My name is John Spaller, I was born on February 18, 1946. I have a Ukrainian heritage – my father was born in Ukraine and immigrated to Canada at a very young age, and I as raised in a very Ukrainian based household. I have been a musician playing Ukrainian music for over 60 years.
I have always been interested in music, and come from a very musical family. As a child when we were at dances, I would listen to the music and study the guitar players fingers. Then I would go home and practice on my Uncle Matt Spaller's guitar. My parents, Milton and Rose bought me my first guitar in 1956.
In 1955, when I was 9 years old, I played my first booking. I played guitar with my Dad, who played violin. It was in Lake Audy for my Auntie Margaret's wedding. At that young age I also played for many dances at Providence school..
In 1965 I started playing guitar for the Trail Riders (Consisting of Leo Macsymach, Adam Krupa, Edmund Bilyk, Joe Rozedeba, and my brother Mel Spaller). In 1966 The Trail Riders recorded an LP. We also performed on CKX TV (Brandon) and CKOS TV (Yorkton) that year.
Over the years I've played with the Adam & Pat Krupa Orchestra (for 15 years). Peter Lamb, Frank Sacharko, Joe Swereda, Wally Yanchycki, Wally Maydaniuk and Ernie Citulsky.
Currently I play with Parkland Country (Wally Yanchycki, Julian Warwauk, Phil Wilk) and the Cook Shack Shakers (with Phil Wilk, Julian Warwaruk, and Hayden Hadway). We play for weddings, dances and at seniors homes. The Cook Shack Shakers have alse been the lead performance for both days of the Little Valley Jamboree in Erickson, MB for the last several years.