Born and raised on the west side of Cleveland, Jack still has the first 45 that he begged his parents for at the age of 3 (“Great Balls of Fire” by Jerry Lee Lewis). Since then, he has continued to collect and listen to a wide range of music. Jack’s musical heroes are too numerous to mention, but his “desert island favorite” is Thelonious Monk.
Jack went to John Carroll University, where Mark Ronan encouraged him to stop listening so much, and to start making music by singing and playing guitar. That began a strong friendship that has only grown over the years. For the last five years, Jack and Mark have been playing Monday nights at The Root Cafe (p.k.a. Phoenix Coffeehouse) in Lakewood. B. Ryan B., Flip and Gib have made appearances as well for informal Flip Side sessions.
In June, 2006, Jack retired from teaching special education in the Cleveland Municipal Schools. After “subbing” for the Flip Side for a few gigs, Jack was invited to join the group as a full-time member. With support and encouragement from his wife Donna and his three daughters, he did. Jack loves playing with the Flip Side because of “the high level of original songwriting, cover performances, harmony singing, and musicianship, but mostly because we have fun!”