John Pena

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by chang1988, Dec 11, 2001.

  1. John Pena became my favorite bassist since I listen to "Symbiosis" album of Simon Phillips, 3 tracks which he played for is very impressive bassline and in my personal thought, it's one of the best sound come from the bass I ever heard of.

    However, it's so hard to find any info about him, I only know that he also play for the band name "Karizma"
    Does anyone knows any further information about him?
  2. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Inactive

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings is a good resource. I remember John doing some nice work on a Brandon Fields' solo CD.
    jerry likes this.
  3. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    I remember John Pena from a show my kids used to watch on Nickelodean a number of years ago called "RoundHouse". Killer house band!!! John was the bassist. He also did a stint with Steve Lukather/Simon Phillips in a band called "Los Lobotomys".


    - Frank.
  4. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    WOW! A John Pena sighting here @TalkBass!

    I like Pena, too...I think Bass Player did a feature on him a few years ago(if interested, I'll dig it out; if you happen to know the month, that would help me in locating the magazine faster!). ;)

    Anyway, this is funny...
    You mention Simon Phillips' Symbiosis-
    ...the Symbiosis album I have(a LIVE one) has Anthony Jackson on bass.
    You mention Karizma-
    Both Karizma discs I have feature Abe Laboriel & Neil Stubenhaus.

    ...& I think the 'original' Los Lobotomys' bassist was Will Lee(?).
  5. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    JimK wrote:
    First I heard of that... I have their first (and perhaps only??) CD (some of the cuts: "Hero with a thousand eyes", "Never Walk Alone" & "Party in Simon's Pants"), and John is in the credits for all the bass parts.

    - Frank
  6. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I'm not sure; a friend of mine has a LL album from way back(late '80s?). It's an import & he bought it ONLY 'cause Vinnie Colaiuta plays on it...I recall a cover of Miles' "All Blues". I thought Will Lee was playing on that cd(?). You're probably right.
    Is that one of the cds you have?

    ***PUNCHING IN***
    I just did a search
    Two albums listed, Candyman & Los Lobotomys...the latter disc is the one I'm talking about. It's sez released in 2000...actually that's a re-issue date.
    Oh, yeah, Will Lee is listed as the Pena. ;)
  7. berklee46

    berklee46 Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2000
    Will Lee played on the original "Los Lobotomys" CD. It was a live disc from 1989....

    John Pena played on the 2nd Los Lobotomys CD called Candyman (It was also released as "Steve Lukather's Candyman").

    Other than Steve Lukather and David Garfield being in the band, there is nothing else similar between the 2 albums. The 1st is all instrumental, the 2nd is a hard-rock w/ vocals recording.
  9. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    Thanks berklee46 and JimK for clearing that up!

    The CD I was refering to WAS "Candyman". I didn't realize that this one was actually the 2nd CD by Los Lobotomys.

    - Frank.
  10. to Brad Johnson: is a very good site and it's really help, thanks for your suggestions :)
  11. bottomzone

    bottomzone Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2005
    John Pena is a beast!!! He was in the house band for the former Nickleodeon show Roundhouse. That band was killer!

    He's on many You Tube videos.
  12. Probably most people know John from this song by Tania Maria:

    He also made a CD called "Call it Grace" (2008).
  13. bottomzone

    bottomzone Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2005
    Yeah, I remember that Tania Maria project! I might even have that one! Here is a good interview with John:

    Interview - John Pena - For Bass Players Only

    His Call It Grace CD is very nice! Thanks for the Allmusic link. I had no idea how extensive John's discography is! It's not a shock-he is very versatile!
    Rudyboy98 likes this.
  14. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru..........

    Apr 11, 2006
    Out there!
    The first time I ever heard, and heard of, John was this song when I bought the The Real Tania Maria: Wild! CD out of the blue, back in 1985.

    Last edited: Feb 14, 2017
    jerry and ahc like this.
  15. gimmeagig

    gimmeagig Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2004
    Coeur D'Alene,Idaho
    He's been one of my favorite guys forever.
    jerry likes this.
  16. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    When I met Brandon I told him how much I dug Pena's playing on his albums.
  17. gimmeagig

    gimmeagig Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2004
    Coeur D'Alene,Idaho
    In the 80s I used to play in a Jazz Cafe in downtown Santa Cruz. In the afternoon 5 days a week. One day when Tanya Maria was playing in town, John Pena and Walfredo Reyes, the drummer stopped by. Our band was playing pretty hip stuff, some steps ahead, weather report, some lorber, spyro gyra... so they hung out and John ended up sitting in on Tune 88. That was so educational, I thought I was playing some OK stuff on that tune but he was so beyond me, not even funny.. I was playing a Sabre bass at the time and I never heard that bass sound so good. He's been one of my favorite bassists ever since.