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John with Willie Nelson circa 1985

JOHN VOCI passed away from cancer on April 5, 2012. John was my friend for over thirty years. He was a comedy writer, a songwriter, a composer and a superb musician. Music was John's passion, and in his lifetime he composed and recorded over a hundred songs.

Over the years I asked--practically begged--him to publish a CD of his music. More than once he would think about it, pause, and finally respond "No." Something always held him back. A few months ago, as his illness entered its final stage, I asked him again and after the expected pause he said "Okay."

John generally sang and accompanied himself on piano. There is an infinitely sad timbre to his voice that recalls Hank Williams at his lowest, which is to say, at his best.

One track, "Victor's Big Song," is a Voci composition performed by the legendary folk singer, Dave Van Ronk. John's own version features a rollicking piano accompaniment. He was amazed at how Dave was able to slow it down, perform a simple but flawless guitar background, and, in John's estimation, vastly improve it.

In addition to his extraordinary talent, John Voci was one of the kindest and most generous people I have ever had the privilege to call my friend. He was extremely intelligent and well-read, and used music as a teaching tool, often working with special needs children.

The two CDs above are scheduled for release next year. In the meantime, click on the sample songs and enjoy John at his best.

The cover of the "John Voci Sings Some More Sad Songs" CD is the last photograph taken of John. It was his 61st birthday, and less than six months later he was gone. Though the onset of illness is evident, the mischief in his eyes and the warmth in his smile, denoting a good heart, always remained intact.

Sleep well, old friend. No more sad songs.

--Brian Anthony











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