Biography - Jon R. Paget
Jon Paget gave up guitar at the age of ten after not being able
to stand playing "Moma's Little Baby Loves Shortnin' Bread" for
hour long periods of time (Wrong guitar teacher!) But some
basic "hum & strum" skills and the confidence in his ability to
learn the instrument, coupled with the inspiration of artists
such as Jimi Hentrix, Michael Schenker, Ritchie Blackmore, Frank
Marino, and Alvin Lee led to the purchase of a $30 electric guitar
called an "Orpheus" at a local pawn shop.
Jon (R) with "Damen Smash"
Jon began playing improvisational leads over songs from his
favorite albums, such as Nazareth's "Please Don't Judas Me,"
or Rush's "Working Man," which had long open formats which
Jon could practice lead work over.
Jon was accepted at Fullerton College, which at that time was winning
nationwide collegiate jazz contests. Jon studied under a wonderful,
funny little man, with thick bottle rimmed glasses, named Gunnar Eisel,
who you will see recognized in the credits for all of Jon's recordings
hence. Jon invites you to visit Gunnar's website at
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Under his tutaleage, Jon corrected everything he had learned wrong
during his self-instructed teen phase, without loosing the inherent
style which had become his own. Transposing everything he was taught
in basic major theory to other modes which suited his rock and heavy
metal roots, he began truly finessing his skills.
Jon took over a local Orange County band, renaming it "Black and White"
and began playing Orange County venues such as the Woodstock, Radio
City, and Jezebel's. Covering songs with complex solos such as Deep
Purple's "Highway Star", as well as performing intricate original
material, Jon soon became a local favorite, headlining the Orange
County circuit. Black and White, unfortunately, suffered from the
lack of a great singer, and therefore never went anywhere.
At that point, Jon hooked up with the former vocalist of Ruthless,
Sami DeJohn, and bass extragavant Ted May, who studied with
RacerX bassist Jon Alderete. With the formation of "Damen Smash",
Jon got his first taste of Hollywood venues such as the Roxy, where
he enjoyed performing in front of large devoted heavy metal crowds.
At that time, the progressive heavy metal group Steel Prophet had
an opening for a second guitarist. Their management group was headed
by Benjamin Molave, an A&R representative for Capital Records, and a
long time friend of Jon's. Jon's style, technical ability, and love
for progressive metal won him the spot as 2nd guitarist for the band.
(L-R) Bob Hargrove, Elizabeth Sabine, and Jon Paget (backstage at the
Jon wrote and layered secondary guitar compositions over Steel Prophet songs
which can be heard on the "Inner Ascendance" EP (later re-released
as "Genesis"), but left the band during negotiations with Foundations
2000 records due to a dispute.
Out of this dark period came Jon's personal demo tape "Insania".
It showed Jon's progressing personal style in a string of intricate
compositions Jon stereotypes as "Technical Acid-Mosh". Ping-ponged
across an 8 track too many times, these complex works were produced
as horribly as most Steel Prophet recordings. It was, though,
Jon's most vicious and psycho metalwork to date.
Soon after, Jon got back together with former Damen Smash bassist
Ted May to form a RacerX style band which went through drummers
like Spinal Tap, until finding Drummer Cleigh Berman. After
Ted's decision to move back to St. Louis, Jon approached Cleigh
about setting up a band more aimed at his "Insania" material,
and Sanctus Sabbata was born.
Jon's contacts led him to vocal instructor extraordinaire and
"Grandmother of Rock & Roll" Elizabeth Sabine, who has coached
such notable names as Dave Mustaine and Axl Rose. Elizabeth
recommended one of her interns Bob Hargrove for frontman / vocalist.
Not being able to find a bassist who could keep up, Jon contacted
former Black & White's bassist Joe Gabris, who by that time was
playing with Armed Forces. Joe joined Sanctus Sabbata as a second
project, allowing Sanctus Sabbata to play a string of shows,
including multiple Whiskey shows in Hollywood.
Sanctus Sabbata live at the Whiskey
Differences in style led to a change in vocalists to Bruce Hall,
formerly of Grinchfist and Agent Steel. Bruce's then more
commercial direction led to the formation of "Growing Martians",
which ironically, Bruce did not front.
Growing Martians live at the Blue Saloon
Vocalist Matt Pollert and bassist Billy Ray were hired for the
more commercial "Growing Martians", but Jon once again felt a
void in his ability to showcase his real talent.
And thus, the "Audioize" project was born. Not a set band, this
"project" allowed Jon to showcase different artists, creating his
own pieces which showcase his neoclassical and exotic scale work,
as well as doing silly parodies of old hits such as "Dirty Water".
This freedom of expression is the best yet recorded sessions of
Jon's unique sound and style. Both full length Audioize CDs are
available now at through the links at this site,
and Jon still ocassionally performs a set of Audioze songs live.
More recently, Jon finally took an interest in punk rock because it seemed the most
socially and politically rebellious music that has lasted the test of time.
Jon co-founded a punk band called No Victor, but needed more freedom
and later co-founded No Vanquished.
No Vanquished didn't really
end up being a "punk" band, but some influences are pretty obvious.
the band features Jeremy Saje on vocals and Jerry Olsen on drums.
More recordings and shows are in process, so stay tuned!
It should also be mentioned that Jon has become part of the "Steel
Prophet Inner Ascendance Lineup Reunion" in 2013. The band played the
Keep It True XVI Music Festival in Germany. Songs from the performance
can be seen at Youtube, and there should be more news from Steel
Prophet soon. If you're a Facebook geek, you should go put a "like"
on the Steel Prophet Band page and keep up with current news.
There will soon be 2 songs written and recorded by the legendary
jazz bassist Bunny Brunel that will feature Jon's guitar work. One
is completed, one is still in process.
Jon Paget's Homepage
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