John Hall was born in Detroit, MI in 1955. He attended Detroit Public Schools and received his first intensive musical training at Cass Technical High School in Detroit. He is is a graduate of Wayne State University in Detroit where he studied guitar with Charles Postlewate and Joe Fava and received advanced training in music theory as a graduate student under Dr. Richard Parks.
He is an active performer in the greater Detroit area and has played most any style and venue you can imagine. John was a rock/blues guitarist early on and later migrated to classical and jazz. He has always believed that versatility is critical to making a living in music and stresses that to his students.
John is a prize winning composer and his compositions and arrangements have been published by Mel Bay Publications, Editions Orphee and Willis Music Co.
He is the proud recipient of the 2019 Gibbons Prize for best new composition for classical guitar.
John has been a university instructor for over thirty years and has recently retired from the faculty of Oakland University in Rochester, MI. He is still currently teaching at the Cranbrook Educational Community in Bloomfield Hills, MI. and Henry Ford Community College in Dearborn, MI.
John specializes in the study and performance of classical and jazz music. The etudes in Influences were composed with these two styles in mind; combining the harmonic characteristics of jazz with the classical concepts of voice-leading and counterpoint. They are meant to serve as transitional material between the studies of Carcassi/Sor and the etudes of Villa-Lobos.