Art of the Song is Hosted and Produced by John & Viv
In addition to their work in radio, John & Viv are a performing songwriting duo and members of the blues/rock band, El Rito Rhythm Kings. Viv has an active creativity coaching practice, and John is featured as a keynote speaker delivering inspiring talks about creativity laced with entertaining and relevant live music.
Vivian, whose acting credits include Broadway and national television, got her first guitar for her 15th birthday. It came from a pawn shop in Toledo, Ohio. She has been producing music and theater events for 25 years.
Vivian was co-producer, writer and narrator for a 26 part television series about Buddhism for Mongolian National Television. These shows had the blessing of His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama, and were hosted by Richard Gere and Keanu Reeves.
She is active in the New Mexico film and television industry with recent roles in the ABC Family Network show, “Wildfire,” and the AMC new series, “Breaking Bad.”
Viv met John in their hometown of Taos, New Mexico, when she poured him a cup of coffee at a local diner. Their love of sharing music has won fans from all walks of life.
John Dillon has had a fascination with creativity all his life. He grew up in a Pennsylvania town that was settled by his Irish immigrant great-great-grandfather, whose son–John’s namesake–started a flower growing business that flourishes to this day.
Like all of us, John was very creative as a child, and as happens to some of us, his creativity faded during his pre-adolescent years. Fortunately however, he was given a guitar at age 13 and he learned to express himself by improvising the blues with his teenage band-mates. A major turning point came in his late teens when he discovered first-hand the power of music (creative process) to build community and transcend physical limitations.
Pack on back and guitar in hand, John spent a year cris-crossing the US absorbing the landscape and culture of our great country. Eventually he settled in Taos, New Mexico.
John was so passionate about guitars that, in his mid-twenties, he learned how to build them. Over the course of three decades, he built over 80 acoustic guitars, including custom instruments for Steve Earle, Tish Hinojosa, Trisha Yearwood and the Mavericks. Through guitar making John learned that the true creative process combines both right and left brain thinking–a blending of art and craft.
A twelve year stint in the family floral business gave John the opportunity to apply his creativity to marketing and business. He started a division of the company that sold plants to mass market outlets, and a program for importing directly from the flower auction in Aalsmeer, Holland.
Throughout John’s varied occupational endeavors, songwriting and music performance continued to be vital forms of creative expression. He recorded his first solo CD, Piece of Paradise, in 1998. His second release, Callin’ Me Home, which chronicled his return to the West, received 7 New Mexico Music Award nominations.
In 2003, John and his wife Viv Nesbitt created Art of the Song Creativity Radio which is now heard every week on over 150 public and community stations across the country.
The Standing “O” Project started as an idea that came to John in the shower and demonstrates the essence of the creative process as applied to business. The project synthesizes the need for many musicians to afford health insurance with Art of the Song’s vast archive of music and interviews, into a unique membership website that “gives back.”
Creativity and the entrepreneurial spirit are indeed alive and well in John Dillon’s life.