John Mailander is an acclaimed multi-instrumentalist who moves listeners in concert halls, festivals, and music camps at home and abroad. A sought-after performer, teacher and recording artist, John is known for his deeply rooted voice on the fiddle, mandolin, and other stringed instruments.
John is a member of Bruce Hornsby & the Noisemakers, joining the band beginning in May 2018. He has toured and performed with some of the greatest names in the acoustic music world and beyond, including Billy Strings, Joy Williams, Darol Anger, Molly Tuttle, Tony Trischka, Col. Bruce Hampton, Joe K. Walsh, Lee Ann Womack, Missy Raines, Danny Paisley, Laurie Lewis, and John Reischman, to name a few. He was the featured fiddler for Steve Martin & Edie Brickell's musical, Bright Star, for its debut run in Poughkeepsie, New York.
A San Diego native, now based in Nashville, TN, John is an in-demand session musician. His debut solo album, Walking Distance, features his original compositions, recorded with an all-star cast of improvisational musicians from the New England music scene. He is at work on an anticipated new album of original music, entitled “Forecast”, to be released in January 2019.
As a teacher, John has been on staff at some of the most prestigious music camps in the Americas, including the Augusta Heritage Center Bluegrass Week, Swannannoa Gathering, Puget Sound Guitar Workshop, California Bluegrass Association Music Camp, and Nimblefingers Old Time & Bluegrass Music Workshop. He also keeps a busy private instruction schedule, teaching students all over the country in person and online. His first instructional book, A Fiddler's Guide to Moveable Shapes, was published in Fall 2017. He is a graduate of the Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA.
John plays instruments by Jon Cooper, Austin Clark, and Collings Guitars. He endorses D'addarrio strings. He also recommends Grace Design Preamplifiers, Bartlett Fiddle Mics, Earthquaker Devices, and Alchemist Brewing.
"My interest in music began early on in California, especially through attending the Strawberry Music Festival in Yosemite," John recalls. "The music and community cultivated by artists like the Grateful Dead, John Hartford, and Bill Monroe revealed the language, joy and healing power of music - things I try to model every time I am on stage or with a class of students."
“All of John’s qualities - kindness, intelligence, humor, curiosity, integrity and love of beauty - show up every minute in his musicianship."
- Darol Anger
"John Mailander is a wonderful fiddler, with great improvisatory and compositional skills. He's rooted in tradition but can stretch in many other areas. He's diligent and focused and one of the nicest people you'll ever meet."
- Tony Trischka
“John Mailander’s music sits squarely at the intersection of taste and skill. His prodigious musical abilities are surpassed only by the incredible heart in his playing.”
- Joe Newberry