Johnny Nicol

November 19, 2010 by  
Filed under Artist 1

Johnny Nicol

Johnny Nicol

Johnny Nicol was born at Ayr in far north Queensland.  His introduction to music was at family gatherings around an upright piano played by his sisters.  His first job was shovelling salt in the sweltering salt pans.  Talent was Johnny’s passport out of hard labour to the wondrous world of music.

In his mid-teens Johnny journeyed south to Sydney and worked at various jobs including playing guitar at Bill McConnell’s Redfern boxing gym where three Maori musicians linked up with Johnny and they formed the now legendary Maori Troubadours.  During his years with the Troubadours Johnny travelled the length and breadth of Australia and often performed up to fifteen shows daily in a marquee on showgrounds.  He learned the craft of entertaining.

Johnny left the Troubadours to go solo.  Travelling overseas he combined his learned craft with his talent and performed in numerous prestigious venues including The Hacienda in Las Vegas, the Ilikai in Honolulu, the Fontainbleu in Miami, Lycayan Beach Hotel at Freeport in the Bahamas as well as several Playboy Clubs and many hotels and clubs in the UK, Europe and the Far East.
Back in Australia Johnny quickly found his place as a contemporary jazz artist.  Critics acclaimed him the “finest jazz guitar stylist in Australia” and “our own George Benson in both vocal style and jazz guitar technique”.  His following grew with exposure as a regular guest artist on television’s national Midday Show.  When Sydney’s Regent Hotel first opened its doors Johnny was the “star” in the Don Burrows Supper Club – a role he was asked back to fill regularly.

During 1989 considerable recognition came Johnny’s way with his nomination for three major awards – the Mo Award as an entertainer, the inaugural Ricky May Jazz Award and the Artist and Performing Rights Award for the best Australian composition for his song “Where the love is” – a song featured on his album for Larrikin Records. 

In 1990 the luxury Radisson Plaza Hotel, newest of the Cairns tourist resorts brought Johnny back to  far north of Queensland to open and star in the hotel’s showroom – the Johnny Nicol Supper Club.

His albums include Touch of  Blue, Traces, I Remember, Where the love is, Moving Forward and Just the way you are.
Johnny is now living on the Sunshine Coast and continues to travel interstate and overseas for appearances.

For more information, visit Johnny’s website at

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