I started playing the guitar at around 11 years old having heard my neighbour playing Tarantas. Fell totally in love with Flamenco and the guitar.
He, after much persuasion on my Mum's part, agreed to take me on as his only student. After having studied with several teachers in London, I studied guitar in Spain with Paco Peña, Paco Serrano, Manolo Sanlúcar among many others, came to Rotterdam and studied 6 years with Paco Peña at the Conservatoire, becoming the first graduate performer of Flamenco guitar.
I've been fascinated by the guitar all of my life, from George Harrison's solos in the Beatles then seeing Julian Bream on telly and being mesmerized by his humble virtuosity.
Playing guitar is the world to me but especially playing music with others.
I have had the privilege to play with and learn from some truly great musicians who have inspired me and helped me find my own voice on the guitar.
The Quartet started out when I was invited to play at the Guitar Festival at Edam some years ago. I was impressed at the line up and felt proud to be invited to perform.
I'd heard Ron play at a concert and really liked his steady style on Cajón so I called him and asked if he would like to join me at the festival. We had not played together before, but we clicked straight away and we played a very nice concert together.
We carried on playing several concerts together and whilst rehearsing at Ron's one day, he played me a Flamenco CD which was very good. I had to ask, "Man, who's that guy on the bass? He's terrific!"
So I called Franklin and asked him over for a jam. We too had an immediate connection and Franklin joined us making us a trio. We played a couple of years all over the Benelux, fine tuning our repertoire.
I first heard Paul at a festival I played at with the trio. He was playing saxophone in a Flamenco band. I just adored his playing which was a good thing because he called me and asked me to join his band 'Compasión' which I did and we released the critically acclaimed CD 'Salmuera' together.
Paul soon joined up with Ron, Frankie and me to form 'The John Fillmore Quartet' which I am now, very proud to call, my band.