Calvin “Joonie” Gary, Jr., better known by his stage name Joonie is an American singer, songwriter, arranger and musician, specializing in Soul, R&B and Popular music. Born December 11, 1981 in Jacksonville, North Carolina into a musical family, whose mother was a singer and father a keyboardist, Joonie's talent is genetic and his passion is influenced by his environment, where gospel and soul music were always a part of his life.
At the age of 12, Joonie and his family relocated to Seattle, Washington, there he found his own musical path, and began teaching himself how to play the piano, guitar and other instruments. Joonie recalls how he’d lock himself in his room for days on end, focused on his craft and fueled by his desire to master these instruments to create music and write lyrics to express what he was feeling.
Like many great Soul and R&B artists, Joonie began his vocal career singing and playing in the church. A recognizable talent even in his teens, he also began singing, playing and performing in community choirs, school assemblies and later went on to win numerous talent competitions.
Although Joonie is a brilliant vocalist, and talented musician, initially, he never aspired to be a singer, his focus was on songwriting. He’d write songs, but couldn't find anyone to sing them the way he envisioned them being heard, so he was forced to sing his own demos. A friend heard his demo CD, and thought it was worth passing along to rapper and producer Warren G, who also agreed, as he was instrumental in helping Joonie get his first label deal at the age of 21.
Unable to compromise the integrity of his musicianship and unwilling to compromise his unique artistic style to become a pre-packaged “instant star”, Joonie took an introspective hiatus from the music industry, where at one point; he almost lost his desire to create.
For a while, Joonie stayed behind the scenes, writing, arranging, producing or playing instrumentals for other artists including, Ruben Stoddard, Nappy Roots and unreleased collaborations with Angie Stone and Mos Def, but his talent would once again surface to the forefront. After touring and performing with Elliott Yamin, the audience reactions to Joonie's performances night after night were overwhelming and undeniable that people wanted to hear more from him.
Acoustic Love, Joonie's debut album, set for release April 27, 2010 is real music, expressing his feelings about love and relationships, explored from a very rare point of view in current popular music; one where romance exists, women, are valued and appreciated, a story is told and pure emotions are expressed set to perfect arrangements with infectious rhythms.
As Joonie says, each of his songs is like his child. he likes to take time with each one, nurture it and guide it to maturity until it is ready to be shared. His goal with every song is to create music that actually touches your soul, puts a smile on your face and makes you feel good and your head bob as you listen and sing along.
Genres: Soul, R&B, Contemporary Soul, Contemporary R&B, Pop