Spotlight on John Baxter

Spotlight on...
with Janne GuitarGirl

As a small child, John Baxter remembers a jukebox in the cafe where his mother worked, and his father listened to Johnny Cash and 50s rock 'n roll music.

Although born in Yorkshire, England, John moved to New Zealand aged 12.
He attended Otumoetai College where some great young bands emerged.

Inspired, John learned to play bass guitar on an old electric guitar while flatting with guitarist friend Shane, and they were joined by Tony on drums.

Their first gigs were as a band called 'The Ultra Violets', playing covers at parties and pubs for three years.

Next came original band 'Puppi Chuk' with Warren Lawson and Simon Leigh McKenzie.
John then took a break to spend time with family, but couldn’t stay away from music long and joined forces with Verne Bigwood and Dean Powdrill to form 'S.O.G' (The Sad Old Gits). This band lasted for about five years, disbanding when both John and Dean were too busy with work.

Nowadays, John is music manager for The Incubator art hub. He plays lead guitar with local band 'Liberated Squid', but his passion has always been bass, which he plays now with 'The Carradines' featuring Verne Bigwood on drums and lyricist Brett Williams on guitar and vocals.

His motivation for appearing at this year's Mount Rock Fest is twofold: firstly to support the Cancer Society as he lost both his mother and mother-in-law to this horrible disease, and secondly to perform for the audience with 'The Carradines' along with seven other bands. Rock Fest is at Totara Street on October 28 with all proceeds (after expenses) going to the local Cancer Society. Tickets at


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