While the journey to the top continues on, it certainly appears that the roughest roads of Iced Earth's journey are behind them. The dead end streets are now recognized for what they are and the open highway lies ahead for Iced Earth. The vehicle's tank remains full of Jon's unique blend of high-octane passion and desire. Lessons learned over the past 20 years ("getting ripped off," and "getting had," not to mention "getting old," and "getting grey") have provided Jon with the ability to navigate through the fog and illusions of the music industry. But it wasn't always that way.
Today’s Iced Earth highway started in the early 1970s on nothing more than an average American side street in northeast Indiana. It was there, in a humble blue-collar town, where Jon was first exposed to music from legendary bands such as Kiss, Black Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult, and Alice Cooper. By the age of four, Jon had become a dedicated fan to the sounds of hard rock and heavy metal. Jon’s exposure to the world of hard and heavy music came from his older sister. The two spent many hours in their youth escaping some of the harsh realities around them by listening to the bands that would be responsible in shaping what would become Iced Earth. In 1979, a life-changing event took place when Jon’s father took him to see Kiss at the age of 11. The sonic experience combined with a bombastic stage show only Kiss could deliver struck a lifelong “curse” upon Jon that night – an unrelenting and uncompromising desire to constantly push his talents to the limits and to write songs worthy of his name.