From Preacher-In-Training To Soul Singer, Paul Janeway Of St. Paul And The Broken Bones Discusses His Journey

St. Paul and the Broken Bones will be headlining the Lost Art Music Festival on June 12.
St. Paul and the Broken Bones will be headlining the Lost Art Music Festival on June 12.
Credit The Roberts Group

The Lost Art Music Festival was founded in Atlanta during the pandemic by Jim Etheridge, and the inaugural event takes place June 12 at Fox Hall Resort in Douglasville.

A diverse lineup of Americana acts will perform, and the headliner is St. Paul and the Broken Bones. “City Lights” host Lois Reitzes spoke with the founder and lead singer of the band, Paul Janeway, about his soulful sound and latest music.

Interview Highlights

The story behind the band’s name:

“I actually didn’t come up with the name of the band. The bass player — who also co-founded the band — he thought it would be really interesting to call me St. Paul because I don’t really have many vices,” Janeway said. “I’ve never drank, or smoked, or anything like that. He thought that would be funny and, of course, with the preacher background, it’s kind of tongue-in-cheek.”

He continued, “And the Broken Bones comes from the first song that me and Jesse (the bassist) ever wrote in his living room. It was called ‘Broken Bones and Pocket Change,‘ and the line goes ‘All she left me with was broken bones and pocket change. So all she left me with was hardly any money and this band.’ So it kind of worked out that way.”

His journey from training to be a preacher to pursuing a degree in accounting to being the lead singer of a soul band:

“I grew up in a small town in Alabama and wasn’t exposed to very much. The church was the epicenter of my life. I think as I got a little more older and got a little more worldly, my worldview started expanding a little bit. There’s some things I started disagreeing with socially and started falling out of love with it and even started developing some venom for it,” recounts Janeway.

He continued, “I was working at a mechanics shop and when the economy went bad in 2008 and I lost my job and was on unemployment. I was like, ‘Man, I got to figure my life out.’ I met who would be my future wife in that time span. So, I decided that I kind of liked accounting, so I went back to school and started learning to be an accountant, all the while I was still playing music. I really thought it would just be a fun hobby. And then me and Jesse, who had always been friends through music, made this little EP, and it ended up being something.”

How it feels to be performing in front of a live audience again:

“You know, we tried some of the socially distanced shows, and to be frank, they’re sometimes a little awkward. You try to do your best with whatever the CDC has recommended us to do, but it’s been a tough thing to navigate,” said Janeway.

“Everybody in the band is vaccinated, so we’re raring to go. For me, I love the Atlanta area. The Atlanta area has been so good to this band, and I’m just excited to play shows again.”

The socially distanced concert will operate at 20% capacity, and all attendees must confirm COVID-19 vaccination or negative test prior to entry.

You can find more information about the safety regulations here. St. Paul and the Broken Bones tour dates can be found here.



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