About Me

Based in Prague, I am an English singer, song-writer, writer, researcher, theologian and teacher with a particular passion for acoustic/jazz music. I work as a soloist as well as partnering with local musicians in various projects. One such partnership was with composer Daniel Kyzlink (as lyricist) for a work called The Rock Mass which was recently performed at the Mēstké divadlo Brno (Brno City Theatre) and previously by the Karlovy Vary Symphony Orchestra.
I love songs which have poetic and evocative lyrics, but for me, music has to groove as well - it has to move you in some way.
There are links here to some of the other projects I'm involved with, but the main purpose of this site is to encourage you to contact me and book me (or me + band) for a gig or workshop/seminar. Hope to hear from you, and thanks so much for visiting.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Advent news

Haven't posted for while - just wanted to let you know that I'm still alive! Having been in the UK for almost the whole of November, it's been a while since I/we have done a gig - but plans are brewing for concerts + a recording in the new year. Watch this space. Also, Daniel Kyzlink and I have been working hard on The Rock Mass project - our new international shop should be online in a week or so, so you know where to buy all your Christmas presents! (If you live in the Czech Republic you can buy already by bank transfer or dobirka). The new international version of the CD is awesome!
You may have also read that I have left AMM. Having been involved in the work for many years it was quite sad to leave, but I was not happy with the way things were developing, so I actually feel quite relieved to have left, and am looking forward to new things - not least doing more gigs and catching up on my studies. If you are one of my AMM friends, I hope we will meet up again before too long.
I wish you a very peaceful advent season. Hope you don't get too seduced by all the matierialism - but don't forget to relax a bit. Still time to book an advent concert if you are interested.
May 2015 be a great year for you.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Concert à St Albian - merci d'être venu!

Je tiens à remercier tous ceux qui sont venus à mon concert près de St Albain le vendredi 18 Juillet. J'ai vraiment apprécié la soirée! - J'espère que vous avez aussi passée une bonne soirée. Un endroit magnifique pour faire un concert! C'était très spécial pour moi de voir tant d'amis, dont certains que je connais depuis de nombreuses années! Très spécial. Un grand merci à Pierre et Raphaël pour aider à mettre en place la salle, et bien sûr grâce à Claudie pour organiser les choses si bien et inviter autant de personnes. St Albain et la région de Mâcon a une place très spéciale dans mon cœur - même si j'ai beaucoup voyagé et vécu dans de nombreux autres pays depuis mon séjour en France, j'ai toujours un peu de France dans mon cœur. J'espère pouvoir y retourner avant longtemps - avec mon groupe! Vous voir bientôt j'espère.

I would like to thank all those who came to my concert near St Albain on Friday 18 July. I really enjoyed the evening! - I hope you did too. Such an amazing place to do a concert! It was very special for me to see so many friends, some of whom I have known for many years! Very special. A big thank-you to Pierre and Raphael for helping to set up the room, and of course thanks to Claudie for organising things so well and inviting so many many people. St Albain and the Macon region has a very special place in my heart - although I have travelled far and lived in many other countries since my time in France, I always carry a little bit of France in my heart. I hope to return before too long - with my band! See you all soon I hope.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Gig at the Galerie Trojský kůň Thursday 19 June

I am playing a gig down by the river in Prague on Thursday 19 June with The Groove Doctors (Ondrej Malina - guitar, Ondrej Hlavsa - drums, Jakub Antl - bass). There's more info on FaceBook here - but the event starts at 7pm and is at the wonderful Galerie Trojský kůň. The beer will the good, the atmosphere wonderful, the music even better (we hope)!! Hope you can make it.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

The Rock Mass CD released

On Friday in Karlovy Vary we had the official ceremony to launch The Rock Mass CD. This was in the town theatre and was part of the programme launching the new spa season in the city. I would like to express my thanks to conductor Martin Lebel and to the Director of the KSO, Šimon Kaňka: without the support of these two 'champions' the CD would not have seen the light of day. Thanks also to the many sponsors in Karlovy Vary and beyond. You can hear excerpts from the recording on The Rock Mass website, and eventually the CD will be available online through iTunes, and for physical sales.
This first version of the CD has all the info in both Czech and English, but does not have the lyrics included. We are currently working on an international 'deluxe' version which will be in English only, and will include a 60-page book of lyrics and other info. We hope this will be available in a month or two.
If you like this project, Dan and I would really appreciate your help with promotion: please 'like' our Facebook page, and buy some for your mother's birthday.

By the way - the new Prague band sounds great! We just got the live recording mixes done from the last gig, and, though I say it myself, it does sound really good. Great grooves, great feel. Will post a video on youtube soon. Peace.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Gig in Prague yesterday (15 April)

Well, thanks to all of you who came to the first ever gig of Reverend John and the Groove Doctors! (any ideas for a real name??) We really enjoyed it, and from the feedback it seems you did too. It was pretty relaxed (bit like a rehearsal with an audience), but that's the way we like it. As you may have noticed there was some video and audio recording going on, so watch out for some embarrassing videos on youtube before too long. I also used my new amp for the first time! What fun.
It is great to work with musicians who make me sound better than I am. I especially enjoyed the song Good with its interesting harmonic progressions and gentle jazz groove - brought to life by Jakub's amazing double bass playing. Another highlight for me was Clean Heart, a song I have not performed for years (recorded badly ages ago) but which sounded so nice with this line up. Ondrej H's drumming was sensitive yet dynamic, and Ondrej M's guitar solos always seem too short! I don't know how he does it. In all, a great first gig - thanks guys.
If you have any ideas for any more gigs, please do email me at john@johndejong.info.
Before too long we hope to record some stuff properly, so watch this space.
Thanks again to those of you who came, and for nice encouraging words afterwards (and for the Korun dropped into the guitar case).

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Velehrad + gig in Prague Tuesday 15 April

First of all a big THANK YOU to all my Catholic friends for the great time at the Velehrad worship event this weekend. Such a good time. Thanks to the organisational team for such a good job - especially to Mirek Přikryl for the invitation. It was good to meet so many new friends - I hope we meet again soon.

Also, if any of you Prague people are interested the John de Jong quartet is doing a concert on Tuesday 15 April. There's more info on my Facebook page. Entry is free (but you have to pay to get out). No - just kidding. It is free, but if you want to you can leave us some cash (wife and 3 children to feed, musicians to pay etc.)  Look forward to seeing you. By the way - the venue is quite small, so it might be good just to let us know via FB that you are coming so we have some idea of numbers.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

In the studio with the Karlovy Vary Symphony Orchestra

A couple of weeks ago we recorded the strings, horns, and other orchestral parts for The Rock Mass in south Moravia at Tonstudio Rajchman in Dolní Bojanovice. Here's a bit of press coverage:

Monday, 13 January 2014

New recording of The Rock Mass

We are recording the Rock Mass!

Thanks to the generosity of Karlovy Vary cultural funding and local sponsors (the work was premiered in Karlovy Vary back in May) we are now recording the Rock Mass. Backing tracks with the band are pretty much done — vocals and orchestra (the KVSO) will be recorded in the next couple of months. We are delighted that the KVSO is involved! Under the direction of Martin Lebel, the orchestra really brought the work to life for the live performances, so it’s great we can record together. The recording will feature one brand new song (whose lyrics are being written as we speak) and should be available in the summer.

The band sounds awesome! Jiří Kučerovký is on guitar (currently playing for Tomáš Klus), on bass we have Tomáš Koudelk (B-Side Band), Dan and Jindřich Volf are playing keyboards, drumming is provided by the excellent Stanislav Pliska, and last but not least we have the amazing Palo Hoda on saxophone.

We are also more than delighted to have Kirsten Joy and Gaz Twist once again providing the lead vocals, with backing vocals from Katerina Klečková, Petra Brabencová and myself — the same team that did the live show.

Please help to spread the joy — like our FB page. Thanks!