"His phrasing, timing and tone are the stuff dreams are made of....His music is thicker than sweet potato pie and spicier than okra gumbo." Guitar Player
John Mooney is on a roll. The new millennium has brought him personal peace and musical inspiration. His recent marriage has given him a new lease on life. Like his momma says, "If you want to know what´s going on with John, just listen to his music." That is certainly true on Mooney´s newest release "All I Want". The recording is a brilliant melding of his Delta blues and New Orleans second line roots. Throughout the years he has developed one of the most distinctive and easily identifiable guitar and vocal signatures of anyone alive today.
Part of the original impetus for his interest in music may have filtered down from his grandfather, a musician himself. "He used to play the mandolin and banjo back in the 20's," says Mooney. " He even cut a couple of 78's for the Peerless label that I've heard. It was really hot stuff, a kind of raggy jazz."
John left home at 15 and began playing with Joe Beard at about that same time. Joe introduced him to the first and most enduring influence on the development of Mooney's music, the legendary Delta blues singer, Ed "Son" House. Impressed by the sixteen year old musician's talent, Son and John soon became friends. I wasn't aware of what the opportunity meant, but I knew there was nobody better in Delta blues.' Mooney cites Son's heavily rhythmic style as having a strong influence on him. In fact, the way Mooney adapts acoustic playing to a modern electric format is one of his most distinctive trademarks.
In 1976 John moved to New Orleans and immersed himself in that´s city´s vibrant music scene. John regularly listened to and played with people like Earl King, James Booker, The Meters, Snooks Eaglin, and the man who was to influence his music greatly, the father of New Orleans piano, Professor Longhair. He was playing regularly in front of New Orleans drummers like Zigaboo Modeliste, John Vidacovich, and Herman Ernest, At this place in time John successfully combined the sounds of the delta with the syncopated rhythms of the Crescent City to create the style that has become uniquely his own.
Since 1981 he has been touring with his group, the Bluesiana Band, performing throughout the U.S., Canada, Panama, Europe, Australia and Japan. Current Bluesiana band mates include long time band member Jeff Sarli on upright and electric bass. Jeff may be best known for playing on the Rolling Stones "Bridges To Babylon" album and for sharing the stage with the likes of Keith Richards, Levon Helm, and the Band. Other Bluesiana members include the legendary Professor Longhair band mate Alfred "Uganda" Roberts on congas and percussion and renowned New Orleans drummer Bernard "Bunche" Johnson of Dixie Kups fame. Over the years John and his band have earned a musical reputation that have gained them invitations to play at numerous folk and jazz festivals across the globe, including the Montreux Jazz Festival, the Newport Folk Festival, the Chicago Blues Festival and a yearly appearance at New Orleans' world renowned Jazz and Heritage Festival.
In 2000 Mooney released "Gone To Hell", with special guest Dr. John adding some extra spice. The critics welcomed this comeback with open arms and high praise. Blues Access called the album "a seductive musical cocktail that leaves you deliriously drunk with pleasure every time." Blues Revue wrote, "‘Gone To Hell´ bumps, grinds, and simmers with the emotional intensity of a musician who plays directly from his soul to yours."
On his newest disc, "All I Want," John Mooney continues to cook up special musical treats, served up with his distinctive hot and spicy primal voodoo magic. Judging from this latest effort, this is one incomparable artist who´s still on a roll.