Johnny Bacolas / Photo: Natalia Nikkola
|Birth name||Yiannis Sotiris Bacolas|
|Born||3 March 1969|
|Genres||Hard rock, grunge, electronica, world music|
|Occupations||Musician, producer, songwriter, audio engineer, videographer, editor|
|Instruments||Bass guitar, guitar, Greek bouzouki|
|Labels||Capitol, Timestyle Music|
|Associated acts||Sleze, Alice N' Chains, Second Coming, Darin Isaacs
The Crying Spell, Lotus Crush, Yianni Bacolas
Johnny Bacolas (Greek: Γιάννης Μπάkολας; classical transcription Yiannis Bacolas) born March 3, 1969, in Seattle, Washington, is a composer, musician, producer, and videographer. He is best known for his work with the post-grunge band Second Coming. He has also been a member of the bands Alice N' Chains (a precursor to Alice in Chains), The Crying Spell, and Lotus Crush.
At the age of 14, Bacolas started a rock band called Sleze with several other Shorewood High students, including his future longtime bandmate James Bergstrom. They auditioned several candidates to sing for them and eventually settled on Layne Staley, who attended Meadowdale High School. In 1985, Sleze began performing live at various high schools with Bacolas on guitar. They mostly played Slayer and Armored Saint covers. Eventually, they were joined by guitarist Nick Pollock with Bacolas switching to bass guitar and changed their name to Alice N' Chains. The group continued to tour throughout the Seattle area and recorded two demos before they broke up around 1987.
Staley later joined the band that eventually took the name Alice in Chains and became hugely successful. Throughout the rest of his career, Staley continued to stay in touch with Bacolas and the two of them shared an apartment during the mid-1990s. Bacolas was present at many of the meetings that dealt with Mad Season, which also included Mike McCready and John Baker Saunders.
Meanwhile, Bacolas continued working with James Bergstrom in another band called Second Coming. In early 1996 through Spring of 1997, the members of Second Coming wrote, produced, and financed an 8-song demo (which was produced by Kelly Gray and Dudley Taft). The band performed cover songs on the outskirts of Seattle under the moniker, F.T.A. to finance the demo. Once the recording was finished, the band dropped their cover act, and began performing solely as Second Coming. The band subsequently generated a massive buzz in the Seattle area performing their original songs. On May 9, 1998, Second Coming signed an exclusive recording agreement with Capitol Records Inc. Second Coming had three songs chart in Billboard's active-rock chart ("Soft" #9, "Vintage Eyes" #10, and "The Unknown Rider" #11). The band had one of its songs "The Unknown Rider" featured in the 1999 Bruce Willis film The Sixth Sense.
From 2004-2007, Bacolas focused on his production skills by apprenticing as a producer and audio engineer for multi-platinum producer/engineer Kelly Gray. During this time, in 2006, Bacolas helped start another band called The Crying Spell, which played "Man in the Box" with Live vocalist Ed Kowalczyk at the 2009 Layne Staley Tribute Concert. In 2007, Bacolas co-produced (along with Kelly Gray) pianist/vocalist Darin Isaacs' debut vocal album Here With Me Now. Bacolas is also the credited bass player for all songs featured on 'Here With Me Now,' as well as having co-written the title track with Darin Isaacs.
In early 2008, Bacolas partnered with electronica producer, Andrea Lonardo Martini (Emotive Sounds, Copenhagen, Denmark) to produce Trance and House remixes, primarily of songs he had prior song-writing and/or production involvement with. Martini and Bacolas produced and engineered one Trance remix from Isaacs' debut album titled, Without My Heart. By Spring 2008, "Without My Heart" became a most-requested song on one of Seattle's top-rated dance station C89.5 FM. Martini and Bacolas continue to collaborate on other remixes as of today. Also in 2008, Bacolas is credited for co-producing a track titled, "The Great Big Sleep" for Clive Barker's 2008 horror film, The Midnight Meat Train. Bacolas parted ways with The Crying Spell early in 2010 to focus on his songwriting, music productions, videography business and other endeavors with other recording artists.
In June 2011, Bacolas produced a track titled "Ophelia" by the Alexandroupolis, Greece-based group, INK. Bacolas makes a cameo appearance in the official music video.
In December 2011, Bacolas released a video for the Greek classic 'To Agalma' of which he produced and engineered the music and co-directed and produced the video. Bacolas is also credited as the bassist and keyboardist on the track. The project was an international collaboration, featuring several artists from Bacolas' hometown of Seattle, and well as well-known Greek vocalist Giorgos Sarris (formerly lead vocalist for Greek group Zigk Zagk) from Athens, Greece, and guitarist Josh Sulfaro, from Los Angeles, CA. To film the shots of vocalist, Giorgos Sarris in Athens, Greece, Bacolas partnered-up with Greek Director Sherif Francis.
|2008||Through Hell to Heaven
||The Crying Spell|
|2011||Half Light Morning
- "Johnny Bacolas Overview at Allmusic". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-10-02.
- "Lotus Crush at Reverbnation". Reverbnation.com. Retrieved 2011-10-16.
- Scanlon, Tom. "Music & nightlife | Alice in Chains singer's legacy lives on through music | Seattle Times Newspaper". Seattletimes.nwsource.com. Retrieved 2011-07-01.
- Official website
- Allmusic Guide / Johnny Bacolas