John Evans 1934 – 2015
John was born July 21st 1934 in Cardiff. He started playing clarinet at 15. With his first band rehearsals took place in his front room at home, when their neighbour Mr Rogers couldn’t take any more he would tap on the living room window and that was the sign to stop.
In 1952 he did his National Service in the RAF, playing in the Fighter Command Band. After completing his National Service John went to the Guild Hall School of Music and after that he stayed in London and worked as a professional musician. John worked with many bands including Freddy Randell, Mick Mulligan and George Melly, Lynn Saunders as well as backing top-line cabaret entertainers such as Clinton Ford. John also played drums and sax.
In 1957 he met Jean and they lived in a flat in Earls Court which they shared with Ray Warleigh. Jean and John were married in 1961. Sian was born in 1964 and Jemma in 1967
To support his new family he became an English Lecturer at Southgate College, forming a band there called The Complete Works. He taught there for the next 18 years continuing as a semi- professional musician.
After he took early retirement in the mid 80’s he worked full time as a musician working with Trevor Anthony, on drums, the Bob Guthrie Band, the JCM Band, Gentle Jazz and Harlem Airshaft with Mike Nash, Chris Hodgkins and Max Brittan. John was also a member of the Anglo Welsh Allstars and Dick William’s Six.
Mike Nash (Trombone), John Evans (Clarinet), Max Brittain (Guitar), John Ferguson (Double Bass) and Clive Pracy (Drums). Ealing Jazz Festival August, 2000. Don Cook replaces Clive Pracy in 2008.
John Evans with Harlem Airshaft London 18th January 2008 playing Rosetta
John Evans Memorial Evening, Tuesday 5th April at the PJS, Cafe Jazz, Cardiff
Please click the link to see a video of the evening by Paul Dunleavy. Many thanks for the PJS for organising the event
John Evans Memorial Evening video featuring the Dick Williams Six + Tim Wacher, Lynn Saunders, Chris Hodgkins, Bob Tunnicliffe, John Hummerstone on Tuesday 5 April at Café Jazz, St. Mary’s Street, Cardiff.