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Thanks to everyone who supported the IndieGoGo Crowdfunding Campaign

for the new album "Fathers and Sons" to be released Spring 2017!

 

 
 

John Lester

Singer-Songwriter-Bassist-Guitarist

 

 

John is an award winning songwriter who has, throughout his career, had one foot in the rock/acoustic music scene and the other in jazz. As a songwriter, John was awarded the “Song of the Year Award” from the West Coast Songwriter’s Association on two occasions (for The Ways of a Woman and Both a Blessing and a Curse). The title track from his 2007 release, So Many Reasons, was also the winner of the WCS International Songwriting Award for “Best Jazz Song” and he also won their “Best Humorous Song Award” for his tongue-in-cheek ditty, Beware La Merde, about a bit of advice to tourists in Paris.

 

“John doesn’t just have a great voice, he is a voice! Great songs that really communicate.”

- Russ Jennings, KPFA

 

As a solo performer, John has created a unique show featuring his 100-year-old upright bass named Sarah (after Sarah Vaughan, for her lovely vocal-like quality). He also plays acoustic and electric bass guitars, as well as baritone steel string guitar, nylon string guitar, and ukulele, at times utilizing a loop recorder to create live tracks for his songs and improvisations.

 

“Lester’s USP is his supreme mastery of all possible varieties of basses and his use of them as lead instruments…his understated virtuosity demands attention!”

- Maverick Magazine

 

John has released five albums to date: “Live at the Freight and Salvage” in 1999, “Big Dreams and the Bottom Line” in 2003, “So Many Reasons” in 2007, "Jazz?" in 2012, and "Live ~ with Paul Tiernan" in 2015. He is set to release a new studio album of all original songs entitled "Fathers and Sons" this spring. 

 

John’s 2012 release, “Jazz?”, set ten modern rock cover songs into a late 1950’s jazz context and brought together John’s love for both great contemporary songwriting and the open improvisation of a jazz quartet. Released on October 2, 2012, the album steadily climbed the JazzWeek charts, entering the Top 100 in November 2012 and reaching #80 in January 2013.  It also reached #13 on the Roots Music Report jazz chart.

 

“His takes on rock and pop standards with great jazz sensibility and penchant for swing, makes this a wonderful and fresh approach in the canon of improvised music."

- Jim Bennet, KCSM

 

John's 2015 live album was released in conjunction with his European touring partner Paul Tiernan. John and Paul have been touring together since meeting at the Rochefortes En Accords Festival on the Atlantic coast of France in 2005. After ten years of touring a live recording was finally captured on their 2014 US West Coast Tour. The album features 7 songs by each artist and was released in January 2015.

 

“The interaction that goes on between them, both overtly and covertly, is something that’s subtle and sensational, voices and instruments intertwining and blending to weave songs of influence and poise”.

- FolkWords

 

John is currently in the studio finishing work on his next album set for release in spring 2017. The album will feature 10 original tunes in an acoustic format with John on vocals, bass, guitar, and ukulele with Paul Tiernan on guitar and Tim Bulkley on drums. Special guests include electric bass virtuoso Michael Manring, additional drums by Michael Urbano (drummer for Neil Finn, John Hiatt, Sheryl Crow), hammond organ by Baxter Robertson, and piano and accordion by Barry Walsh. Gretchen Peters, whom John has toured with as bassist and support act, will guest on background vocals on the albums first single.  

 

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ShoWS

 

2017 Shows

 

Now booking late spring and summer shows. Please check back to this page for updates.

 

WEDS, MAY 17 - STRINGS in BERKELEY, CA - Double bill with Wesley Morga

"FATHERS AND SONS EUROPEAN FALL TOUR" WITH PAUL TIERNAN

NOVEMBER 8 - PRIVATE HOUSE CONCERT, BOCHUM, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 9 - tba, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 10 - tba, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 11 - PRIVATE HOUSE CONCERT - BRANDENBURG, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 12 - THE PHOENIX, LAUFFEN, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 14 - PRIVATE HOUSE CONCERT, AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS

NOVEMBER 15 - tba, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 16 - tba, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 17 - tba, SWITZERLAND 

NOVEMBER 18 - tba, SWITZERLAND

NOVEMBER 19 - ALTABONOFF, FRIEDENAU, BERLIN, GERMANY

NOVEMBER 20 - PRIVATE HOUSE CONCERT, WERL, GERMANY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

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