J O H N S O U K I
Since the age of 6, John knew he was destined to create and perform music. Born and raised in Venezuela, John was taught his first three guitar chords by his father, whose playing he admired. "Every afternoon, Dad would sit and just play whatever came out. I wanted to follow on his footsteps."
It was not until the age of 14 that John truly devoted himself to the instrument, learning from listening to the greats such as Jimi Hendrix, Eddie Van Halen, Eric Clapton, Steve Howe, and many more, often doodling music notes, lines, and chords on his books during high-school classes. He vividly remembers trading guitar lines and progressions with his dad song-by-song, jamming to the radio channels on cable, intensifying his desire to further pursue a career in music.
After graduating high school in 2005, John quickly joined various bands and toured around the United States, ultimately landing in Boston, where he attended the Berklee College of Music in 2007. In his short stay, he added an assorted musical vocabulary to his music, combining elements of Jazz, Gospel, Pop, Classical, and Country, with his pre-existing Rock background. Newer influences in the class of John Petrucci, Guthrie Govan, Greg Howe, Richie Kotzen, Allan Holdsworth, Paco De Lucia, and Al Dimeola, became prevalent in his playing.
In 2009, John co-founded Atlanta-based Rock/Hip-hop act, KontraBand Muzik, with whom he toured and played with artists including L.A. Guns and Bone Thugz N' Harmony, Christopher “C-Ray” Roberts, and showcasing for Capitol Records, Konvict Muzik, Upfront Entertainment, and others. After parting ways with the group in the summer of 2010, John joined forces with Nashville recording artist Corey Cox. Many doors opened up for his career as a result of it, including being the group chosen to open for Sugarland at a sold-out Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the victims and families affected by the Indiana State Fairgrounds stage collapse. The group has also been on the same bill and/or shared the stage with Toby Keith, Dierks Bentley, REO Speedwagon, Darius Rucker, Big & Rich, Chris Young, Larry Crane, and many more. The band also gathered the attention of various record labels, including Sony, Showdog, RCA, Big Machine, and Mercury Records.
Soon after his departure from the group, John became involved in an array of musical ventures, which include his musical partnership with Grammy-nominated songwriter and producer John Conté (Shakira, Jamie Foxx, Kid Cudi, Weird Al Yankovic, Cassie, Nickelodeon), writing for his upcoming Progressive Rock/Metal project IRIDIC, writing for his co-owned production company, In The Now Music, composing for film and TV, performing with Indianapolis-based group Living Proof, and touring the country with artist spanning various genres of music.
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Benson Custom Pickups