Drummer, Producer, Drum Farm Studio Owner
Born in Champaign, IL, John is a life-long drummer who works in rock, power pop and alt-country with such artists as Tommy Keene, Gin Blossoms, Badfinger, Eddie Money, Shoes, Will Hoge, Wilco guitarist Jay Bennett and others. He has toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Japan, England, Ireland, France, Spain, Holland, Belgium, The Phillippines, Brazil, Kuwait, Iraq, El Salvador and Honduras.
John is the owner of Drum Farm Studio in Menomonie, WI, and brings his veteran experience in the music business to pastoral Wisconsin to build a relaxing environment for musical inspiration and creation. Since opening the studio in 2010, John has produced, arranged and performed on tracks by numerous artists recording at the studio. With strong regional connections, as well as artists from abroad, John’s vision for the studio has become reality.
John started his professional career in 1980 with seminal Champaign-Urbana band The Martyrs. He was a founding member, along with fellow high school friends Kent Whitesell, Chris Bowe and Charles Andrews. The Martyrs reunited in 2010 for the re-release of their eponymous first album (originally released in 1983) and two live shows at the High Dive in Champaign, IL on January 21 and January 22, 2011. He also played in Champaign-Urbana bands Nix86 and The Vertebrats.
The Small Square
Richardson joined longtime friend and bandmate Paul Chastain to record and tour as The Small Square. Their debut album, which was co-produced by Richardson and Chastain, was released in 2015. The Small Square toured Japan in 2015.
On the release of Tommy Keene’s Based on Happy Times in 1989, Richardson was recruited to play drums for the subsequent tour (along with Brad Quinn on bass) opening for The Replacements. He played on all Tommy Keene’s following albums and tours from 1992 to 2009.
Joey Molland of Badfinger
Richardson was tagged to play drums for Joey Molland (Badfinger) in 1990. He has toured the US, Canada and Europe with Molland/Badfinger and played drums on Joey’s solo album, The Pilgrim, released in 1992.
From 2008-2012, Richardson played drums for the Gin Blossoms, touring all over the world and recording on their latest album, No Chocolate Cake, released in 2010.
Richardson has toured with many bands including Gin Blossoms, Badfinger, Tommy Keene, Eddie Money, Shoes, Catchpenny, Adam Schmitt, Garrison Starr, Tim Easton,Will Hoge, Kalisa Ewing, Clare Dunn, Chris Hawkey, The Bad Examples, Ralph’s World, Three Hour Tour, Weird Summer and the Bay City Rollers. He has toured throughout the United States and in Canada, Japan, England, France, Spain, Holland, Belgium, The Philippines, Brazil, Kuwait, Iraq, El Salvador and Honduras.
In the studio, he has played drums for Gin Blossoms, Joey Molland (Badfinger), Paul Chastain (Velvet Crush, Matthew Sweet), Tommy Keene, Shoes, Adam Schmitt, Keene Brothers (Robert Pollard and Tommy Keene), Garrison Starr, Robynn Ragland, The Bad Examples, Three Hour Tour, Weird Summer, Jay Bennett (Wilco), Billy Davis (Foghat), Randy Forte & the Reconstruction and The Dygmies.
He has worked with producers Jonathan Pines, Adam Schmitt and Mark Rubel (Champaign); Ken Coomer, Tom Bukovac and Joe Baldridge (Nashville); R Walt Vincent and Danny Wilde of The Rembrandts (Los Angeles); Otto D’Agnolo (Phoenix); Willie Wells (Woodstock, NY) and Jeff Murphy of Shoes (Chicago).
Richardson has performed and/or recorded with musicians including Tom Bukovac, Audley Freed (Black Crowes), John Lancaster (Gary Allan), David LaBruyere (John Mayer), Brad Rice (Keith Urban), Brad Jones (Matthew Sweet, Tommy Keene), Ethan Pilzer (Billy Joe Shaver, Jewel, Big & Rich), Jay Bennett (Wilco) and Paul Chastain (Velvet Crush, Matthew Sweet).
Richardson has performed on Fox News All-American New Year’s Eve and 12 News Phoenix – Downtown Goes Live (with Gin Blossoms), Late Night with Conan O’Brien (with Tommy Keene), WGN News (with Shoes and WGN Morning News (with Ralph’s World).
John is currently sponsored by
- MapleWorks Drums
- Paiste Cymbals
- Evans Drumheads
- Vic Firth
- Groove Juice
- Slug Percussion
- Heritage Cajon
- Alien Ears