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John Bartus: News

Clarence Clemons jams with John! - July 18, 2007

Friday the 13th (of July) was a lucky day for John, Dave, and Glenn, as the Big Man himself, Mr. Clarence Clemons, sat in on his saxophone for two long incredible sets at Dockside! Said John, "It was an honor to jam with the Big Man, even more so that he wanted to come back and play another set with the band!" Look for photos on the Photo page!

Summer in the Keys... - July 6, 2007

...sweating profusely, dodging hurricanes (hopefully, few to none). New photos and bio information on Dave and Glenn can be found, and some new music will be uploaded shortly. Be sure to follow us around the islands on the Calendar page. Work continues on the next CD, titled (at this point) End of the Road. Be sure to look us up if your summer plans bring you to the Keys!

John Bartus profiled in Chicago Sun-Times - April 23, 2007

Dave Hoekstra, columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times, paid a visit to the Keys to sit and chat with yours truly. (There was also something about Da Bears being in the Super Bowl.) I've posted the text as well as the link to the Sun-Times article on the Press page. Check it out! And special thanks to Dave Hoekstra for taking the time to listen to Keys Disease and coordinating the interview!

Spend New Year's Eve with John Bartus at the Key Colony Inn - December 12, 2006

John Bartus, with Dave Howell and Glenn Faast, will perform a New Year's Eve show at the beautiful Pavilion located at the Key Colony Inn on Key Colony Beach. It'll be a real fun rockin' time, and if you're anywhere near the Keys, we'd love to see you there. We'll be playing lots of stuff, including my tunes and our tribute to Pink Floyd. For info & reervations, call (305) 743-0100.

Bartus Concert at City Amphitheater Raises Nearly $3000 for Rotary - December 12, 2006

The First Annual Thanksgiving Weekend End Of Hurricane Season Community Park Dedication & John Bartus Birthday Concert, held November 24, 2006 at Marathon's Community Park Amphitheater, raised nearly $3000 for the Marathon Rotary Club. We had a great time and raised money for all the good things our local Rotary Club does in the Keys. I'll be posting some pix real soon -- stay tuned!


John's KEYS DISEASE CD has been officially re-released, and there is a limited time sale on both the KEYS DISEASE and LIVE FROM THE FLORIDA KEYS CDs through the CDBABY.COM website. Both CDs will be on sale for just $11.95 for a limited time, and John will be doing a media tour and PR campaign to promote the re-release and the end (for now, at least) of his political career due to term limits. In the meantime, why not head on down to the islands and catch John performing live with David Howell around the Midddle Keys? Come on down, the weather and water are great, and the local seafood and refreshing beverages are certainly abundant!

Bash pics online; summer news - July 19, 2006

Well... I finally got some photos from this year's Bash at the Bridge uploaded! These pics were taken by a very talented photographer and fellow Marathon resident Larry Benvenuti. Larry also shot the photo that was on the cover of the Velvet Elvis cassette back in '95, and I'm grateful to be able to post these photos.

Currently, we're enjoying the heat and humidity of summer in the Keys. The fishing and diving are great right now, so come on down.

My studio is almost back together, and I'll be dragging Dave out of the heat and into the studio for the recording of the next CD. I've got lots of songs, and now I think I've got some time to put them down on tape (disk now; old habits die hard). I'll keep you posted on the progress. Check out the new pics, and don't forget the free downloads on the Music page!

Bartus to headline July 4th in Marathon! - June 22, 2006

John Bartus with David Howell will headline this year's July 4th celebration in Marathon (Florida Keys) at Sombrero Beach (approx. 5:30 PM). The Florida Straits Band and Johnny Maddox & the Fantasy Band will round out the day's live performances, which will be capped by the evening's SkyConcert, an impressive fireworks display choreographed to patriotic music. The event is Marathon's biggest community celebration, and live perofrmances start after the opening ceremonies at noon.

June 2006 Update - Bash 2006 pics to be posted soon! - June 4, 2006

Hello, all -- it's been awhile since the last update, but here's the latest:

I've recently started working with an incredibly talented keyboardist named David Howell. David just moved back to Marathon permanently after working with just about everyone under the sun. Dave and I have worked together in the past, and we've known each other forever -- we're calling it a musical partnership 20 years in the making! Dave will be helping out with keyboard and production duties on my upcoming CD. My studio will be put back together starting later this week, and I can't wait to get started!

Dave was instrumental in putting a band together for my appearance at this year's Bash at the Bridge, where I was the concert host and we performed all three nights. Kansas, Rick Derringer, Mark Farner, Edgar Winter, Cosmo, and Alto Reed were the headliners for the three day festival, and it was a real kick to be featured alongside these great musicians and bands. I'll upload photos soon.

And, finally, my political career is over for now, as my term as Mayor and City Council Member ended April 25th. The six years I served were an incredible experience, and somewhere in there a book is waiting to come out. If you get to the islands this summer, look me up! We'll share a tropical drink and hopefully a great time! Ciao for now!

Still Mayor for now; new CD & Bash news - April 3, 2006

Well, the City Council election is history, but there's a runoff election for the seat I hold... so I'm still Mayor until April 25. After that, I should finally have the time for...

RECORDING MY NEW CD!!!! I already have at least 12 songs to record, and I just need the time to get my studio back into shape and start laying down tracks. I can't wait!

This year's Bash at the Bridge (to be held at our city's new amphitheater) will feature some great acts, and yours truly is on the bill all three nights. Those three nights are May 18-20, 2006. More details, including Ticketmaster info, will follow soon.

Hurricane Season 2005 update - November 20, 2005

Being Mayor of a town that’s hit by a hurricane is bad enough. Being Mayor of a town that’s been impacted by four in one year – that’s almost unthinkable! But it happened in 2005, with Wilma saving the worst for last. Here’s the quick rundown on this year’s storms:

Dennis: a bit of wind, downed trees and branches everywhere, some minor structural damage.

Katrina: wasn’t supposed to come to the Keys; made a drastic turn overnight and blew through before wreaking total havoc on New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. Tornado came way too close to my house and one of our shops, destroying fences and signs and damaging several less fortunate buildings in its path. It is not in the least bit fun to be awakened by a tornado going past your house at 4:00 a.m.

Rita: Some wind, but a surprising amount of oceanside storm surge, which was compounded by the astronomical high tides. Two feet of water under my house; some flooded buildings, little wind damage.

Wilma: worst wind event of the season with gusts well over 100 mph in the Keys. And just when we all thought the storm was over, in comes the bayside storm surge: up to 10 feet in the lower and middle Keys. Marathon was totally inundated in several areas; the airport was totally flooded; the bay overran neighborhoods and businesses, going over U.S. 1 and flowing out into the oceanside. In Marathon alone, 1200 homes sustained damage, thousands of cars were totaled, marinas and docks were devastated, many businesses were totally destroyed. Several building and vehicle fires started after power was restored to buildings previously flooded with salt water. One structure fire occurred during the height of the storm surge, and city firefighters used jet skis to stretch the hose from hydrant to fire. The beautiful waterfront dock that’s in the photo in the upper left corner of my website is no more, a victim of Wilma’s storm surge. The human need after this storm continues to be met on a daily basis, and recovery will take months, if not years. Compared with what Wilma did to Cancun and the Yucatan, we were lucky.

This is why I haven’t had the time to update this site as much as necessary. Official duties have pre-empted my musical pursuits as storm after storm rolled across our islands. Hurricane season 2005 is, mercifully, winding down, and I hope to spend a little more time with music in the coming year. Happy Thanksgiving, and best wishes for a joyous holiday season.


CD Sales to benefit Katrina victims - September 1, 2005

Florida Keys-based singer/songwriter and Marathon Mayor John Bartus has just announced that ALL of his proceeds from CD sales at his website will be donated to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf Coast. From now until at least October 1, 2005, 100% of all money that John would have collected from sales of his "Keys Disease" and "Live From The Florida Keys" CDs will go directly to the American Red Cross to help storm victims in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.

"Here in the Keys, we got a little taste of the wrath of Katrina, but it's nothing close to the devastation wreaked on the Gulf Coast," Bartus said. "Whatever we can do to help those people who have lost everything is part of our responsibility to our neighbors."

To help out, just click on the "Buy The CD - Click Here" graphic above, and choose one or both CDs. Enjoy some Florida Keys music and help out Katrina victims at the same time.

JB Published in Acoustic Guitar magazine! - July 27, 2005

John's article, "How To Record a Live CD," is a feature article in the September issue of Acoustic Guitar magazine! For all those visiting the website from the magazine, welcome! And for those unfamiliar with the magazine, check out their website at

Bash Photos Uploaded! - May 30, 2005

There are some cool new photos of yours truly at the 2005 Bash at the Bridge, on Chaplin Field at the world-famous Seven Mile Bridge. These photos were taken by Michelle Pinkus, daughter of one of my fellow City Council members. Over 7,000 people jammed the field for this two-day event that raised a lot of money for the Rotary Scholarship Fund.

Bartus to play Bash! - April 30, 2005

John Bartus was selected as one of the featured artists to play at the 2005 "Bash at the Bridge" along with Rick Derringer, Edgar Winter, 38 Special, Jen, and Johnny Maddox. John, Jen, and 38 Special play the Saturday night "Main Event" at Chaplin Field on Knight's Key, at the base of the historic Seven Mile Bridge. For more information, go to

Bartus selected Mayor for final year - March 30, 2005

John Bartus was selected for a second term as Mayor for the city of Marathon by his fellow City Council members at their meeting on March 8, 2005. John will "term-limit" out of office in March of 2006, so he will serve his final year as Mayor. Out of Bartus' 6 years on Council, three years will have been served as Vice Mayor, and two as Mayor.

BONUS -- FREE DOWNLOADS! - January 23, 2005

As a way of saying thanks, I've posted two songs (from the old Velvet Elvis cassette) available as free downloads (as well as streaming audio). Just go to the Music page and check 'em out!

STREAMING AUDIO ADDED! - January 23, 2005

Streaming audio of all JB original songs from both the KEYS DISEASE and LIVE... CDs are now online -- full length. Click on the Music page and enjoy!

JB named Best Entertainer - January 10, 2005

Thanks to all the fans who voted John Bartus Best Entertainer in the recent People's Choice Awards for WAVK & WWWK Radio Stations. (John is a multiple winner of this award.)

NEW WEBSITE! - January 10, 2005

It's up and running! The new website is online, with features the old one couldn't match. STREAMING AUDIO COMING SOON!! (Until then, check out Take some time, look around, and enjoy.

LIVE CD RELEASED!!! - July 7, 2004

IT'S OUT!!! John has released a new acoustic Live CD, titled "Live From The Florida Keys." Click on the link on the "Buy" page to hear audio clips and purchase securely online!!

JB on iTunes!!! - May 18, 2004

All songs from the Keys Disease CD are available as digital downloads on Apple's iTunes website!

Live CD Out Soon!!! - May 18, 2004

John is set to release a new acoustic Live CD, recorded on two nights (March 1 & 2) at the legendary Hurricane nightclub in Marathon! Stay tuned to this site for details, including the CD release party and links to CD Baby for online purchases.

Songs for new CD - April 8, 2004

John has been in the studio working on a new CD. Some of the new material has been heard in John's recent live sets, and some tentative titles are:
Vegas Town
End of the Road
Brand New Day
We'll All Be Free
We're Cruisin' (The Day Tripper Song)
Coconut People (!)
Wasted Days
From This Day On
As of yet, there isn't even a working title for the CD. Check back for updated information!
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