A long time ago in a hospital that no longer exists, a wonderful woman gave birth to her fourth and final child. She and her then-husband resisted the urge to drown the child, or to sell him to gypsies. His childhood misadventures proving nonfatal, he grew and learned to play the guitar. Much later, he started to write songs, and when he sang them, people didn't throw him out the door, so it encouraged him to keep doing it!
Once he realized that he could actually get paid for singing and playing, the child was forever ruined for honest work.....
John Friday, the Tropical Balladeer, is a singer/songwriter originally from Maryland, now living in Florida. After a back-breaking (literally) Army career, John settled in Virginia and, later, in the Sunshine State where he takes audiences on a musical journey “down island,” with a combination of rock, folk, country, reggae, and island styles.
An eclectic set of interests led John through the gamut of college majors, including biology; education; engineering; mathematics; business ("I'd always made
fun of business majors, and suddenly I was one!"); computer science; classics (the most useful part of a classics degree is that you can say "Do you want fries
with that?" in Latin!); and finally, one that combined many of John's interests, History. It took a mere twenty years to complete his baccalaureate, as things like raising children and going to war kept him busy. John's love of History is readily evident, as he will discuss historical events at the drop of a fin-topped hat.
John got his first guitar when he was 13, after attempts at learning the piano and the clarinet were less than successful. For years, John was never far from that guitar. He took it backpacking in the White Mountains of New Hampshire; while working on a crabber in Chesapeake Bay; even while skiing in Maine & Colorado. He still has that guitar, although his collection has grown somewhat over the years.
When it came time to "get a grown-up job," John put away childhood dreams and joined the Army. A series of injuries led to a medical discharge after thirteen years of service. Moving back to the Mid-Atlantic region, John shortly realized that (1) he'd never really grown up and never would, and (2) his childhood dreams of making music were still powerful. Eventually, those dreams led to a southward move.
"Dreams...don't leave childhood without them!"
Trop Rock is a blend of rock, country, folk, reggae, island-styles, and jazz, often with a strong steel drum influence. This crazy mixture is thrown in a blender with rum and tequila, and served in a coconut shell (with a little umbrella and a tropical fruit garnish)! Trop Rock evokes images of sailing, sunning, and a laid-back island atmosphere.
The job of the Tropical Balladeer is to take you on a musical journey “down-island,” where your cares melt away and life seems a little less stressful, a little less hectic, and a lot more sunny. The original trop rocker, and the creator of the genre, is Jimmy Buffett, so naturally “Margaritaville” is the first stop on this island journey. But there is much more to the Trop Rock universe, with styles ranging from “Gulf & Western” to “Rockalypso”, from “Salt Water Rock” to “Island Folk.” You never know what you might hear from a Trop Rocker, but you know it’s gonna make you feel good!
So climb aboard, adjust your sails, keep a firm hand on the helm, and let me take you on a musical sea cruise to the little latitudes. Don’t forget the rum!