LISTEN TO JOHN's MUSIC
Many people know my name and voice from listening to Classic FM, but farﾠ fewer are aware of my work as a composer and musician, which predate my radio career by a couple of decades.
My musical tastes have always been and remain eclectic. For instance,ﾠ the first records I owned were Bach's Toccata & Fugue in D minor, FrankieﾠLaine singing 'Rawhide' and the debut album by 'The Shadows' - it doesn'tﾠget much more catholic than that!
I taught myself to play the guitar when I was a boy, and would spend hours listening to and aping my heroes such as Chuck Berry, Joe Brown & Hank Marvin. But whilst much of my pocket money went on pop records, I was also buying a lot of classical music, & when the budget was overtaxed, I would borrow classical & jazz albums from the local library.
One of the things I like least is the pigeonholing of music, and I like to think that my open-mindedness in this regard is reflected in my work.
While my activities as a performer in rock bands such as Crow, Mungo Jerry & Boy Bastin were gradually overtaken by my developing career as a radio presenter, my love of composing has remained a constant. Nowadays, I write mostly in a classical idiom, but music and melody will always be indivisible for me, andﾠI'm sure the 'DNA' of the multifarious styles I've been exposed to overﾠ the years continues to influence my compositions.
I hope you enjoy exploring my music as much as I enjoy creating it.
There have been a couple of important and very pleasing developments with my music that I'd like to talk about.
Craig Ogden performed the world premiere of 'Concerto Magna Carta' on the 21st. February in Norwich, and he has now recorded the slow movement from it for release on 22nd. June. The score for this movement is available from the shop.
Having played guitar in rock bands for many years, it was probably inevitable than when I began composing in a classical idiom, I would naturally be attracted by the idea of writing a concerto for guitar and orchestra.
The work had a strange genesis. The energetic finale is based on a piece I composed for electric guitar, back in my rock band days, with the soothing slow movement coming next, and finally, I wrote the first movement – logical really!
I’ve always been a fan of Craig’s playing and enjoyed the recordings he's made of some of my other works for guitar. I love his open mindedness when it comes to music, which is why I’m so delighted he’s played the premiere of my concerto.
Classic FM asked listeners to name my new concerto and I couldn't have chosen a better title than William Holding from Houghton le Spring, Co. Durham who has suggested "Magna Carta".
You can read about the competition here:
You can read a review of the concert here: Concerto Magna Carta Review
Hal Leonard Corporation to publish 'Amazing Day'
I am delighted to have reached agreement with the Hal Leonard Corporation for publication worldwide of my work for Soprano and Baritone soloists, SATB choir and orchestra, 'Amazing Day'. You can hear extracts from this work in the sidebar on this page, and it's very exciting that this music will shortly be so widely available, in both fully orchestrated and keyboard reduction form. I will post a notice on here when it becomes available.
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