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John Einarson

John Einarson

Born and raised in Winnipeg, John Einarson is an acclaimed musicologist, broadcaster, educator, and award-winning author of 15 music biographies published worldwide including Neil Young, Randy Bachman, John Kay of Steppenwolf, Ian & Sylvia, The Guess Who, The Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Arthur Lee & Love, and Buffalo Springfield. Four of his books have been on the Globe & Mail bestsellers list while several have been ranked among the top ten best music biographies in the UK and received award nominations. His book Hot Burritos: The True Story Of The Flying Burrito Brothers received the 2006 ARSC (Association for Recorded Sound Collections) Award for Excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research. John is the author of the critically-acclaimed Desperados: The Roots of Country Rock. He also collaborated with Randy Bachman on his two bestselling Vinyl Tap books. He is regarded as one of Canada’s finest music historians.

John has written for Mojo, Uncut, Goldmine, Discoveries, Record Collector, and Classic Rock and is a regular contributor to the Winnipeg Free Press. He wrote the Juno-nominated Bravo TV documentary Buffy Sainte-Marie: A Multi-Media Life, served as writer/consultant for A&E/Biography Channel’s Neil Young Biography episode, and wrote CBC TV’s The Life & Times of Randy Bachman.  John also served as researcher on the recent Canadian-produced documentary Almost Almost Famous for Merit Motion Pictures. He curated the 2010 Manitoba Museum exhibit Shakin’ All Over: The Manitoba Music Experience and organizes the popular Magical Musical History Tour of Winnipeg each summer. John teaches music history classes on a variety of themes at McNally Robinson Booksellers, the University of Winnipeg and the Manitoba Conservatory of Music & Arts. In January 2016, John was the recipient of the prestigious Order of the Buffalo Hunt by Premier Greg Selinger in recognition of his extensive work in preserving Manitoba’s music history.

As a young guitar player, John has performed onstage with Neil Young, Randy Bachman, Burton Cummings, jammed with Frank Zappa’s Mothers of Invention, and at age 17 opened for Led Zeppelin and Iron Butterfly before 14,000 people.

2 thoughts on “John Einarson”

  1. Allister

    Hello John ; My name is Allister. I have enjoyed listening to you expound on the Winnipeg music scene and music in general over the years.I confess I have not read any of your books yet , but your nice bio here is pushing me toward McNally , to be sure.
    Keeping on the subject of books ,the reason I am contacting you is that I have an unusual piece of ephemera connected with Randy Bachman that I would like your feedback about.
    Years ago I purchased a used copy of “THE LIFE OF
    KING HENRY THE FIFTH” ( softcover ;
    Penguin Books).
    “And ?”; you ask…
    Well inside the book was a bookmark from Mary Scorer books. “Okay, and ?…
    And the bookmark has writing on it.
    The writing pertains to The Guess Who and various bandmembers . ( Randall Charles Bachman , Garry Dennis Peterson , Michael James Kale , Chad Allen and Allen Peter Stanley Kotel )
    There are some other doodle- like phrases including :
    ” The Guess Who’s ” ( in parentheses )
    I am at a point where I am not going to sit on things like this any more. I would say I’ve had this book and bookmark for several decades and apart from making a peripheral inquiry about it to a record store owner a while back , Randy and you are the only “go-to’s” for such a thing , in my mind. I will let you absorb this , and will certainly send images if your curiosity is piqued John ; I am definitely interested on your thoughts about the anecdote. Thanks for taking the time. Looking forward to your response;

  2. Glenn

    Just read Alan Small’s article in the Free Press
    Jogged my memory.
    Lived on Loretta Ave at the corner of Pembina hwy even before Grant Ave was built.
    The building at that corner was like a small house where Mc Diarmid Lumber ran their business. At that time it was basically only lumber.
    As a young kids we used to l
    Climb in the lumber stacks and have peashooter fights.
    I went to Earl Grey Junior High School . I can still remember how packed the Community Club was when the bands played on Friday night.

    The Rancho Don Carlos was south of Grant Ave. About half way to the South end Salz.
    Farther down Pembina Hwy at the University of Manitoba there used to be a drive in theater.
    When the screen was torn down the concession building was converted into a coffee house called the Fourth Dimension.
    I was quite young when my older cousin took me there one night.I can’t swear to it but, I’m pretty’s sure it was Lenny Breau that was playing a solo gig.
    Years later I was going to the Adult Education to complete my grade 12 when I met Lenny’s sister-in-law Judy. She told me her family was concerned about her sister regarding Lenny’s drug use. (He was in LA at the time, I think).
    Being from the south end “Champs” was the place we caught many a band, including London Fog.

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