Born and raised on the Southside of Chicago, Jonathan McReynolds grew up in the church and began playing drums at his church as a young child. He moved onto playing the organ and singing in the youth choir. But actually, singing was not his forte at the time. “I didn’t like singing back then,” Jonathan admits. “I wasn’t the type of person who was a front man. I was OK with just playing the organ. I wasn’t ready for that criticism of being out in front, and in the spotlight.”
He was briefly a member of the group Mind Over Matter, which released an EP before his solo move. McReynolds recorded a short set of songs and distributed it to family members with no intention of an official release, but it reached John Hannah, a local pastor and DJ who aired some of the material on Chicago’s WGRB. The Very Unofficial EP was eventually released to the public and showcased McReynolds’ intimate fusion of modern R&B, jazz, and contemporary singer/songwriter rock. In May 2012, his single ”I Love You” reached Billboard’s Hot Gospel Songs chart. His proper debut album, Life Music, followed that September.