John was born and raised in East Manchester, within walking distance of the city centre.

He started playing guitar in 1976, aged 16, raised on the healthy musical tastes of his parents of 50’s rock and roll, The Beatles, The Hollies & Glen Campbell. These would all become influences along with his own favourites, Pink Floyd, The Doors, early Genesis and The Who.

Discovering Music

The young 16 year old ventured into the nightlife of the city centre, and would frequent the rock and punk clubs of the era; Electric Circus, The Russell Club, The Phoenix, and Manchester Polytechnic to name a few. Punk was exploding and to the beginner guitar player this was a perfect time to start playing in a band.

Young Beatnikbiker

John played briefly in a Mick Hucknall fronted band playing one gig in the Halfway House in Openshaw.

Some of his drinking buddies of that time went on to bigger things; Mick Hucknall from Simply Red & Larry Gott of James to name a couple.


The 80’s came and guitar bands were in decline. The trend became more synth orientated; John became interested in traveling and ended up working summer seasons on holiday camps, hitchhiking around Europe and America, briefly staying at the house of Jimmy Page of led Zeppelin in Henley on Thames.
The 90’s was a decade of riding motorcycles, touring the UK and Europe whilst visiting festivals and bike rallies (hence the name Beatnikbiker) and also his first attempts at song writing.