I’ve been a singer-songwriter for more than fifty years and during that time I have been privileged to work with lots of talented musicians.
Before releasing my first solo blues based album I was a founder member of the folk group Tudor Lodge which was originally formed in 1968. We started playing at the White Horse in Reading, England and later we made appearances at other clubs on the folk circuit. In 1970 Lyndon Green and I were joined by American singer and flautist, Ann Steuart.
Tudor Lodge then toured the English folk circuit for almost two years, teaming up with manager Karl Blore towards the end of 1970, and releasing our first album in 1971: “Tudor Lodge” (Vertigo 6360043). Later that year, we appeared at the prestigious Cambridge Folk Festival and also at Weeley Festival in Essex.
Annie left Tudor Lodge in 1972 and was briefly replaced by Linda Peters, who became better known through her work with husband Richard Thompson. That year we toured Holland where we featured on Dutch Radio and just after that Tudor Lodge disbanded as the members of the group wanted to pursue their various careers.
Lyndon, Annie and I did get back together in 1980 but Annie left after a couple of montsh to live in New Hampshire and was replaced by Lynne Whiteland. In 1988 Lyndon retired from performing and is currently living and working in Japan. Since then Lynne and I have continued as a duo presenting our own brand of music: New and Old, Original and some well known songs — Humour, Harmony and a touch of Nostalgia.
We went on to tour in Holland and Japan, recorded in Nashville and have released several Tudor Lodge CD’s which you can buy in the store page at the CastIron Recordings web site.
Although I wrote the majority of the songs for our first album back in 1971, I wrote very little in the intervening 40 years. Luckily, Lynne became a prolific and accomplished writer, so Tudor Lodge had no shortage of material.
Then in January of 2011, I wrote half a dozen songs. One of them was a bluesy number; five of those songs fell by the way side, but the blues number had struck a chord. Over the next few months, a couple of dozen blues based songs had joined the growing list of songs which took me in a completely new direction. By the summer I knew that these songs had to be the basis of a solo project. It took until August of 2012 for recording to start, and by December it was done. Mixing took a further three months. In May 2013, the John Cee Stannard Blues Orchestra CD, “the Doob Doo album” was launched.
So having my roots in the folk world, I found myself writing, arranging and producing an album of my own blues based songs. Finally, a dream I had nurtured for decades had become a reality.
In response to the encouragement I received during the recording of “Doob” and in the months that followed, I formed my gigging band Blues Horizon; We started performing together in November 2013 as John Cee Stannard and Blues Horizon.
I have also written a novel called “The GRiPPENHAM Tales – The Hidden Truth” which is available on Kindle Books. This is a fantasy novel for children of all ages aged 12 to 112. I started writing it in 2007 and finished it in July 2012. All work on it then stopped as I concentrated on “the Doob Doo album”. In a nut shell, I would describe the book as “Harry Potter meets The Famous Five”. Work on publishing was further put back when I started work on the next album – “Bus Depot Blues”. That project was completed in June 2014. The book was then published and made available in Kindle inAugust 2014. Visit the site. It will be published by Austin Macauley later in 2017 and will be available in paperback as well as the revised and re-edited version being available on kindle (So- to be honest – I wouldn’t buy the current Kindle version!).
In 2006 I met a guy called Eddie Winship who recruited me for a radio station he was developing. As a result of that, I started presenting a radio program called My Music Mix in which there’s almost no music genre that doesn’t get a look in. This is now a monthly show called MyMonthly Mix. In 2015 I started hosting another show, The ‘John Cee Blues Hour’. see RADIO.
What is the largest audience I’ve ever played to? Well, aside from radio and TV that would have to be Weeley Festival in 1971 where Tudor Lodge played to an estimated 150,000 people.
In 2004 I thought it would be fun to do some wok as a film extra. I haven’t done a great deal, but my first job was in The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, shortly followed by 10 days work on Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire.
Since then I have worked on The Da Vince Code, James Bond – Skyfall and The Double, and an episode of Wolf Hall.
Yep! That’s me – Bottom Left on the Harry Potter set, back in 2004.