John Cole grew up in Union Springs, Alabama and was encouraged to play music by watching his brothers.
“I watched how they played and I just picked it up. I grew up listening to old blues records but I wasn’t inspired by any particular artist. I guess if I had favorites, they were in country music. I was listening to the Grand Ole Opry in the early ’50s when I was in fifth or sixth grade. As a kid, I knew more about country than I did about the blues.”
John had always played guitar, but he became a vocalist overnight when, during a performance with the band “The Flaming Rockets,” the vocalist walked off the stage over a dispute with the band’s organist. John realized he had to sink or sing.
After playing with a number of bands, including that of the legendary Joe Beard, John now has his own band composed of Ted Mosher on Bass, John Chaffer on drums and Gian Carlo Cervone on piano and organ.
Although a few country pieces have made their way into his band’s reportoire, the John Cole Blues band is known primarily for their heartfelt blues accompanied by rich and soulful vocals and dynamic musicianship. Songs like “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” and “Mustang Sally” explain why his music appeals to a broad audience.
“My older brother told me whether you have a room full of people or just one person in the room, you gotta give ’em your best.”
That philosphy has made the John Coles Blues Band one of the best-loved and most well-known bands in the region.
Don’t miss the John Cole Blues Band when they perform at the Canandaigua Art & Music Festival on Saturday, July 18 at 7 P.M.