John was born and raised in the Scottish Borders before moving to Edinburgh to study Architecture. During his student days he began playing guitar in folk clubs/ societies and particularly enjoyed accompanying the young Shetland fiddlers who were also studying in the City at the time. Throughout his professional career John continued to play guitar and is currently in two separate guitar duos: one playing arrangements of classical/ folk/ traditional tunes; and the other covering early jazz/ blues/ old time music. He also likes to arrange traditional tunes for flat-picking and finger-style playing.
John attended GFW courses over a 10-year period taking mandolin, song and mixed instrument classes. He has also played mandolin in the Islay Pub Session since it started over 12 years ago and currently plays in 'Kelvin's Kats' - a band made up of several regulars from the pub session. He has been teaching music since retiring early from his profession.
Outwith music John's interests include walking, reading and gardening. He is also a member of Historic Scotland, The Scottish Wildlife Trust and The National Trust for Scotland.