Texas Chapter Board Spotlight | Danny Jones
What do you do in the music industry?
I am a producer, engineer, musician, singer, songwriter and educator
What does being a member of the Recording Academy mean to you?
It means that I can contribute and support the only organization that actually represents me and my industry’s best interests. It allows me the opportunity to give back to that industry, and be a part of a consciousness that conveys the message, ”we stand and support our creative community”.
Tell us about the musical influences and inspirations that helped shape your career.
Music has always been a driving force in my life. I grew up playing drums/percussion in school bands and orchestras. I listened to the radio, bought records (Beatles, Stones, Steely Dan, Eagles, Chicago, Buddy Rich), studied records, went to concerts, and tried to emulate it all! Studied music in college. In addition to my “classical” training I played in a jazz big band, a hard rock trio and a 7 piece “soul” horn band . I was drawn to the music and the recording industry of Memphis. There I landed drumming gigs with Bobby Vee, Bo Diddley, the Drifters and local Memphis artists. When I wasn’t traveling I hung out at any and every studio that would let me in the door! I played, I sang, I asked lots of questions, I made mistakes, and I learned. Two major observations - dedication and serious work ethic! Eventually, I shifted my focus to engineering and producing. One of my productions ended up on the desks of Marshall Sehorn and Allen Toussaint in New Orleans. I was offered a staff position and jumped at it! Working with artists like the Meters and the Neville Brothers opened up a whole new world to me musically. But the years I spent working with the master, Allen Toussaint….Wow! No question in my mind Allen has had the greatest influence on me professionally. I have been blessed to work with some incredible talent (Patti LaBelle, Etta James, SRV, Mavis Staples, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Yellowjackets, and Ramsey Lewis to name a few). I still enjoy this creative journey. New songs, new productions, new emotional connections…..exciting!
If you weren’t working in the music industry, what would you be doing?
Honestly, I really don’t know. I made the decision to be a music professional at age 19 and never looked back! I have taught throughout my career. But what have I taught? Drums/percussion, song writing and recording studio production. My first statement still stands.
What projects are you currently working on?
I recently mixed the Jazz Stage at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. In the studio now mixing concert recordings of Eric Marienthal, JD Warren and the Rudiment, and the Buddy Rich Big Band for the Katy Jazz Festival. And, just started working with indie artist, K Phillips for his next release.