Jon McCrea

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Award presented 2008

John R Campbell Collection

Jon McCrea a.k.a. Jonathan J

Jon McCrea - Singer, MC Singer was born in Christchurch on October 23rd, 1952.  He started singing in local dance halls and pubs in the 60's, at the ripe old age of 16.  Due to the licensing laws of the day, one needed to be 21 years of age to enter, work or perform on licensed premises.  Many a night, Jon would leave the stage mid song, to go and hide out in the cellar or the bushes until the "boys in blue" moved on.  A founding member of Jonathan J and The Fifth Edition in the late 60's (resident at the Bush Inn Courts circa 1968), Jon was fortunate to work with many local band members including Bob Heinz, Kevin Frewer, Kevin Bayley, Rob Carpenter, Kevin Toneycliffe, Greg Mooney, Murray Watt and Bruno Berrins, to name but a few.  Over the course of his career he supported a number of international artists including, The Hollies, Blood, Sweat and Tears, and Suzie Quatro.


Jonathan J + The Fifth Edition

Jonathan J

Jonathan J + The Fifth Edition


Jonathan J as a solo act

Jonathan J with Dianne


After an apprenticeship in cabaret and lounge music Jon joined Gretel and hit the hard rock scene.  Standing room only was the order of the day at the Marine Hotel in Sumner every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, seeing the publican at the time unable to understand the crowds outside in the car park during the breaks and where the smoke and distinctive aroma were coming from.  That was the early 70's and times were definitely - a changin' ....  After 18 months touring the tip to the base of New Zealand with Gratis Kenetic Jon moved to Sydney, Australia in 1977.  He met up with mates from Loxene Golden Disc award band Creation and formed a nine piece band Skintight.  With a big brass section and funk sound, the band went on to wow crowds throughout Australia.  In 1980, Jon moved away from music, got married to Carole and reared two sons, Jay and Hayden.


Jon performing at ROCKONZ 2008

Performing at ROCKONZ 2009 with The Detours

Jon performing at ROCKONZ 2008

Performing at ROCKONZ 2009 with The Detours


After being a main player in the fabric care industry for 20 years, he sold his business and was drawn back to his passion to perform.  Seeing a void in the Sydney market for professional Masters of Ceremonies, Jon dived head first back into this field, and under the guise of MC Singer, Jon was now back in the music business.  His music styles range from Frank Sinatra/Michael Bublé to Rock ’n Roll and dance.  He returned to Christchurch in 2002, and has undertaken the role of MC at the ROCKONZ Concerts and Jams.


Jon McCrea circa 2002

Vocalising at his 50th Oct 2002

Jon as MC for ROCKONZ 2007

Jon with Tap Heperi

Jon McCrea publicity shot