“Once you make a footprint of that kind of commitment to your art, you only raise the standard of your writing and records.” Jonathan Cain
American musician, songwriter and producer Jonathan Cain is best known to rock music fans as the keyboardist of and for his songwriter contribution to the group Journey, which has sold 60 million albums for over two decades of music played on the radio. With the band, he has enjoyed a Grammy nomination for the song “When You Love A Woman” (1997), which he co-wrote with Steve Perry and Neal Schon, and won two of the most influential BMI songwriter awards for the songs “Open Arms” and “Who's Cryin Now,” sharing writing credits with Perry. He is also credited as the writer of the classic ballad “Faithfully.” Recently, Journey's “Greatest Hits” was handed the “Diamond Award” for sales of ten millions. For the group great contribution in the music industry, they was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame in early 2005.
On his own, Cain has released ten solo albums, including “Back To The Innocence” (1995) and “Anthology” (2001), his debut albums as a singer/songwriter, as well as “Piano with a View” (1995), “Body Language” (1997), “For A Lifetime” (1998), “Namaste” (2001) and “Animated Movie Love Songs” (2002), which are all instrumental piano albums of smooth jazz and new age genre. He also has penned songs for other singers and helped produce other artists' albums.
Outside the limelight, Cain has been married twice. He once married singer Tane McClure. He and present wife Elizabeth Yvette Fullerton, whom he married in 1989, have three children.
Childhood and Family:
Jonathan Leonard Friga, who would later be popular as Jonathan Cain, was born on February 26, 1950, in Chicago, Illinois. He took his first instrument, accordion, at age 8, and by the time he was a teenager, he had played the device and piano as well at parties and in clubs. He also plays bass, harmonica and guitar. Jonathan was educated at the renowned East Leyden High School in Franklin Park, Illinois and later enrolled the Chicago Conservatory of Music before relocating to Nashville for a time and then to Los Angeles. He survived from the Our Lady of the Angels school fire in 1958, while many of his classmates died in the incident.
After divorcing from his first wife, singer Tane McClure, Jonathan married Elizabeth Yvette Fullerton on February 17, 1989. The couple have three children together.
Started playing music since childhood, Jonathan Cain made his debut as a recording artist in 1977, at age 27, with the release of “Windy City Breakdown” under Bearsville Records. Two years later, he played keyboard and guitarist for The Babys, but quit after appearing in the band's albums “Union Jacks” and “On the Edge.” His musical career entered a new phase when he joined the rock group Journey in 1980, in which he fulfilled an open place left by keyboardist Gregg Rolie. On his first collaborations, Cain helped Journey reach the top of the chart with the album “Escape,” thanks largely to Cain's compiling and piano playing on such songs as “Don't Stop Believin',” which was named by All Music Guide “one of the best opening keyboard riffs in rock.” He also solely wrote the classic Journey ballad “Faithfully,” about life on the road.
Cain went on to build his popularity with Journey until 1987, when singer Steve Perry departed the band. After the leaving, the rest of the Journey members went on to pursue their own projects. In the meantime, in 1988, Cain reunited with former Babys bandmate John Waite formed a new band called Bad English. Other members included fellow Journey member Neal Schon, Ricky Phillips and Deen Castronovo. The band split up after releasing two albums.
The mid-1990s saw Cain return to his solo project by releasing “Back To The Innocence” in 1995 on Intersound Records. Aside from singing and writing, he also served as producer on the album. He continued to release three piano instrumental albums for Higher Octave records, namely “Piano with a View” (1995), “Body Language” (1997) and “For a Lifetime” (1998). Around this same period, in 1996, Cain reunited with the Journey line up from the album “Escape,” comprising Steve Perry, Neal Schon, Steve Smith and Ross Valory, and recorded the album “Trial by Fire.” Their song, “When You Love A Woman,” received a Grammy nomination in 1997, while the songs “Open Arms” and “Who's Cryin Now,” which Cain co-wrote with Perry, won BMI songwriter awards in the category of Most Performed Song of the Year. Unfortunately, Perry left the group again in 1998. Despite the departure of the lead vocalist, Journey continues to perform until present days with Cain maintaining his duties as keyboardist and songwriter.
In between work in Journey, Cain kept on pursuing his solo projects. He launched his next instrumental albums “Namaste” (2001) and “Animated Movie Love Songs” (2002), as well as “Anthology” (2001). His more recent albums, “Bare Bones” (2004) and “Where I Live” (2006), were released under AAO Records.
Cain is also known for writing songs for other artists like Sammy Hagar, Kenny Rogers, Michael Bolton, the band Heart, Greg Allman, Colin Raye, Lorrie Morgan, Conway Twitty, The Oak Ridge Boys, Maria Carey, Australian singer Jimmy Barnes and Peter Frampton. In addition, he has produced albums by Michael Bolton and Neal Schon, and most recently engineered and co-produced the new Journey EP “Red 13.”
BMI: Most Performed Song of the Year, “Open Arms” and “Who's Cryin Now”