Guitarist/songwriter John Barraza has been making music for almost 20 years now. Largely self-taught, he began his musical journey with an acoustic guitar and a dream to deliver the best musical entertainment possible. His first playing experience was performing competitively in the SoHo Jazz Ensemble at South Houston High School. This group represented Texas in a national competition and won 4 out of the possible 5 top awards for performance under the tutaledge of Ken Smith and Sheldon Berg.
His first professional gig and recording experience was in a local Tejano band called Space City Band. He recorded a 4 song EP that was never released for Joe Ernest & Grupo Sueno.
Honing his “chops” in Capitol-EMI signed artist Mercedez, he toured the Texas circuit promoting the “Rebelde” (1990), “No Somos Criminales” (1991) and “C’Est La Vie” (1992) albums, which were recorded at Sugar Hill Studios in Houston.
Never content with playing just one style of music, John was an original member of a rock/alternative band called Railroads, who later changed their name to Planet Shock.
For three years he toured the U.S. and Mexico with Sony Discos-signed Fama. All five albums were certified gold. Along with Selena and La Mafia, Fama was one of the first bands in the 90s to be awarded this honor. “Como Nunca” (1992), “En Grande” (1993), “Enamorate” (1994), “Lagrimas De Alegria (1994) and “Tan Facil” (1995) were all certified gold and platinum status. Fama’s sponsors included Bud Light, Levi’s Jeans, and Reebok shoes.
John then toured with established artists Inocencia and soon after Toca Records’ Diamante in 1996 and 97 respectively.
Occasionally, John would lend his studio talents, such as when he recorded bajo sexto parts for David Olivarez albums.
Commuting to San Antonio, John played with Sony’s Amor Y Pasion, a dynamic vocal duo of sisters. While still working in S.A., John played with Spanish rock outfit Metal.
For many years, in between bands, John played with local Houston-based TJ Funk. This variety band played everything from Big Band, R&B, Country, Rock, Tejano, Pop & Jazz.
Recently, John has played with Zolazul (English and Spanish rock), Vital (Variety), Band of Brothers (Blues), TJ Funk (Funk) and occasionally Fama (Tejano). His songs are a distinguished brand of pop with irresistible hooks, fun grooves and memorable choruses.
Whether performing solo, in a duo, or fronting in a band, John Barraza’s calling card is his passion, enthusiasm and professionalism in his art.