Playing in Deep Water
John Stano is a musician and singer/songwriter from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He plays guitar in finger and flat pick styles and rack-style harmonica. The trademark of John's individual sound is the sophisticated interplay between rootsy guitar, bluesy harmonica and warm vocals that he has developed over many years of performance and study. Initially self-taught, learning tunes by ear from recordings, John eventually went on to study American fingerstyle guitar at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music and harmonica with blues great, Jim Liban. His style could be described as acoustic folk-blues but that is a somewhat narrow definition since John's influences also include bluegrass and contemporary acoustic music. His songwriting also tackles subjects not strictly associated with the blues, such as the dinosaur bones that sewer workers dug up under the street by his home when he was a boy. There is a poetic sensibility to his songwriting and a playful love of words that is evident in his serious and humorous compositions. John performs regularly at many regional clubs and festivals. His poetry has been published in the Cream City Review (where he was awarded 1st prize for poetry in 1999), the Wisconsin Poet's Calendar and the Shepherd Express. His songwriting skills have been awarded by the Milwaukee Musician's Cooperative. He has been a featured guest on several radio programs including; Wisconsin Public Radio's Hotel Milwaukee and Simply Folk programs. He has opened for Bill Morrissey, Barbara Kessler, Ed Hall and other national performing artists. He has performed for the Milwaukee Public Schools, given concerts benefiting adults with disabilities, public radio, Earth Day and Hunger Task Force, among others. His song 'Dinosaur Bones' was included on a recent CD compilation called, 'A Celebration of Music/Volume 2'. Series contributors include Les Paul and The Bo Deans. His song, 'Be All You Can Be' was released in May of 2002 as part of a CD compilation called 'One Ball of Clay' which is also for sale on cdbaby.