What Is John Paul Jones’ Net Worth?
John Paul Jones is an English musician, songwriter, composer, arranger, and record producer who has a net worth of $120 million. John Paul Jones is best known as the bass player and keyboardist for the band Led Zeppelin, which has sold more than 200 million records. Jones performed on the Led Zeppelin albums “Led Zeppelin” (1969), “Led Zeppelin II” (1969), “Led Zeppelin III” (1970), “Led Zeppelin IV” (1971), “Houses of the Holy” (1973), “Physical Graffiti” (1975), “Presence” (1976), and “In Through the Out Door” (1979), and he has released the albums “The Sporting Life” (with Diamanda Galás, 1994), “Zooma” (1999), and “The Thunderthief” (2001). John has also done session and production work for numerous artists, such as the Yardbirds, the Rolling Stones, and Heart, and he composed the score for the 1984 horror film “Scream for Help.” Led Zeppelin was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, and in 2000, readers of “Guitar” magazine ranked Jones #3 in the publication’s “Bassist of the Millennium” poll.
John Paul Jones was born John Richard Baldwin on January 3, 1946, in Sidcup, Kent, England. Both of John’s parents were in the music business, and they toured the country with their vaudeville comedy act. Jones’ mother was a singer, and his father, Joe Baldwin, played piano and arranged music for big bands in the ’40s and ’50s. John began playing piano when he was 6 years old, and due to his parents’ touring, he was sent to boarding school as a child. He studied music at Christ’s College, Blackheath, London, and when he was 14, he became a church organist and choirmaster and purchased his first bass guitar. Jones later bought a 1962 Fender Jazz Bass, and he used it until 1976.
At age 15, John joined the band The Deltas, then he played bass for Jett Blacks, a jazz-rock group. In 1962, Tony Meehan and Jet Harris of the Shadows hired Jones to play with the band for two years, and in 1964, he started doing studio session work with the London-based record label Decca Records. At Decca, he worked with artists such as the Rolling Stones, Shirley Bassey, Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart, Herman’s Hermits, Dusty Springfield, and Donovan. During this time, he began using the name “John Paul Jones,” and he released his debut solo single, “Baja” / “A Foggy Day in Vietnam” in April 1964.
By 1968, he began feeling burnout due to his heavy workload as a session musician, and he has said of that time in his life, “I was arranging 50 or 60 things a month and it was starting to kill me.”
While working as a session musician, John often crossed paths with future Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. After Page’s band the Yardbirds disbanded, Jimmy was left to complete the band’s scheduled tour dates in Scandinavia, and Jones asked if he needed a bass player. Page invited him to collaborate, and singer Robert Plant and John Bonham joined the duo to form the New Yardbirds. Of course, the band later changed its name to Led Zeppelin and became one of the best-selling bands of all time.
The band’s debut self-titled album was released in January 1969, and it reached #6 in the U.K. and #9 in Australia. The album was certified Diamond in Canada and 8× Platinum in the U.S., and their follow-up, “Led Zeppelin II” (which was released in October 1969) topped the charts in several countries and went Diamond in the U.S. and 9× Platinum in Canada. “Led Zeppelin II” featured the hit single “Whole Lotta Love” / “Living Loving Maid (She’s Just a Woman),” which reached #1 in Australia and Denmark. The band’s next album, 1970’s “Led Zeppelin III,” reached #1 in seven countries, and 1971’s “Led Zeppelin IV” was certified 2× Diamond in the U.S. and Canada. “Led Zeppelin III” featured the Platinum single (in the U.K.) “Immigrant Song” / “Hey, Hey, What Can I Do,” and “Led Zeppelin IV” included the band’s most famous song, “Stairway to Heaven,” which was ranked #3 on VH1’s 2000 list of the “100 Greatest Rock Songs.” The band’s next two albums, 1973’s “Houses of the Holy” and 1975’s “Physical Graffiti,” were certified Diamond in the U.S., and their seventh album, 1976’s “Presence,” went 3× Platinum in the U.S. and Platinum in the U.K. The final Led Zeppelin studio album, 1979’s “In Through the Out Door,” was certified 6× Platinum in the U.S., 2× Platinum in Australia, and Platinum in the U.K.
Led Zeppelin disbanded after John Bonham’s death in 1980, and Jones later collaborated with artists such as R.E.M., Lenny Kravitz, Peter Gabriel, Cinderella, and Foo Fighters. He performed on sessions for Paul McCartney and appeared in videos for the former Beatle. In 1994, he released the album “The Sporting Life” with Diamanda Galás, and he followed it with the solo albums “Zooma” in 1999 and “The Thunderthief” in 2001. In 2009, John formed the supergroup Them Crooked Vultures with Dave Grohl of Nirvana and Foo Fighters and Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age, and the band’s self-titled album went Platinum in Canada. In 2019, Jones formed the duo Sons of Chipotle with cellist Anssi Karttunen. He has produced albums such as Uncle Earl’s “Waterloo, Tennessee”(2007) and The Datsuns’ “Outta Sight, Outta Mind” (2004), and he has reunited with Jimmy Page and Robert Plant several times, including Live Aid (1985) and the Atlantic Records 40th Anniversary concert (1988). In 2007, the three reunited for a show at London’s O2 Arena in memory of Atlantic Records co-founder Ahmet Ertegun (with John Bonham’s son Jason on drums), the band’s first full-length concert since Bonham’s death. The concert broke the Guinness World Record for “Highest Demand for Tickets for One Music Concert” (20 million), and a concert film documenting the event, “Celebration Day,” was released in 2012.
John has been married to Maureen Hegarty since 1967, and they have welcomed three daughters together, Jacinda, Tamara, and Kiera. Jacinda followed in her father’s footsteps and became a musician.
Awards and Nominations
In 2010, Jones was awarded a Gold Badge Award by the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers, and Authors, and the Marshall Classic Rock Roll of Honour Awards presented him with an Outstanding Contribution Award. Led Zeppelin won a Grammy for Best Rock Album for “Celebration Day” in 2014, and they earned nominations for Best New Artist in 1970 and Best Rock Performance for “Kashmir” in 2014. The band received an International Artist Award at the 1995 American Music Awards, and they have won Classic Rock Roll of Honour Awards for Event of the Year (Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert, 2008), Film of the Year (“Celebration Day,” 2013), and Reissue of the Year (“Led Zeppelin I, II, & III Deluxe Edition,” 2014). The group earned an Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music in 1977, and they received the Ivor Novello Lifetime Achievement Award twenty years later. Led Zeppelin won an Outstanding Achievement Award at the 2008 “GQ” Men of the Year Awards, and they earned a UK Music Video Award for Best Live Music Coverage for “Celebration Day” in 2013. The band was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2006 and the “Mojo” Hall of Fame 100 in 2003, and they received Kennedy Center Honors in 2012.