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 continues today for a total of 33 years. He also began piano lessons at this time. 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. Although these albums feature full band arrangements, a number of solo piano tracks are sprinkled throughout John's discography.
In March 2007, "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.
Exclusively for newpiano.net, John has released his newest album of music, entitled, "Selected Piano Works" in August of 2008. This is a collection of previously released solo piano tracks from all of Mr. Pedersen's albums.
John performs in the San Diego area frequently, at places like Borders and Hot Java Cafe. As an accompanist for Resurrection Church, John also plays at Sunday services and is an accompanist for a number of choir concerts throughout the year. During the week, he teaches individual piano lessons to around 40 promising and talented students. John also practices diligently on the piano 2-3 hours a day to keep his chops up, as well as come up with fresh musical ideas.
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 and straight ahead jazz to chill-out-lounge electronica and progressive ambient music. His main influences are Bach, Debussy, Gershwin, Duke Ellington, Thelonious Monk, Vince Guaraldi, Dave Brubeck, Chick Corea, Keith Emerson, David Lanz, Jim Brickman and David Arkenstone. Currently, he's been listening to a new crop of talented pianists including, Steven Cravis, Matt Fuss, Matt Bachrach, Douglas Trowbridge, Neil Patton and Bradley Joseph.