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20 Questions With Moonlight Jones

The Cosmic Soul guitarist talks hot sauce, stomach rolls, grasshopper jokes and more.

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Music has taken Moonlight Jones to many corners of the globe and from coast to coast in the United States. In 2021, the Florida guitarist teamed up with International recording artist and producer Nino Valentino to create a unique genre of music called Cosmic Soul — a blend of Flamenco, R&B and rock. “We want to connect with our fans on a universal level, that’s what Cosmic Soul is all about — connecting with each other using our music as the vehicle,” says Jones, who just released his latest single Hot Night. Today he tries to connect with his audience by taking a stroll through my dumb questions. If that doesn’t make his soul feel less than cosmic, nothing will. Read on:

 


 

Introduce yourself: Name, age (feel free to lie), home base and any other details you’d care to share — height / weight / identifying marks / astrology sign / your choice.
Moonlight Jones, Miami, Sagittarius, scar on left eyebrow from childhood run-in with a school desk.

What is your musical origin story?
Loved music for as long as I can remember. Started playing guitar in high school after seeing a Ben Harper performance on TV (a long time ago) and still don’t know what I’m doing. LOL

What’s your latest project?
Finishing up my first EP, entitled Rise Up with the help of Nino Valentino and an amazing team of Grammy-winning musicians, arrangers, programmers, engineers, and artists.

What truly sets you apart from other artists?
I love most every style of music and I’m comfortable in many different genres (after years and years of practice and dedication).

How will my life improve by listening to your music?
I hope my music will bring a smile to your face, taps to your feet, joy to your heart and will inspire all the listeners to follow their dreams and stay true to themselves.

Tell us about the first song you wrote and / or the first gig you played.
The first complete song I wrote was called Voodoo Woman and was based on a somewhat true story (in my mind at least). It was pure rock ’n’ roll and I hope to release it down the road in an upcoming project. The first gig I played was at a pub in Tampa called Yoeman’s Road, with The Third Coast Players, a group I had co-founded. We had a blast and each of us got paid $20 and free food and beer! Will never forget that show.

What is the best / worst / strangest / most memorable performance you have given?
The best show I’ve played so far was in Vancouver at the Rio Theatre. I was playing shows with the band 100 Monkeys, whose lead singer was Jackson Rathbone, an actor who was filming the Twilight movies in B.C.. The place was packed with screaming fans and Robert Pattinson was backstage and gave me a compliment after my set. Thought that was really cool. After the show I was on cloud nine and thought It couldn’t get much better until I was walking down some steps with my drummer Yaya to greet some fans and I took a nice tumble down the final four steps. Luckily I was able to walk it off and had a laugh with everyone who saw it! I also played a great show at the finish line of the St. Jude’s Rock and Roll Marathon in Nashville. The show was for a great cause, and I was really honored to be part of it. Can’t say I’ve ever had a bad show.

What is the best / worst / strangest / most memorable performance you’ve seen?
Best performance I’ve ever seen was probably Rage Against The Machine at Coachella. Three-way tie for second best performance was Snoop Dogg, Bloc Party and Coldplay.

What living or dead artists would you like to collaborate with?
Would have loved to collaborate with Bradley Nowell of Sublime, Frank Sinatra, Aaliyah, Sam Cooke and Jimi Hendrix. Hope to one day collaborate with Silk Sonic, Dua Lipa, Santana, Shawn Mendes, Mos Def and Talib Kweli, Khruangbin, Camila Cabello, Earth Wind and Fire, Pitbull and Lionel Richie, to name a few…

What artist or style of music do you love that would surprise people?
Anything from the ’40s. All the big band music from Glenn Miller, the Dorsey Brothers, Count Basie, Benny Goodman and Duke Ellington, to Ella Fitzgerald, Vaughn Monroe, Frank Sinatra and Doris Day.

What words do you hope people use when they describe you?
Kind, talented, generous, and funny.

What useful (or useless) skills do you have outside of music?
I can roll my stomach like a wave … I’m a pretty good house and exterior painter.

Who can you do an impression of?
Jeff Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

Tell us a joke.
You probably heard this one, but it uses my first name so I gotta tell it: A grasshopper walks into a bar. The bartender says, ‘Hey, we have a drink named after you.’ The grasshopper says, ‘You have a drink named Jeff?’

What do you collect?
Movies, I have tons of them.

If money was no object, where would you live?
Fiji.

What would you like to be reincarnated as?
An eagle.

Which historical event do you wish you had witnessed?
The Moon landing in 1969.

What’s your idea of perfect happiness?
Doing what you love and sharing it with others.

What are your pet peeves?
People talking loudly during a movie, tipping very little or not at all.

What’s your greatest regret?
I try not to have any regrets. Nothing I can do about the past, so might as well live in the moment.

What are you afraid of?
Bull sharks. They are mean.

What would the title of your autobiography be?
Never Give Up On Your Dreams. Cliche, I know … but true!

Who should play you in the movie of your life?
Tom Hanks with some CGI. He can do everything! LOL

What’s your motto?
To paraphrase the legendary Bruce Lee: “Be Like Water.”

What’s always in your refrigerator?
Hot sauce.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I would add a couple inches to my height — I always wanted to dunk a basketball.

If you had one day to spend as you please without any consequences, what would you do?
I would throw an all-day dance party on the field at Wembley Stadium.

What’s the silliest thing you believed as a child?
If you swallowed your gum it would take seven years to digest.

What was your favourite class in school and why?
Art class. I love to paint, and draw.

What world record would you like to break?
Most football touches in 30 seconds

What was the worst job you ever had?
Working at a porcelain sink factory that had no AC in the middle of a Florida summer.

What’s the best and / or worst advice you were ever given?
Be yourself / Don’t eat that…

Watch the video for Hot Night above, listen to the song below, and meet Moonlight Jones at his website, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok.