John Sund was born in Copenhagen. He is a self-taught guitarist, composer, arranger and producer.
Main debut at age 18 with the Danish Radio Big Band in a work by pianist Thomas Clausen and with Palle Mikkelborg as a conductor.
He received the Jacob Gade’s Grant as one of the first “rhythmic musicians” (which is normally reserved for classical musicians) for his extraordinary talent and Danish jazz reviewer, Boris Rabinowitsch, described him as a discovery of ‘Ørsted Pedersen’ske’ (NHØP) dimensions, reviewing his debut at Montmartre, Copenhagen.
He has since then appeared and recorded in countless context – including the Danish Radio Jazz Group, Danish Radio Workshop Group / Palle Mikkelborg, Thomas Clausen groups, Creme Fraiche Big Band, Debbie Cameron, Vincent Nilsson, Lelo Nika, Ben Besiakov, Bo Stief, Tim Hagans, the south Indian musicians Ganesh & Kumaresh, Shashank Subramaniam, Palestinian oud player Bilal Irshed and the Somali singer Mariam Mursal.
John has toured most parts of the world. From 2005 to 2010 he visited china four times, where he was playing festivals and clubs (2005 and 2007) – touring with his band Acoustic Sense around different universities playing for students (2009) and in 2010 they performed at the EXPO world exhibition and Seaside Festival.
His own working groups includes: Acoustic Sense (formed 2002), with John Ehde (cello), Bent Clausen (vibraphone), Morten Lundsby (contrabass) and Yohanier Ramon (percussion) and World On A String (formed 2003), with Bjarke Falgren (violin/co-leader), Morten Lundsby (bass) and Mirwais Fedai (tabla). Works also as a freelance musician in many different contexts. In addition, he regularly dives into projects of a larger scale, such as recent projects like Acoustic Sense in a collaboration with the Bulgarian inspired vocal ensemble GLAS entitled Reaching Out or composing works of a larger scale for different classical constellations. Recent projects includes SUND● SABRI● ROSE● FEDAI, with the north indian sarangi player Kamal Sabri, Danish classical singer Rose Svastha and the young tabla player Mirwais Fedai, world-music ensemble Global Tunes led by the Palestinian oud player Bilal Irshed, a trio collaboration with saxophonist Morten Carlsen and Cuban percussionist Yohan Ramon. Moreover working in the studio with Danish/British prog. rock king Robin Taylor, collaborations with “roots percussionist” Sylvester Agbedoglo from Togo and the exiting duo Duometric Events with the imaginative ghanian percussionist Ayi Solomon – to name a few.
John Sund musical work moves in the borderland between jazz and world music with influences from classical music and is always in a constant search for new expressions and directions. Although his main instrument undoubtedly is the guitar, he is also more than eligible on the mandolin, electric bass and ukulele.
John’s compositional output consists predominantly of a multitude of major and minor compositions for his own groups, but he has also contributed to other artists / CD releases, including Lelo Nika, Bilal Irshed and Ayi Solomon. He has written major works for ensembles such as the Danish Radio Big Band, Danish Radio Workshop Group, Bilal Irshed & Global Tunes and Copenhagen Art Ensemble. His work also includes compositions for classical artists, both soloists and ensembles, seeking to explore more unusual lineups including works such as: Concert for Organ & Two Saxophones, “The Explorer” for solo cello, Concert for Organ & Cello, “Two in One” for double-bass and Voice… etc.
John Sund & Acoustic Sense – New Gems (2003), World On A String (self-titled) (2004) and John Sund – The Open Road (2012), was nominated by the Danish Music Awards in the category “Best Cross-over CD of the year.”
Selected discography (as a soloist)
John Sund & The Danish Radio Big Band – “Fusion Symphony” (Olufsen Records – 1995)
Special Venture – “Special Venture” (Inter Music – 1999)
John Sund & Acoustic Sense – “New Gems” (Cope Records – 2003)
World On A String – “World On A String” (Cope Records 2004)
Special Venture – “Twice” (Gateway Records – 2007)
World On A String – “Second Outlet” (Calibrated – 2009)
Acoustic Sense – “Absorption” (Gateway 2010)
John Sund – “The Open Road – A Travelogue In Four Parts” (Exlibris / Storyville 2011)
Sund ● Shashank ● Phalgun – Here & Now (Gateway 2012)
Acoustic Sense & Glass – “Reaching Out” (Gateway Music – 2014)
John Sund & Acoustic Sense – “Unfolded” (Gateway Music – 2020)