Once upon a time, Jonathan Davis was just an odd young man dealing with abusive relatives as well as vicious bullying from his peers. His coping mechanism of choice was music and he soon dived into it with all his heart. These days, Davis has made a name as one of the most popular rock stars in the world. He is the lead vocalist and frontman of the famous nu-metal band – Korn. Under his watch, the band has dropped multiple platinum-certified albums and has helped to popularize the nu-metal genre.
Away from the glittering world of show biz, the Californian native is a family man with two marriages and one divorce behind him. The nu-metal genre expert is also a father with three children from both marriages. Since his emergence on the rock music scene, interest in his personal and professional has been quite high and has not doused a bit over the years.
Jonathan was Part of the Metal Band, Sex Art Before Joining Korn
Jonathan Davis commenced his music career from 1987 as a DJ back in high school under his alter-ego JDevil. Most of his gigs than were DJing for his high school parties and his favorite genres in music were Miami bass, New York Freestyle, Goth, and several others. After high school, he got a regular job whilst still pursuing his music on the side.
The emerging rock star later started living in a garage belonging to Jeff Creath who works as a producer and also owns Underground Chicken Sounds recording studio. Davis got his first breakthrough when he joined the metal band, Sex Art, as their frontman. Even though the group did not record much success, it showcased his talent and he soon attracted offers from several aspiring musicals. One of them was the metal band, L.A.P.D., which recruited Davis into its folds. The band (originally comprising of three members) also recruited Brian Welch and together, they formed Korn in 1993. The band members started performing and in 1993, while staging a performance at Huntington Beach they got noticed and their story changed for the better.
His First Career Success was Recorded with Korn
Korn launched its debut self-titled album one year later in 1994. The album which was released under Immortal/Epic Records was quite successful, peaking at seventy-two on the Billboard 200. Its theme of child abuse and drugs is something close to Jonathan Davis’ heart.
Encouraged by that early success, Korn started dropping other albums, and between 1996 to 1999 they became a force to reckon with in the music industry. Notable among their albums during that period are 1996 Life is Peachy which went double platinum in the United States. Their album Follow the Leader that hit the music stand in 1998 peaked at #1 position on the Billboard 200, and Issues followed in 1999; Issues was promoted by the tour Sick and Twisted.
Thanks to their Previous Records, Korn was Encouraged to Drop More Successful Album
In 2002, Korn dropped their fifth studio album Untouchables that became an instant hit with the metal fans and was certified platinum. In addition to raking in sales of five million copies on a global scale, the album’s single Here to Stay became a Grammy award-winning track.
Take a Look in the Mirror that was released in 2003 received mixed critical reviews, however, it was later ranked at # 284 on The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time by Rock Hard magazine. Jonathan Davis’ band inked a deal with Virgin Records in 2005 to release the album See You on the Other Side which went platinum, though the band’s long-standing guitarist was not part of it. Korn enlisted the help of The Matrix to achieve more mainstream popularity.
Korn Played a Gimmick with Their 2007 Album Which Worked in Their Favor
When they dropped their 2007 album, Davis and his nu-metal band intentionally did not give it any name; they left it open for fans and the general public to call it any name of their choice. Surprisingly, the gimmick worked in their favor and the album ended up being certified gold. Korn’s most recent albums include 2010 Korn III: Remember Who You Are, The Path of Totality which dropped in 2011, and 2013 The Paradigm Shift that earned positive critical reviews.
The band’s latest release was entitled The Nothing which they started releasing a series of videos about its making on YouTube, simply entitled Korn Docuseries 2019. When it finally dropped in September, the album received a four-star NME review. It was called “urgent and important” by Dannii Leivers in her review.
Since their mainstream success, Korn has gone on to release no less than 13 albums; two of these albums have been certified double platinum, one – triple platinum, and one – five times platinum. The group has also sold over 35 million records worldwide and has nabbed numerous awards.
Jonathan Davis Commenced Work on a Solo Album Since 2007
It was in 2007 that the nu-metal expert started working on his debut solo album and formed the group Jonathan Davis and the SFA (Simply Fucking Amazings). His solo band members include artists like Chris Nix who manned the guitar, Brian Allen was in charge of upright bass, and Sven Martin was on the keyboard with Ray Luzier controlling the drums. We are not forgetting Emilio “Zef” China who juggled the violin, rhythm guitar, backing vocals, and of course Jonathan Davis himself as the lead vocalist. Although he released two live albums with the band, Davis wasn’t able to complete any studio album. Following the death of SFA’s guitarist Shane Gibson, they had to disband in 2014.
However, an announcement for solo tours from the rock artist emerged in 2017. Davis released dates for the tours, festival appearances, as well as the launch of his solo album that was planned for 2018. This would mark Jonathan’s first billed simply as Jonathan Davis. In January 2018, the famed artist dropped his first solo single, What It Is. He also dropped his debut solo album, Black Labyrinth, on the 25th of May 2018 via Sumerian Records.
He also Composes Soundtracks for both Movies and Video Games
While on tour during early 2000, the Californian native was on the lookout for artistic hobbies to satisfy his creative impulses. This led Jonathan Davis to start writing movie soundtracks in collaboration with composer Richard Gibbs. Before long, the duo was commissioned by Warner Bros to work on the movie Queen of the Damned. The contract was for ten songs to be composed but only five have materialized so far.
The songs include Redeemer, System, Slept So Long, Forsaken, as well as Not Meant for Me. These tracks were sung by the band The Vampire Lestat in the film. Though we could hear Jonathan’s voice as he performed the song in the movie, they had to leverage contractual obligations to keep his voice from appearing on the soundtrack album when it eventually got released in 2002. Aaliyah, who lost her life during filming, was slated to record a duet with the rock star.
Pop Scars – an original fighting game was created by the legendary vocalist in 2000 and was all about bringing famous musicians against each other in one-on-one combat. He drew his participants from bands like Korn, Marilyn Manson, Staind, and Limp Bizkit. Unfortunately, Pop Scars didn’t make it past its early design stages, as Jonathan Davis himself pulled the plug on the project in late 2004. The vocalist later worked with Korn to record original songs for the video games Haze in 2007. In 2011, Davis was hired by Konami alongside Korn to compose the signature tune for the video game Silent Hill: Downpour.
How Rich is the Korn Frontman?
Since Jonathon Davis appeared on the music scene and recorded his first career success as a member of the mu-metal band Korn, the big buck has been rolling in. It goes without saying that his annual remuneration has been increasing as the singer recorded more success with both Korn and his solo effort.
As at the last review of his net worth, the Korn frontman’s fortune was estimated to be in excess of $50 million and still counting. A major part of the singer’s wealth accrued from sales of albums, live shows, and tours. The musician’s artistic talent does not just end with vocals and playing the guitar, Davis is equally talented as an actor and has quite a good number of productions under his belt.
His acting gig opened an inroad into another source of income that has been feathering his nest since he made his debut appearance. The Korn frontman also composes movie soundtracks and is into video games as well.
What does Jonathan Davis Spend His Fortune On?
Armed with a fortune of over $50 million, it is quite natural for the Californian native to be living a life of luxury. While we don’t have up to date information on the number of automobiles and choice properties he has acquired over the years, the truth is that he does have a lot. For one, his house in California is really plush and there are still others that we don’t know of.
The nu-metal expert has revealed that there was a time when Korn had a more debaucherous budget, blowing the total sum of $60,000 USD on liquor while recording their excellent Follow the Leader LP. According to Davis, Leader’s recording session was fuelled by cocaine, speed, and unending gallons of Jack Daniel’s. The band members constantly partied with Limp Bizkit and Deftones during the recording sessions; this constituted part of the expenses.
Here’s what We Know About the Rock Artist’s Birth Family
Jonathan Howsmon Davis was born on the 18th of January 1971 in Bakersfield, California to father Ricky and mother Holly Marie. He has English, German, Scottish, and Welsh ancestry. While his dad earned a living as a keyboardist, the vocalist’s mum had a thriving career as a professional actress, but she is long dead.
Davis spent a better part of his formative years in Bakersfield alongside a sister named Alyssa Marie, a half-brother Mark Chavez and a half-sister who goes by the name Amanda Chavez. Mark Chavez is also a budding rock star and is the lead singer of the alternative metal/ nu-metal band, Adema.
From what we gathered, the Korn frontman endured a tough childhood. He was asthmatic as a child and suffered an almost-fatal attack when he was just five. His parents’ marriage obviously ended in divorce as the records pointed out that the musician also had a stepmother who was emotionally and physically abusive. Davis’ woes did not stop at this. He was sexually abused by a female family friend and his Goth looks, complete with heavy eyeliner, made him a regular target for bullies. The young Davis thus sought solace in music and channeled all his pent-up anger and frustration in his lyrics.
Jonathan Davis has been in a Couple of Marriages
Jonathan Davis has been married on two occasions. It was while the Californian entertainer was still a student of the Highland High School that he met and fell in love with Renee Perez. The duo later became high school sweetheart, dating throughout their stay in the school. Their relationship survived through the years and the couple decided to make things more permanent.
The details of their dating period and eventual marriage were never made public, but the young lovers tied the nuptial knot in November 1998. The records also captured that the only child of that union Nathan Howsmon preceded their wedding as he was born in October 1995. After exchanging marriage vows, the duo only lasted a couple of years together before their union ended in a 2000 divorce.
His Second Marriage was to Deven Davis
Davis found love a second time with Ohio native, Deven Davis. Deven was a former model and pornstar turned philanthropist and clothes designer. The couple wedded in Hawaii in 2004 and subsequently welcomed two kids namely Pirate Howsmon Davis on the 18th of March 2005 and Zeppelin Howsmon Davis born on the 28th of April 2007.
Davis later filed for divorce from his wife in October 2016 citing irreconcilable differences. It wasn’t as if he had stopped loving her but his wife had an addiction and mental health issues that were starting to affect the kids. He took further steps to protect his children by filing for a domestic violence restraining order, blocking any child custody or visitation by Deven. The divorce was still being finalized when Deven passed away on the 17th of August 2018 as a result of an accidental overdose.