13th September 2018
Chichester Inn, Chichester
Saturday 15th September 2018
10/10/2018 – Divadlo, Kolín, Czech Republic
11/10/2018 – Varnsdorf, Czech Republic
13/10/2018 – Jazzclub, Teplice, Czech Republic
15/10/2018 – Knihovna, Most, Czech Republic
16/10/2018 – Pivarium, Zatec, Czech Republic
17/10/2018 – Stará pekárna, Brno, Czech Republic
18/10/2018 – Prerov, Czech Republic
19/10/2018 – Jih, Ostrava, Czech Republic
20/10/2018 – Bounty, Olomouc, Czech Republic
22/10/2018 – Valasske Meririci, Czech Republic
23/10/2018 – Vyskov, Czech Republic
24/10/2018 – Boskovice, Czech Republic
02/11/2018 - Sala X, Seville, Spain
03/11/2018 - Teatro, Don Benito, Spain
04/11/2018 - Zagal, Aldeamayor, Spain
06/11/2018 - Sala Berlin, Madrid, Spain
07/11/2018 - La Iguana, Vigo, Spain
08/11/2018 - Almacen Little Bobby, Santander, Spain
09/11/2018 - Udazkenablues, Buried, Spain
10/11/2018 - Lleida, Spain
11/11/2018 - Eibar, Spain