Christopher Kale Jones
CHRISTOPHER KALE JONES has been singing since he was a kid in church. Before his voice changed, he sang soprano in the prestigious Iolani boys choir in his home island of Hawaii. In high school he sang in select choirs including the selective All-State Honor Choir.
In college, at Northwestern University, Chris began acting professionally, including work with Chicago Shakespeare Theater and Steppenwolf Theatre. Chris’s big break came in 2006, when he was cast in Jersey Boys as Frankie Valli for the first national tour. Other career highlights include Mercury in “Olympus On My Mind” (Bristol Riverside Theatre), for which he received a Barrymore Award Nomination, and Seymour in “Little Shop of Horrors” (Ford’s Theatre, D.C.), opposite his wife, Jenna Coker-Jones. In 2013, Chris and Jenna were blessed to add their little girl, Presley Rose Jones, to their family. When not performing with Under The Streetlamp, he spends as much time as he can with them and their awesome dogs, Fender and Rocket. He is thankful to God for all the blessings in his life. .
I grew up in a relatively conservative family so there was a lot of Christian music and talk radio. But there was a lot of Broadway, and Disney musicals, too – Annie, Camelot, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast …. My mom, though, also liked Motown … Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin, etc. The song I remember the most, the one she’d clean the house to, was the Kiki Dee Band’s, “I’ve Got the Music in Me.” Little did I know my mom would be foreshadowing what I do now!
Favorite Streetlamp Experience:
There have been a bunch! As a group, my favorite experience was when we did a New Year’s Eve show at the Paramount Theatre in Aurora, Illinois. It was fun to be the emcee to usher in the New Year for a couple thousand people. We did the whole count down and then saw everyone kiss. Afterwards, we had a party with the fans. It capped off our tour so it was a lot of fun knowing we got to then go home and celebrate with our own families.
I have a personal favorite, too. I’m a huge fan of stand-up comedy. It is pretty much all I listen to in my car. We do a lot of bantering in the show. Once a person came up to me after the show and said, “Your comedic timing is incredible.” I personally feel that music and comedy go hand in hand, equally providing escape and catharsis for our audience. It is something we really work at. So to have such an unexpected and endearing comment meant a lot to me.
Favorite Song to Perform:
You know it’s funny. After you’ve performed a lot, you get excited about the new stuff. Going into the holiday season, it’s Ave Maria.
During our regular tour, it’s Frankie Valli’s classic “Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You.” Our goal with that song was to give our audience the same feeling they had when they first heard that amazing song, but any artist worth their salt also has to put their own stamp on their material, or you’re just a cover band. With the background vocal parts and the creativity on the ending, I feel we were able to honor the original and lift it just a little bit higher. Now, it is very specifically “ours.”