Known as the "Father of the British blues," John Mayall is an English blues singer, guitarist, pianist, harmonica player and songwriter, whose musical career spans over fifty years.
In the 1960s, he founded the band John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers, a band which has schooled some of the most famous blues and blues-rock musicians of all time, includingEric Clapton, Peter Green, Jack Bruce, John McVie, Mick Fleetwood, Mick Taylor, Don "Sugarcane" Harris, Harvey Mandel, Aynsley Dunbar, Walter Trout, Coco Montoya, Dick Heckstall-Smith, Andy Fraser (of Free), John Almond, Buddy Whittington and Jon Mark.
Using Chicago style blues as a starting point for their sound, which has evolved from album to album, John and the Bluesbreakers have amassed an enviable body of work, with a succession of dynamic albums including the Grammy-nominated “Wake Up Call” that featured guest artistsBuddy Guy, Mavis Staples, Albert Collins and Mick Taylor. And while at one point John was playing a fairly jazzy sound, he has always come back to the blues.
In 2008 Mayall made the decision to permanently retire the Bluesbreakers name and in 2009 started a new era of touring with band members Rocky Athas on guitar, Jay Davenport on drums and Greg Rzab on bass. They toured together for over seven years, averaging about 100 shows a year, and are featured players on John’s last three albums including his latest “Find a Way to Care.” John has also recently released a couple of never before heard live albums from 1967 featuring Peter Green, John McVie and Mick Fleetwood, which along with the new studio albums have been enthusiastically received by critics and fans alike.
In August 2016 there was another big shift when thunderstorms prevented Rocky Athas from attending a festival, compelling John, Greg and Jay to perform as a trio. The sound they came up with lent an amazing new slant to John’s music and he made the bold decision to permanently move to the trio format. A sample of the fireworks they create onstage was released in February entitled “Three For the Road.” Recorded in Germany in 2016, this live CD has been very well received, garnering excellent reviews!
And now starting in May, Carolyn Wonderland will be joining the band. Carolyn will be the first ever woman to hold the position of lead guitarist in any of John’s bands. She will also be one of the featured guitar players on John’s next studio album that will also feature Todd Rundgren, Joe Bonamassa and Larry McCray on selected cuts. - The road continues!