driven, and intense are all words that have been used to describe the
music and personality of Jonathan Tristram. Who else would plan a six
month journey to hike the entire 2,100 mile stretch of the Appalachian
Mountains, in order to gain a true inward look at one’s self? Who else
would paddle the entire length of the Grand Canyon for the sole purpose
of becoming more in tune with its dramatic geological landscape? It is
precisely these types of lifetime endeavors that have given Jonathan a
rich palate from which to create his musical compositions and songs.
Born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, Jonathan began
studying piano at the age of eight. At the age of seventeen, he picked
up a guitar that had been lying untouched for years in the family attic.
Preferring the more intimate relationship with the strings, he found
that the guitar quickly became his most important musical passion. Now
an accomplished fingerstyle guitarist, Jonathan blends many styles of
music into his songwriting craft, ranging from old school fingerstyle,
to blues, to rock, to country, to urban contemporary folk.
His love of teaching (an elementary school science teacher) and his
constant desire to learn more about the science of how things work, led
him into the world of studio engineering and producing. In the winter of
2000, Jonathan graduated with top honors at the Manhattan Recording
Workshop (JSM Studios 6th Ave. NYC) studying with such notable engineers
as Jeffrey Dovner and Jimmy Douglas. The music contained on this website
has all been engineered and produced by Jonathan himself.
His first recording, The Guitar Speaks is a collection of twelve
guitar instrumentals. Several of these compositions were profoundly
influenced by some of Jonathan's travel experiences. For example, "Theme
for a Lazy Day" the opening track, was written while sitting on a park
bench on a quiet Sunday morning in New Orleans. This track is followed
by "Hadrian's Wall" a piece of music that hearkens back to memories of a
childhood journey that explored the northern reaches of Great Britain.
The Guitar Speaks is slated to be remastered and re-released sometime in
the coming year.
His most recent recording, entitled "This Way!" takes a dramatic
departure from the world of acoustic finger style guitar. Over the past
several years, Jonathan has been writing new material that features the
classic sound of the Hammond Organ with his group The Hub Kings.