advocacy and activism

Jon Schaffer biography: 13 things about Iced Earth guitarist, Oath Keepers member

Jon Ryan Schaffer is a white man from Florida, United States. He is a heavy metal musician known for being vocal about his political views.

Aside from music, Schaffer enjoys riding motorcycle. He is also interested in studying the American Civil War, particularly the Battle of Gettysburg.

Schaffer is the rhythm guitarist and principal songwriter of Iced Earth, a heavy metal band based in Florida. Here are 13 more things about him:

  1. He was born in Franklin, Indiana, USA in 1968. (a)
  2. He attended Northrop High School in Fort Wayne, Indiana but he dropped out in 1984 and moved to Tampa, Florida where he formed a band called The Rose, which quickly broke up. (a)
  3. On January 20, 1985, he formed a power/thrash band metal called Purgatory. It was renamed Iced Earth before the release of its self-titled debut album in November 1990. (a)
  4. In 1996, he was performing in Berlin, Germany when he injured his neck. He had neck surgery in 2000. He and Blind Guardian frontman Hansi Kürsch put together a side project called Demons & Wizards. Its self-titled debut album was released in 2000. (a) (b)
  5. He owned Spirit of ’76 Collectibles, a historical collectibles store located in Columbus, Indiana. It closed in 2008. (c)
  6. In 2005, his wife Wendi Schaffer gave birth to their daughter, their first child. (d)
  7. In 2009, he formed a highly political side project called Sons of Liberty. Its debut album titled “Brush-fires of the Mind,” which was released in December 2009. (d)
  8. He was featured as a guest vocalist on the Syrian thrash metal band Anarchadia‘s debut album “Let Us All Unite,” which was released on July 3, 2013. He performed on the track “True World Order.” (d)
  9. He did not believe that the new coronavirus (COVID-19) was a serious threat. On July 10, 2020, he said, “I believe this is a psychological warfare campaign on the people more than it is a serious pandemic. I think there’s a lot more going on than meets the eye here, in fact, I know this is. I mean, legitimate doctors and scientists are being banned or censored on YouTube constantly.” In November 2020, he said his five greatest debut metal albums were those of Black Sabbath, Blue Öyster Cult, KISS, Van Halen and Iron Maiden. (e) (f)
  10. He is a Donald Trump supporter and a founding member of the Oath Keepers. On January 6, 2021, he participated in the U.S. Capitol riot in Washington, D.C., USA. That day, rioters disrupted a joint session of Congress to certify the vote of the Electoral College and affirm Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election. (g) (h)
  11. Titled “Wicked Words and Epic Tales,” his first-ever book is the debut release from his new publishing company Wicked Words, LLC. The “Winter Nights” project marks his reunion with former Iced Earth vocalist Matt Barlow, who is his brother-in-law. (d) (i) (j)
  12. At around 3:00 p.m. on January 17, 2021, he turned himself in in Indianapolis, Indiana. (k)
  13. For his participation in the U.S. Capitol riot on January 6, 2021, he originally faced six counts. On April 16, 2021, he pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta to two counts namely obstructing an official proceeding and entering restricted grounds with a dangerous weapon. He is the first suspect of the insurrection to plead guilty. (h)

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(This is a developing story. More details will be added.)

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