(Feb. '99) - Born and raised in Wichita, Kansas, John grew up listening to his older brother's hand me down records, including Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, and Jerry Lee Lewis. He became greatly influenced by these artists and gradually taught himself how to play guitar. As he grew older, a successful professional acting career temporarily halted any musical ambitions but gradually taught himself how to play guitar. As he grew older, a successful professional acting career temporarily halted any musical ambitions but gradually more and more acting jobs came John's way that required his guitar playing and singing skills as well, including a guest starring role on ABC TV's Lady Blue and commercials for Oldsmobile, Krogers, and Old Style Beer.
He also started playing out at local Chicago bars, parties and jam sessions and continued writing his own original material. Always an avid Buddy Holly fan, John and his brother one day took a trip to the Norman Petty Studios in Clovis, New Mexico where most of Buddy's hit songs were recorded. They were greeted happily by Vi Petty, Norman's widow, who gave them a firsthand tour of the studio and enough stories to last a lifetime! Little did John know at the time just how much Buddy Holly would become a part of his life. Several years later John was cast as Buddy Holly in a World Premiere production of Be Bop A Lula, which was produced at Kansas City's American Heartland Theatre, where John received a Drama Desk award for his portrayal of Buddy. During his run at the Heartland Theatre many people asked John if he had any recorded material they could purchase and this inspired him to produce his first CD release entitled A Boy's Gotta Do What A Boy's Gotta Do.
A fifties-esque blend of pop, rock, country and even surf, this CD has sold extremely well and features ten original songs and two covers. Most recently a bonus track was added, Hey Buddy which is John's tribute to Buddy Holly. This song first debuted live on WGN's Steve and Johnnie Radio Show and has aired on regional stations across the country as well. The last few years have seen John reprise his role as Buddy in "Buddy...The Buddy Holly Story" in San Diego, Chicago, and Toronto. In every city, John has garnered critical acclaim for his detailed and authentic portrayal of Buddy Holly, but he is most proud of Niki Sullivan's assessment: "John is a reincarnation of Buddy Holly, he is that good. He has the same determination in his eyes that Buddy did and when John is onstage, he is a totally dynamic performer, just like Buddy. John is awesome." This validation from an original member of Buddy's band The Crickets helped make John believe he was doing something right.
Recently, John had the pleasure of headlining the 40th anniversary of the Winter Dance Party tour. This demanding, geographically grueling tour was a re-creating of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper's final days. Highlights of the tour included receiving the key to the city of Green Bay, Wisconsin from the Mayor, performing at the legendary Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, IA and working with Robert Reynolds of The Mavericks, Niki Sullivan, and Ernie Valens, Ritchie's cousin.
Other concert highlights over the years include sold out shows at the historic Cains Ballroom in Tulsa, OK and at the Paramount Arts Center in Aurora, IL. Currently, John is performing in concert at various venues across the U.S. and is working on new original material for his next CD. His most recent schedule can be obtained at www.yourBuddyJohn.com or his hotline at 800-962-7052. E-mail: Mueltone@aol.com
"A boy's gotta do what a boy's gotta do"