In his young adult life, JD experienced tragedy, trauma and turmoil. He opens up that private side of his life to share his story. His songwriting has been described as; Genuine and easy to identify with. He writes with a raw emotion and an unflinching truth. A listener has no doubt that the subject is real and there's an absolute sincerity that comes out in his delivery.
Born and raised in Missouri, he is the youngest of 3 boys. Growing up in a middle class family, his Dad was in the USAF and a Vietnam Vet who worked for TWA, then American Airlines. His Mom was a Nurse and cared for the elderly. Like any American kid he enjoyed the outdoors, hunting, fishing, camping and riding dirt bikes on the trails with his Dad and brothers. JD's Grandfather was good friends with Ernest Tubb, Porter Wagoner, and Red Foley. JD's Uncle was a Singer/Songwriter and Recording Artist. His Uncle performed around the Ozark's and was a regular on the Ozark Jubilee which led to an appearance on the Porter Wagoner show. With the help of Porter and Ernest Tubb he found his own spot in Country Music. His Uncle was signed and had a top 20 hit on country radio. He opened up for legendary artist such as Don Williams, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard.
JD started writing in High School and with his Uncle he wrote his first song. He started dreaming of becoming a professional songwriter, making a living with music and one day getting to perform on The Grand Ole Opry. After graduating High School he completed 2yrs of Aeronautical School for Aviation. In his young adult life JD dealt with a lot of trials. Seeing tragedy at a young age; A weekend before 4th of July, JD and his childhood best friend were traveling down a gravel road in Warsaw, MO near his family's lake cabin, when his best friend was shot and killed. JD heard a couple loud bangs and thought it was fireworks. The truck accelerated rapidly, started to veer off the road. JD yelled at his friend to turn the truck and no response, he reached over and grabbed the wheel before going off a ravine. He tried to get the truck under control but they hit a tree head on at 60 mph. The truck came to a rest stretched across the road. Through all the broken glass and twisted metal, sparks flying and the smell of gas, injured and bleeding, he tried to open the door, but it was stuck, he remembered praying and the door opened just enough for him to squeeze out. He stumbled his way around to the drivers side, opened the door, his friend was unconscious. In fear it was going to catch fire, he pulled him out from behind the wheel of the mangled truck, drug him away and laid him on the ground. After attempting CPR, it was too late, his best friend died in his arms. He had to relive that horrific night for several days when he was called to testify against the man who committed this crime. The man was convicted of 2nd degree murder and was sent to prison.
Several years later, after dating a woman a few years he was married. As they started to settle into their new lives together they got some devastating news. She was diagnosed with a very rare form of cancer. She fought hard but passed away 7 months later while he was at her bedside with his parents. Dealing with the loss of her, a short 10 months later he had to face the untimely death of his oldest brother. Being brought up in a Christian home, he says he tried to hold onto his faith, but he was hurt and angry and felt buried. He admits he ended up battling some dark times wondering why he had seen so much tragedy and trauma and he felt buried. After a few years he realized God had him planted in order to grow. While people always feel sorry for what he's face. He believes that each trial was just a stepping stone to prepare him for the next battle. His faith grew stronger, he and his parents grew closer and they became 2 of his best friends. Music and songwriting and practicing (Aikido/Jujitsu) was his release.
JD had a lot of influences in music, from Singer/Songwriters to other Recording Artist, those included George Strait, Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Garth Brooks, Chris LeDoux, Michael W. Smith, Steven Curtis Chapman, Songwriters Tim Nichols, Dean Dillon and the legendary late Kim Williams.
JD got his start working behind the scenes as security at concerts. He completed formal training and became certified in Celebrity, Executive and Dignitary Protection. He was also certified in hand to hand combat. For several years he worked as a Professional Handler for some major recording artist. When a couple of them found out he was also a songwriter they invited him to Nashville. Once he was introduced to the business, being in the recording studio and having his creation come to life, he was hooked. In 2005 he thought the time had come to make the move but the decision was to split his time between Nashville and Missouri. He done that for 3 years, working to become a better songwriter and with each stay it became harder to leave. He knew where he needed to be and his heart and soul was in music. In July of 2008 he packed up everything and moved to Nashville to follow his dreams. He has had the opportunity to write with some hit songwriters, even had a couple holds on his songs by some major artists. JD worked as a truck driver at FedEx Ground pulling doubles up and down the interstate, with his Boxer "Tripp" by his side.
In Feb. 2016, JD was involved in a serious accident. The state of IL pushed snow and ice off an over pass going through the windshield of his semi truck while he pulling doubles for FedEx. He suffered a major injury to his neck. In April of 2016 he had surgery to repair it, which left him on 4 months of vocal rest with the possibility that he would never sing again. Thankfully his first EP was already recorded. With a many prayers his voice made a full recovery. The EP release was delayed until late 2016, then released in 2018. It was produced by Kent Wells, who is a 2x Grammy Nominated Producer. Wells has worked with Reba, Brooks and Dunn and currently produces Dolly Parton. He is also her band leader and lead guitar player. JD co-wrote 5 of the 6 songs on the EP including the title track which is recorded in memory of his late wife.
JD says, "I feel very blessed even for all I've been through. Especially the loving support of my family who understand what it takes and the sacrifices I have to make. He switched to Inspirational/Country. "For me, it's not about money or fame but reaching and touching people. If my story or one of my songs can help others, then it's all worth it. My ultimate goal is to Perform on The Grand Ole Opry. That's been a dream since I was a kid.
JD bought his first house in Jan, 2017 in Hendersonville, TN. He had to undergo a 2nd neck surgery in September 2017 and after surgery, there was complications and he almost died from a blood clot. He spent a couple days in ICU and it would leave him with a permanent disability. He was forced to retire early in 2018.
JD had plans to finish his first Inspirational/Country Album but that was put on hold. In February of 2018 he had to deal with the sudden loss of his Dad. While that was extremely difficult. For him life is pretty great. He is working on a new album and it will have 8 songs total. Along with Too Far From Heaven from the first EP and "My Last Prayer" which will be the title track. He lives with his 2 dogs, Tripp and Zippy and since his house is close to the lake, he enjoys fishing and being on the water with friends. In October of 2018 he became an FAA Certified Drone Pilot to integrate with his professional photography. He has captured some amazing photographs. There is hopes to get the current song to Radio Stations in Summer of 2020 and work on some tour dates in the Southeast, The UK and possibly Japan. Although due to Covid-19, dates are cancelled till further notice. So now it's songwriting and recording new music.