Legendary drummer and JCM founder Jon Hiseman died in the early hours of Tuesday, 12th June 2018 in Sutton, England aged 73, leaving his wife, saxophonist and composer Barbara Thompson, his daughter, singer Ana Gracey and his son, financier Marcus Hiseman, along with four grandchildren.
The cause of death was complications of surgery that he underwent in May 2018 to remove a brain tumour.
“…he left a huge void in the lives of family, friends, fellow musicians and all those he had met and inspired during a lifetime of dedication to music.”
Extract from rock music critic and author Chris Welch’s Tribute to Jon Hiseman
In the last year of his life, Jon Hiseman formed JCM, a trio with the Colosseum members Clem Clempson, on guitar, and Mark Clarke, on bass. The group made an album, “Heroes,” that contained music written by former collaborators Hiseman had outlived, among them Jack Bruce, Allan Holdsworth, Dick Heckstall-Smith, Graham Bond and Ollie Halsall. Ironically, the album will become a tribute to Hiseman himself.
JCM began a tour in April 2018, but cancelled it as the brain tumour advanced. Clem and Mark would like to announce that in alignment with Jon’s wishes, JCM is movin’ on with Ralph Salmins on the drums.
The Beat Goes On
History of the Band
Jon Hiseman wrote:
“I was due to play a guitar festival in Germany in March ’17 with an old friend, Larry Coryell. I played with him in the early 70s in Wolfgang Dauners ET CETERA, and recorded the album “Knirsch”.
Gary Moore and I admired Larry’s 11th House albums and would play them when we were on tour.
A week before the festival gig, Larry died unexpectedly in New York. This was a big shock; we had only met up again the year before in Stuttgart at Wolfgang Dauners 80th birthday bash.
One month later Allan Holdsworth died.
Suddenly, I realised that I had lost most of the people who had believed in me and encouraged me to make my own music…
Mike Taylor, Graham Bond, Ollie Halsall, Jack Bruce, John Mole, Gary Moore, Dick Heckstall-Smith, Larry Coryell, Allan Holdsworth.
Photography by Michael Robert Williams
Gradually, it occurred to me that I should try to make an album featuring the songs and instrumentals that I associate with them all, the music that stayed in my mind through all the years. Each piece brings with it memories – some that make me laugh and others that make me feel anger to have lost their friendship and talent.
Clem Clempson was over in the studio working on my daughter Ana’s album and I mentioned the idea to him. He was very enthusiastic, especially when he learnt that I thought it should be a classic guitar trio with Mark Clarke on bass guitar and vocals. We were both friendly with Cozy Powell and, of course, Clem had great success with Steve Marriott and Greg Ridley in Humble Pie. It was clear that a “Heroes” album would not be short of things to play. We started to discuss the songs we could do and when Clem mentioned this to Colosseum’s German agent the whole situation got rapidly out of hand.
My cosy little plan for a nice ‘family’ album has turned into a full blown recording and touring operation.
The album is now available to buy on Amazon and iTunes and we are about to embark on a 30+ date European tour. I have no idea where this will all lead but we are certainly going to have fun – and it all keeps me fit physically and mentally.”
Jonh, April 2018