A Brief History of music according to john cansalsa

A well aged and experienced songwriter, sound engineer & producer from England, UK. 


in the beginning - there were valves

Interested in Electronics since age 4, John analysed the electronic sounds of films & TV - and wanted to join the BBC creative sound studio. At Age 8 using his Cassette Recorder birthday present he spliced recorded music & sounds to form his first abstract instrumental. 

He continued this fused passion creating strange instruments out of Valve record players, including a theremin made from an old Valve radio. It wasn’t until aged 10 when John's family bought a Piano that he started to learn some music theory. 

All of this lit the flame to want to write electronic songs even amidst the music from the likes of The Beatles, The Stones, Sweet, Cream, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zep, Pink Floyd, Marc Bolan, Deep Purple, Genesis, The Jacksons, Donna Summer & Disco, Boney M, Abba, David Bowie, Queen, The Sex Pistols, The Stranglers, Blondie & Polystyrene...


Tangerine Dream versus Kraftwerk & Gary Numan

Aged 16 in Post Punk 78' with his idol of Gary Numan's Tubeway Army in his head his true vocation nearly came to light after enrolling onto a Radio & TV Engineers college course. Where he was offered to build a Synthesiser Kit, unfortunately he couldn't afford to buy it. To get one he began playing Drums, Guitar & Bass in a mad-mix of local Punk, Rock, New-wave bands, and even a Reggae band - although that was more like bongo bashing than musical.

10cc versus Meatloaf versus Chuck Berry versus Shazam!

Eventually in 1983 amdist a myriad of synths, drum machines & electronic music gadgets, some of which he had built himself. John together with two others released their first Demo single as the Minimalist Electronic band called Shazam

Being based at the bottom end of Cornwall they were unique within the area so had a good following, but also completely unknown. Despite the gigs, and plugging on trips to London it was no surprise the record got absolutely nowhere. Only 500 were made as a demo distributed to AR departments all over the UK. Ironically it's now an expensive collectors item.

The highlight however was the opportunity of being on stage with Chuck Berry, 10cc & Meatloaf at a local concert - Penwith 83'. Sadly it was as part of the stage crew - but they got to meet them all and it was the best after party they had ever had! 


Songwriting Musician versus Engineer versus Producer versus Computer Programmer

With proceeds from the single the band purchased their own 8-Track recording studio branching into computer sequencing. During the mid 80's John's passion of Electronics, Sound Engineering & Production came to life collaborating with other artists on several studio projects across several different and ever expanding list of genres, including some local releases onto tape.

However with the new dawn of Computing being another core love, he decided to change his professional career. In the early 90's when his Electronics career with Cable & Wireless turned into a Computing Career John moved songwriting to the background.

35 Years a GHOST WRITER & A Family later

Working quietly by word of mouth for over 35 years with some interesting collaborations, John retired from his day job.

He now owns a very capable DAW based studio stocked with Native Instruments / Ableton / Avid / Universal Audio / Audient & Midas & SSL / DM10 / Console 1 / Neutron & Ozone / Genelec. These days he processes almost entirely ITB, but occasionally records acoustically OTB - for drums, vocals, large groups & synth reverbs albeit via a Digital X18 Mixer in a live room when some natural ambience is needed.

Projects to date have been varied & experimental to say the least. Gone were the early days of Teen Punk & Pop - that boat had well and truly sailed along with youthfulness a long time ago. Needless to say there is still no one fixed genre he has aligned with and has been comfortable creating any genre on request. Styles & tastes change but engineering basics don't, nor has John's love of Electronica from the age of 4.

Now with all the time in the World - John Restarted Self Publishing in 2018

 Still a lover of electronica soundscapes, now combining a lifetime of technical knowledge & musical experiences. This time round it is more experimental and backed with over 54 years of analytical listening to past trends, music & sound-scapes. Although now he has more time & flexibility to work on his favourite Electronica sub-genres:

New Age & Ambient - Salsa Electronica - Downtempo - Chill-out - Post Punk Pop - Indie Rock

Until the next extremely interesting or fantastically different collaboration opportunity comes along of course...


Now What?