John Pedersen was born in the suburbs of Chicago, IL in 1960 and moved to California just prior to his 8th birthday. Organ lessons started at age 11, and by age 15, John was already in his first band playing every weekend. At this time he also began playing organ at his church, a position that lasted 29 years. Although groomed into a proficient musician from further instruction in college, John went to work as a lab technician and it wasn't until a layoff 12 years later in the 1993, that he returned to his calling.
For several years, John worked on backing tracks for musicals, was an accompanist for school choirs, continued as a church organist, played in a variety of rock and country bands and started teaching piano. In 1997 John's recording career began with the release of "White Owl", a beautiful debut enhanced by Mark Sarno's co-production and drumming skills. The desert themed concept album, "Legend and Landscape" followed in 2000, this time with Andy Machin co-producing and playing guitar. John's association with Andy continued on the 2002 album, "When Sun Broke Through", which was inspired by an almost fatal accident suffered by John's son. The subsequent recovery of his son is celebrated in this release. John's fourth album, "Paradise", depicts in song a loving and exciting relationship between John and his wife, Sherri. This festive and heartfelt collection was further enhanced by photographs, taken on the Hawaiian honeymoon, that were added to the album's graphic design.
In March 2007, John's next album, "Groovidi", was released. This recording is a smooth jazz masterpiece with solid piano playing by John, but also features great guest musicians like Adrienne Nims on sensuous sax and haunting flute, Andy Machin on tasty guitar and funky bass, and Jeff Winckler with his sensitive and spirited jazz drumming. "Groovidi" is a celebration of the good life inspired by walks on the beach, jazz concerts in the summer, good food and wine, and most of all, the joys of being happily married.
After the success of "Groovidi", John has remained very active by performing at local venues and adding more material to his discography. In 2008, "Selected Piano Works" was made available. In 2009, John's piano instrumental, "Afterthoughts", was selected to accompany a conceptual video (Sequence 1) which, ultimately, won a third place award at the Swan Lake: Moving Image and Music Awards ceremony, in Germany, on October 20, 2009. Subsequently, a newly remastered version of "Afterthoughts" was included on a solo piano compilation album entitled, "Acoustic Visions". After releasing several digital singles during the Spring and Summer of 2010, Mr. Pedersen debuted his "2012" album on 10-10-10. "2012" is a compelling musical voyage through progressive, ambient and electronic soundscapes, inspired by the fascinating theories and conjecture concerning the end of the Mayan calendar (on December 21, 2012). On this recording, John deviated from his recent smooth jazz sound to a more epic, "soundtrack" kind of genre, perhaps more appropriate for an album of this nature. However, regardless of style, John always writes music designed to connect emotionally with the listener. It has what is known as the "wow" effect, and will touch deeply, and lift those who hear the wonderful melodies, textures and rhythms that define John Pedersen's sound.
More detailed information, about these and future releases, is available in the NEWS section of this website.
In his spare time, John enjoys hiking and spending time with his wife and family. He listens to a lot of music as well, everything from smooth jazz to progressive rock.
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