John Brawn

My brother Robert and I were given a good quality guitar as a shared Christmas gift when I was a freshman in high school. Much to my embarrassment, my younger brother quickly became a much better guitarist than me, so I switched to bas guitar out of self defense. I played bass and occasionally piano with the high school choir at Good Sam UMC until my late 20s, excpet for the years I attended college in Anchorage Alaska.

I married a wonderful singer named Joy in 1990. We have two amazing children, one in college and one just out who introduced me to the excitement of being a marching band dad. I've continued to play bass with the praise band at Good Sam over most of the last 27 years or so.

In my current day job, I'm a network architect with AT&T. I started that gig 34 years ago at Hewlett-Packard and wound my way through the various divestitures as HP split into little pieces until landing here. I have more than a dozen patents in the US, UK, and Europe related to large enterprise networking, network security and anti-malware technologies.

I've known Joe for nearly 40 years, and had worked with Frank and Chad occasionally over the last 20 years, especially at men's retreats. It was a real pleasure to be asked to join Prodigal Sons in 2016.

10 Questions with John

Most of the boys were in the studio with Bill Hare today, getting the final tracks mastered for the new album. We caught up with John after the session to ask ten quick questions. Everyone was in good spirits because we're down to the last few steps (licensing, graphics, and pressing) before we have albums in our hands and ready to sell, download and steam!

1. What were your best/worst subjects in school?

My best subjects were math and all the sciences, especially physics. My worst subject was P.E. I hated the bullying that seemed to be pervasive in the macho competitive sports.

2. What is your favorite movie? 

Lately it is Interstellar, but for a long time before that it was Secondhand Lions. Both movies make me cry every time I see them, and make me think about them for days afterwards.

3. If you could be a super hero, what would be your one super power?

I would be a low key super hero with the ability to perfectly play any music I hear in my head on any instrument I have in my hands. It would be a thrill to be hyper-competent on a massive pipe organ. Music is what feelings sound like, so I'd also be able to perfectly convey feelings to people.

4. What's your favorite holiday?

Christmas, without a doubt. More than any other holiday this one means family to me. It is always preceded by great music, and it's generally followed by a week of vacation before returning to work.

5. What's your favorite place to eat?

I have such great memories of special meals with special friends at La Fondue in Saratoga.

6. What is the best advice you've been given? 

"The quality of life is predicated upon the decisions made prior to the crisis." Thank you Ernie Bringas of the Rip Chords! 

7. What's the last book you read? 

"Boomer", Star Watch book 3. Science Fiction is a guilty pleasure. The last book that made me really think was "Jesusgate: A History of Concealment Unraveled".

8. What is the best gift you've ever received? 

Every time one of my kids tells me he or she loves me is the best gift so far. The most influential physical gift may have been 1/2 of a guitar -- a gift my younger brother and I shared receipt of when I was in high school. His demonstrably better skills on that instrument led to my taking up bass guitar.

9. What is one thing you wish you'd known when you were younger?

I wish I'd known that the whip smart, good looking, fun-to-be-with kids in high school were just as lonely and insecure as I was.

10. What was the question you were hoping I'd ask?

"How soon will your book about going to college in Alaska be done?"