Born in Birmingham on June 10th 1947, Johnny has been playing music since about 10 years old. He started playing piano in social clubs during the late sixties. This also involved playing for cabaret artists, usually along with a drummer.
At this time he also became Organist and Choirmaster at a local church, playing regularly for services on a Two Manual Pipe Organ, for a number of years. He played other pipe organs from time to time.
Most social clubs were buying Electronic Organs and Johnny became hooked on Hammond Organs. Taking engagements at many venues, he had the opportunity and privilege to play and gain experience on a wide range of makes and models. These included:- Hammond, Wurlitzer, Lowrey, Baldwin, Conn, Technics, Yamaha etc. He also gave tuition.
"Although I liked organs such as the Hammond C3 and the large "Concert" models like the Concorde, I was particularly fond of the Hammond T. In 1970 I bought a T200 to have at home and still have it to this day.
I have fond memories of playing during visits to family in the U.S.A in the seventies and early eighties. I had the opportunity to see and play models that had not yet been seen in the U.K. It also gave me the chance to play music with my Uncle Jim, who was a very talented guitarist and a big inspiration to me."
Since his marriage to Nida in 1985 Johnny has been playing mainly for dancing, for a number of years using a Yamaha EL25 Organ and producing his first C.D.recording.
"Nida gave me tremendous support and in 1999 she persuaded me to buy a single keyboard, the Yamaha PSR8000, together with a Roland PK5 Pedalboard. This worked out very well and I produced another C.D. called "Dance With Me Vol 2" featuring this keyboard, which is still available.
We moved on to the Yamaha Tyros 1 and then Tyros 4, still with a PK5 Pedalboard. The sound system consisted of a Stage Monitor and a pair of JBL 515 Speakers. They gave a nice sound from the Tyros and were good for vocals too."
Sadly on June 25th 2012, after a long battle with Cancer, my dear wife Nida passed away.
This was heartbreaking for me and for a while I didn't feel like doing much of anything. However, after a few months, friends persuaded me to play again and I started to take on a few engagements. Everyone said that Nida would have wanted me to carry on.
A few months after I started playing again I was contacted by the Local Methodist Church at Shelfield and asked if I would play for the Sunday Morning Services on their Pipe Organ. It's a nice instrument and the folks are very friendly, so I am enjoying playing music in Church again.
Music and good friends have kept me going. I have played at some really nice venues and met some wonderful people and hope to contnue as long as I can and am needed.
Speaking of friends, over the last couple of years or so, a very good friend by the name of Jean has been travelling with me on engagements. She gives me a lot of support and encouragement with my music, She knows about music and is an excellent singer and dancer.
In January 2016 I was invited to appear on "Britains Got Talent" and audition in front of the judges at the Dominiom Theatre in London. It was a very enjoyable experience. Jean went with me and I passed the audition with three yes's, It was broadcast on Saturday May 21st. I didn't quite make the"final cut" to the live semi-finals, having been invited back to London a couple of weeks after the audition. Part of my audition was put on You Tube. I think the producers asked me to sing that song, ""Amarillo" instead of an instrumental piece of music, so as to get the audience "singing along" , which they were more than ready to do. Jean and I really enjoyed being there, the crew were fantastic.. Ever since the broadcast people have been asking about the relationship between Johnny and Jean. The answer is still "Watch This Space" ! ! !
I have continued to work steadily througout and been involved in a variety of events.
Hopefully, I have some enjoyable engagements lined up for the rest of this year and 2018.
Jean and I wish everyone "All The Best" !
Hope you will visit my Website from time to time I will try to keep it updated.
|Concerts in 2018|
|December 17th||Shirley Community Centre, Solihull, B90 3AD|
|December 22nd||Silvester Horne Institute, Church Stretton, SY6 6BY|
|December 29th||Moira Miners Wefare Centre, DE12 6BP|