Singer-songwriter-musician John Babcock was born in Nyack, New York, a small village situated on the banks of the Hudson River. At age six, John’s father introduced him to the drums, teaching him various styles of rock, jazz, Latin and swing, as well as rudimental snare drum. Having mastered drums, John turned his attention toward other instruments. Acquiring a bass guitar from a friend in middle school, John proceeded to absorb every McCartney/motown bass line he heard.
When John was eleven, he auditioned for The Pearl River Cadets Drum & Bugle Corps and got a spot in the drum line. There, his father’s instruction served him well. He performed with the Corps for six years, developing his technique and winning numerous percussion awards. In 1972, the Cadets performed for United States President, Richard M. Nixon. In 1975, the Corps won seven captions in a single competition and became the 1975 American Drum Corp and Heritage Color Guard Circuit Champions.
By the fall of 1976, John joined The Muchachos from Hawthorne, New Jersey, a corps considered one of the best in the country. He played in The Muchachos snare line for two years, performing with the Corps at the CYO Nationals, “Dream” Contest, the U.S. Open, the American International Open, the World Open, and many other top national shows. On August 17th 1977, the Corps performed at Giant’s Stadium in the Meadowlands to a sold-out audience of 77,691. They also played at Shea Stadium August 19th, 1977, home of the Mets, and the site of two historic Beatles concerts.
John left his drum corps days behind in 1978 when he was offered an artist development deal with Suede Productions and New Jersey producer, Bob Suede. Over the next couple of years, he composed and recorded dozens of original songs, developing and refining his work. John worked with singer-songwriter Leslie Pearl (If The Love Fits Wear It) who sang background vocals on his sessions, along with session guitarist Keith Loving (Feel Like Making Love to You).).
John was shopped as a solo project and also was encouraged to get involved with various group ventures. At various junctures in his early career, John cut his teeth as a member in good standing bands like "Street Machine", "Spectrum", "ShadowFax", "Four On The Floor" (a Rockland County, NY favorite), and a memorable pop/early-new wave unit called "U.S. City". Headlining at C.B.G.B.s in the early-80's to capacity crowds John penned one of his best early tunes during this period for this band; "The Car Tune". John recorded two albums with two of the bands, U.S. City and 4 On The Floor, and continued to compose his own brand of pop songs and performed at many of the most popular venues in New York City and throughout the tri-state area.
In 1985, John traveled to London, England to begin recording his first solo album at the famed EMI Abbey Road Studios. The finished disc, "Outta De Bleu", an independent release, was a Northeast regional success with the single “Always Be Around” charting at #20 based solely on listener requests on New York radio station WGRC.
In 1988, for the 25th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s Assassination, John composed a tribute song, “Passing the Torch,” and created a video with producer Bob Suede that was aired nationally on “The Joe Franklin Show” on WOR Channel 9. The following year, he was invited to take part in a concert celebrating the 20th anniversary of Woodstock, at the original site on Yasgar’s farm in Bethel, New York. He shared the stage with Woodstock veterans Richie Havens and Wavy Gravy.
When John relocated to Orlando, Florida in 1990, he immersed himself in the local music scene, performing as a solo acoustic act that garnered him a nomination for Best Solo Performer by Central Florida’s #1 music showcase, “The Jammy’s". Among many of the musicians he had either collaborated with or had play on his recordings were Rainbow guitar-god Joe Lynn Turner, Billy Joel drummer Liberty DeVitto and even an impromptu stage jam with actor John Goodman.
Returning to Abbey Road Studios in 1991, he began sessions for his second album, Mathew Street. He composed, performed, and produced the disc and enlisted the vocal, lead guitar, and engineering talents of friend, David Mikeal. The single “Mathew Street” was released in Germany on Deep Cut Records in 1996 and received heavy airplay and excellent reviews.The final CD was also released in England sold in HMV stores, and received airplay on Merseyside Radio. Besides the irresistible title cut, there were other shining moments such as "Far Away", "Watching The World" and the moody, emotional "Wet Road", as well as timeless pop gems like "Pennies in Her Eyes" and "True (Crazy 'bout You)". Steadfastly remaining centered in Central Florida, though, the album lacked the NYC-backed push that would have made it a college airplay staple. Still, hailed by friends, family and fans alike, it remains one of his best works.
In 1997, John joined The British Invasion, a Beatles/‘60s tribute show at Walt Disney World’s EPCOT Center U.K. Pavillion. He performed more than 15,000 shows at Disney between 1997 and 2008. He also toured with the cast of Beatlemania, performing 18 concerts in 14 U.S. cities in 2001.
Between 1997 and 2003, John composed and recorded four more albums: "Life Through a Looking Glass", "17 Castle Heights", "Chiller Theatre" (with guests Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow, Deep Purple) and Liberty Devitto (Billy Joel Band)", and the funky “Nothin’ Mo’ Betta". He also played with Byrds’ founder and Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famer Rodger McQuinn for the Orlando Ballet fundraiser concert in 2002.
During 2003-2004, John saw the release of two compilations of his earliest recordings, "1st Sessions" and "Hackensack Daze". He recorded and released "The Gnomes of Marydell" in 2005 and "It Is What It Is" in 2008, the latter marking a return to basics musically which spawned many rich tunes. John has just released a new DVD entitled JB's Abbey Road Studio Tour & Video album. The 75 min. disc contains video footage of John's 1980s-90s recording sessions at the legendary London studio, where he recorded many songs from 1985 and 1995. It is an amazing tour narrated by John of his times at Abbey Road. The DVD also contains many of John's music videos, and his PBS TV Special broadcast shown nationally. Also just released is a new remastered CD collection entitled "Twenty". Both of these new JB products are available at JB LIVE performances. John's is currently recording his 11th solo album "Welcome To My World" 14 track CD, that will be released on Google play in 2017.
John is currently performing his solo act filled with an assortment of timeless favorites and his own unique tunes throughout Central Florida. He also performs freelance as Sir Paul McCartney, as well as returning to the stage with British Invasion alumni,known as "Beatlebeat" playing similar British-hits and as a Beatles show.
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