Saturday, August 1, 2009
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
John's musical background is quite extensive with his first performance being at the age of 10, when he entered a local talent quest and sang "All Shook Up", taking out first prize. Whilst still at school he organised a group called the Shadows, named after the original group, and John played lead guitar. His father managed the group and they played at local dances at weekends. He was encouraged by his father and he even bought him his first electric guitar.
In 1962, when he was 15, John left school and got a job in a forestry camp. However, music was of prime importance in John's life and when he was sixteen he moved to Auckland where he acquired a job as a guitar player in a club. When the vocalist there became ill, John took over the vocal duties as well. While in Auckland he had a short spell with Sonny Day and the Sundowners, and it was while with them that he met Eddie Low.
John and Eddie moved to Australia in 1963 after signing a nine month contract to sing at the Riverside Inn in Melbourne. After that contract expired, John moved to Sydney and joined a group called the Dingdongers. John stayed with them for about a year and during his time with them, the group changed their name to the Sundowners.
By 1966, still in Australia, John had decided to go solo and secured the services of New Zealand promoter Graham Dent as his manager. Graham had previously been responsible for the successful career of Johnny Devlin and had also managed Max Merritt and the Meteors for a while. Graham gave John a new image, changed his hair style, new mod clothes and impressed upon him the importance of putting effort and action into his music and performances. Dent organised to have John appear on Australian television's "New Faces Of 1966". At this stage Dent had him performing under the name "The Secret", and he was so popular that there were huge numbers of offers for work. Dent kept him away from the promoters and press until after he had made an appearance on "Bandstand". He then launched John to the Australian music world as JA-AR and promoters were scrambling to sign him up.
John's first single as a soloist was released in 1966 on both the Sunshine and Komotion labels in Australia as JA-AR and was called "The End (Of The Rainbow)"/"You Still Love Him". This was followed early in 1967 with "Please Help Me I'm Falling"/"Girl Girl Girl" just on the Sunshine label. Owing to his television exposure, both singles did quite well. http://www.sergent.com.au/johnrowles.html
Monday, July 27, 2009
The Door/Surfin' Bird/Roses (Live)/Minor Threat (Live)/Madman (Live)
The "Door" was the 4th single of Freak Show and could only make it to #25 chart wise and only had a stay 6 weeks . All four singles were repackaged in a box set called The Freak Box it was released in November 1997 and contains a bonus CD containing interviews with the band members about the singles and their respective albums album.
Abuse Me/Undecided/Freak (Remix For us Rejects)
Silverchair are one of the most acclaimed and successful bands in Australian music history.
The group's members were all born in 1979 in the Newcastle surf suburb of Merewether. Singer/guitarist Daniel Johns and drummer Ben Gillies started making music together at primary school and schoolmate Chris Joannou later joined on bass. They got their big break in mid-1994 when they won a national demo competition conducted by SBS TV show "Nomad" and Triple J.
The band changed its name from Innocent Criminals to Silverchair and in August 1994 they released their winning demo - a track called "Tomorrow". The song eventually spent six weeks at #1 on the Australian singles charts and 20 weeks in the top 10. In 1995 it became the most played song of the year on U.S. modern rock radio.
Silverchair's debut album "frogstomp", recorded in just nine days in early 1995, was a raw sounding slab of alternative rock. A #1 hit in Australia and New Zealand the disc went on to become the first Australian album since INXS to hit the U.S. top 10, selling more than 2.5 million copies throughout the world. As "frogstomp" and "Tomorrow" propelled silverchair to music superstardom through 1996 the group juggled memorable performances on the roof of Radio City Music Hall and tours with Red Hot Chili Peppers alongside full time schooling commitments back home in Newcastle.
The trio also found time that year to record their sophomore album "Freak Show" which was released in February, 1997. A more adventurous piece of work than "frogstomp" this disc yielded three top ten singles in Australia - "Freak", "Abuse Me" and "Cemetery". Global sales eventually exceeded 1.5 million copies in spite of the fact that the band had to juggle world tours while trying to finish their final year of high school.http://www.chairpage.com/biography/
"Abuse Me" was the second single of the Freak Show album and climbed to #9 on the charts and had a stay of 12 weeks 2 non album tracks "Freak (Remix for us rejects)" and a rousing rendition of the Master's Apprentices "Undecided".