Grammy-award winning Johnny Neel has a voice steeped in Southern music’s bluesy best, with just the right combination of grit and silk. Combined with his prodigious keyboard and harmonica skills it’s no wonder that the former Allman Brothers Band member has spent decades as an in-demand studio player and as a road warrior sharing the stage with the touring bands of Southern music royalty. Along the way he’s become adept at “Every Kinda Blues”, as his latest album title proclaims.
Johnny Neel is best known for his songwriting, stage, and session work for the Allman Brothers, Gov't Mule, and Dickey Betts as well as the songs he's written for The Allman Brothers, Gregg Allman, and Dicky Betts, Gov’t Mule, John Mayall, Delbert McClinton, Montgomery Gentry, Keith Whitley, Travis Tritt, The Oak Ridge Boys, Restless Heart, Ann Peebles, Dorothy Moore, and John Schneider.
“Well, I guess it would be that as a child one day I ran my hand across the keys of a piano and when I heard that first cord, that first sound, I knew that I wanted to learn more. So I just began playing the notes. I guess the whole first year I must have played only the black keys. The black keys were the first one's I heard and the interest grabbed me, it just happened by accident. I was hooked.” --Johnny NeelBorn in Wilmington, Delaware, Johnny Neel blind at birth cut his first single at the age of twelve, as Johnny Neel and The Shapes Of Soul. As an adult, the Johnny Neel Band had a strong following up and down the East Coast and released two well-received independent albums; “One Hot Night& “You Shoulda’ Been There”. Neel moved to Nashville, the premiere song writing city, in 1984. Where he immediately became recognized a session “A” studio player. Others began to notice Neel’s songwriting talent and decided to take advantage by recording his songs on their albums.
Neel decided to join the reunited Allman Brothers Band, immersing himself in a successful tour, which led to a number one AOR smash hit during the summer of 1990. Car radios all across America blasted “Good Clean Fun”, from the Seven Turns Album, co-written by Neel with Allman and Betts. The chart topping hit provided the reunited Allmans with their highest charting single since “Ramblin’ Man” fifteen years prior. Neel’s songs have been recorded by such artist’s as “Montgomery/Gentry, Delbert McClinton, John Mayall, John Louis Walker and many others…. Johnny Neel is a recipient of the “Life Time Achievment Award” from the 2012 Grammy’s with his work with the Allman Brothers.
During that same period of time the recordings were made, Neel also became a member of Blue Floyd, a premiere jam band with variations on the material of Pink Floyd. In addition to Neel, band members were comprised of Marc Ford (Black Crowes), Matt Abts (Gov’t Mule), Berry Oakley Jr. (OKB Band & Bloodline) and, the late Allen Woody (Gov’t Mule).
In 2012 Johnny is releasing his eighth solo effort titled “Every Kinda’ Blues”, this release has every kinda blues that you never heard before. This recording has been well received by the blues community and features two (LIVE) tracks with the Italian band W.I.N.D., as well as tracks that cover all variety of the blues. a man with boundless energy, Neel still manages to juggle studio work, local club gigs, road work and hit song writing, and somehow between the chaos maintains his sanity
You can’t teach soul. Johnny Neel ranks as one of the country’s most soulful, and versatile, players. Neel’s amalgamation of blues, funk, R & B, jazz, gospel, country, and reggae fuse into one indelible personal sound,.........
“They say that you can’t do it all; Hell, I’m trying to prove ‘em wrong.” – Johnny Neel
* Grammy nomination for keyboard work as an Allman Brothers Band member on the instrumental cut, “True Gravity” LP from the Seven Turns album
* ASCAP Country Award for “Take The Long Way Home” recorded by John Schneider
* BMI Citation Award as a member of The Allman Brothers Band
* Vocalist of The Year – 2001 Bands of Dixie Magazine (France) Readers Poll
Television / Movie / Video Appearances
* XXXS and OOOS (Movie)
* Good Clean Fun (Video) – MTV Unplugged
* CBS This Morning
* The Tonight Show
* Nashville Now
* Music City Tonight
* Volunteer Jam – TNN