I had the most amazing time performing this past weekend in Bend. John’s Songwriter Series is one of my favorite shows to play because it’s so sweet and intimate, the sound is fantastic and the audience is warm and generous. I feel like part of the family when I come to Bend. Thank you, John, for always being the consummate host and for reminding me why music matters. Love, ESR
I had the great pleasure of performing in John's home and it's an experience I won't soon (or ever!) forget. John comes from a place of having done this for a while (and that's apparent in his attention to detail) but what struck me the most is the many ways he illustrates that what he does is an act of love. It's apparent in the photos he prints for the performers of their loved ones to adorn the guest room, in the generosity he shows both artist and guest, and all he has done to ensure that musicians have everything they need to deliver their craft to its utmost potential. Thank you John for all you do, and thank you for believing in the power and importance of music. It was an absolute honor and an absolute joy to perform in your home.
John Cook is a real gem and an amazingly generous and competent supporter of the arts. I would have to echo some of the sentiments here in this guest book. Namely, if only more John Cooks existed in this world....... The arts feed our souls and connect us in meaningful ways, give us hope, remind us of beauty. As an artist, I feel I am merely on the other side of this very same coin. But in order to make it possible for musicians (and all artists) to share their gifts and for live performance reciprocity to flourish, one needs a loving gardener who tills the flower bed so to speak. John Cook is that gardener, creating an amazing experience for both artists and audience with love and attention to detail. Thank you!!!
If every town had a music lover like John hosting house concerts, the world would be a better place. The community John has built through his listening room is exactly what Bend needs. John's attention to detail makes a great house show and gives artists exactly what they require to execute a grand performance....even after the unspeakable drama of speed-recovering from a flooded basement and stroke (!!), John's "Show must go on" attitude was prime and positive. Thank you, John-- I loved stripping for your guests and will dance again for you in a heartbeat.
I’ve been a working and touring musician since 1997....as a performer, it is an extreme pleasure to walk into a venue, especially a house concert venue, and be greeted as though I am a prodigal daughter. Welcomed home and provided for. His attention to detail to insure that the audience has a great experience (from his roster of excellent songwriters and storytellers to he idea that the listeners deserve comfy chairs) and his attention to our experience (food, comfy bed, great sound system, wonderful conversation)....in short, I hope to return really really soon. Thank you for valuing me as an artist and musician and for the incredible support.
Wow! Words can not do justice expressing the intimate experience of listening to singer/songwriter/musicians telling their stories through music. Hearing the artist's history, message behind their music, their personal achievements/struggles connects you to their music like no other experience....at least for me! John's home is the perfect setting to enjoy these few special hours of music and comradery amongst others who enjoy and appreciate music and the immense work/life experience which goes into creating it.
John has created what feels like a beautiful small listening theater in his basement. So much thought and kindness has been put into creating space for musicians and listeners, what a magical place.
John's artistic discernment, capacity for organizing and just flat out generosity are why his series is a STANDOUT among house concerts. There's something both attentive and effortless in what John does to make his guests feel comfortable - both performers And concertgoers. I'm grateful to this man for what he has created and given to the songwriting community -- and of course, to the community of Bend. Big thanks buddy!
“In the history of art, arts patronage refers to the support that kings, popes, and others have provided to artists.”
From the soft beds and the food in the artists quarters, to the appreciative audiences, to the warm friendship, your support and love of the arts and artists is clear.
Reading through the comments on this page reveals the magnitude of the love and appreciation of you.
Because of you, the world of the arts is stronger and more vibrant.
John, you are a true patron of the arts.
Thank you, my friend.
I've been thinking about putting off writing this entry. It's only because I don't have the words to express my gratitude to John and his dedication to music and musicians. This was by far my best house concert ever and it was the highlight of my tour. John treats musicians with the utmost respect and appreciation. The audience was intimately attentive and yet so wonderfully engaged. The space here is nothing short of miraculous. I'm honored to have been included and hope to return as soon as I'm able. Thank you all so much for an incredible and unforgettable experience!
John Cook has refined the art of hosting a concert for a traveling musician. Really, I don't think he could do a better job. When I arrived at John's place he made me feel so welcome and celebrated, even meeting me in town to caravan me to the house so I didn't get lost. The way he curated the experience for his guests was just as attentive, and everyone felt connected and ready for the show by the time it began. I heard whispers of appreciation spreading around the room, as each attendee noted what a special setting John had carefully created: Brightly painted guitars decorating the theater space and stained glass hanging in the windows to let the light flood through in beautiful colors. Prior to coming I had been working up my keyboard chops again and when I arrived John had provided my favourite model of keyboard to perform on! I felt like royalty. Thank you, John
This was a night for the books! John made us feel so welcome and supported from the moment we arrived til the moment we pulled out of the driveway. John's home/venue is stunning, but it was the attention to little details that really made the experience so unique and memorable. Fresh flowers, books/music to browse through, various instruments to play, stocked fridges, etc. The best part: John had a framed photo of my wife waiting for me when I walked into the artist bedroom, which was such a thoughtful gesture; it made me tear up! Since my guitarist/producer and I flew in for this show, we were only able to bring limited gear, but every technical need was taken care of. The room sounded great and the crowd was so friendly and attentive. John really cares about his guests and artists and is doing such a wonderful thing to keep songwriters and original music afloat in this challenging industry. What's more, it was inspiring getting to know more about John's life and how he has been able to come out some pretty thick adversity with such a compassionate and positive outlook. I couldn't be more grateful that he bent his "must see artist play live before booking" rule for me. Can't wait to visit Bend again!
What a night!!! The audience was with us from the first not to the last!!! Smiles, singing, laughing, crying! John made us so at home and took great care of us. The sound was even awesome!! Thanks John!!!
I had an amazing time performing in John's (and his brothers) space. Wow what a beautiful evening with such warm and welcoming guests. Ive done a lot of house concerts in my past and this one was one of my favorites. Great sounding system to play through too. Thanks for hosting me John. I look forward to coming back one day. Your love for live music is appreciated and thank you for holding a space for all of us to enjoy.
John! I felt your warm Texas welcome as soon as I arrived. How fun to experience just a little bit of TX in Bend. Thank you (and Jim too) for inviting me to your new home and concert space. I won't soon forget all the rainbows on my drive peeking through the rain and sun and then hanging there right outside your window overlooking town. Your introduction and warmth throughout the night gave us all an invitation to tune in and let the music, laughter, and connection happen. Thank you for inviting me to take part in your series. Yes!!
John, you've utterly spoiled us all! Playing your house concert was a truly magical experience. You are the consummate host and I am so grateful that you opened your home to me and everyone to create a transcendent night of music. It's healing. It gives me hope. You're the best, and your audience and community in Bend is amazing!
There are moments in your life that are truly transformative...where everything you thought you knew changes, your whole being coalesces around a new truth, and your path gently shifts to accommodate an opening door you never imagined. The Lucky Nows (Jen Cass & Eric Janetsky) had just such a moment at John Cook's place. From John's overflowing kindness and hospitality, to the truly perfect performance space, to the adoring and attentive guests, to the mind and life altering beauty of Bend itself: we are forever changed. And we will be back. And we just might stay forever. And we couldn't begin to find enough words to express our heartfelt thanks for giving us this unforgettable experience. So much love for you, John Cook. So much love.
Having played House Concerts in nearly every State and Europe as well, my point of reference is pretty broad. John does an outstanding job in all respects. Kind, engaged and very lovely folks in a beautiful home in a gorgeous setting with excellent accommodations and outstanding food to top it all off! I am so honored and happy for the opportunity to be part of Songwriter Series House Concerts. John and his brother Jim are wonderful, enthusiastic, generous supporters of the music and make everyone feel right at home. We surely did! Thank you, my friends, and lots of love.
John was kind enough to accommodate me for an extra show on my annual spring tour of the Pacific Northwest, and I quickly knew I was in the Carnegie Hall of Bend from the moment I walked in. The food table was a work of art. The performance space was perfect for listening, and John couldn't have been more gracious, welcoming, and attentive. If a singer/songwriter ever wonders how and why he/she chose this unconventional "occupation", the Songwriter Series is a reminder that there couldn't be a better job in the world. Thanks John!
John, We had such a great time at your series! The audience was really wonderful and the setting you have created, the view, your generous hospitality, everything was perfect. I’m so happy were able to reconnect after all these years since meeting you in Texas. We look forward to returning anytime you will have us! Keep A Song In Your Heart…