John Clarke

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John Clarke Collection


John Clarke
Drummer and Vocalist with Jonathan J + The Fifth Edition, The Footsteps, Friar Tuck and The Village Gate and Doubtful Sounds

John Clarke was born in Christchurch on July 11th 1950.  His father (Desmonde) played piano, piano accordian (in the Elaine Moody Band), cornet, and ukelele.  For some reason John preferred to learn the drums.  He was taught by the legendary Leon Jayett, and started earning money playing drums with a piano player at private functions from the age of around 10.  Next outing was as a young teenager playing drums with radio announcer George Balani on guitar at a few Italian Club functions, where Wipeout was a favourite.  Leon also volunteered John as the drummer in an all female group, who could not find a female drummer in those days to play at youth clubs.  His first major group gigs was with Jonathan J and the Fifth Edition at The Bush Inn Courts for a year or so.  He then joined The Footsteps for eight years.  The Footsteps were very successful covers band, who also recorded five singles of their own material, appearing on many TV Talent Shows and Pop Music Shows.  They worked six to seven nights a week, plus Saturday afternoons at pubs and private functions all over Christchurch.  The Footsteps were thought to be the highest paid local group in Christchurch for many years.  After spending some time travelling when The Footsteps finally split, John joined the hugely popular group Friar Tuck for three years or so playing at The Redwood, The Russley and The Sandridge hotels.  Band members were Larry McKay (Guitar), Brian Smith (Bass), Eric Robinson (Keyboards) and John Clarke (Drums) - of course!  His next stop was a spell with Village Gate with Don Clarkson and Andrew Lee playing at Nancy's as well as private functions.  John spent thiry-four years living in Auckland, and was involved in film acting, stage and voice-over work.  From 1987 until 2018, John was living in Auckland, and was involved professionally in film acting, stage and voice-over work.  He won Best Actor Short Film in the NZ Film Awards in 2014.  He has now returned home to Christchurch to live, and is currently supplementing his pension by singing solo at retirement villages around the town.


John Clarke

The Footsteps - Neville Barrie, John Clarke and Eric Robinson



Additional John Clarke and related groups information is available on the following individual pages .....


Use links to supplementary data Jonathan J + The Fifth Edition   º    Footsteps   º    Friar Tuck   º    Village Gate Use links to supplementary data