We had the good fortune of connecting with John Fluker and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi John, how do you think about risk?
I would say I’ve always been a risk taker. I guess the faith that I exercise may be interpreted as taking risks. Fresh out of college, I relocated to California from Michigan with not much money at all. I took the risk because I believed that I belonged in California and that if I could appear on Star Search it would help my career. ”
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
For me everything starts from the piano. Just last night I felt inspired and composed a new piano piece. Soon after, I was up dancing to it which led to singing and then creating a Gospel Choir Chorus. One thing lead to the next like dominos. I feel I’m most proud of my own compositions. It’s something the Lord gave me to shine in my own way and it touches and brings many people comfort. I’ve gotten to where I am today by being consistent, keeping the faith and not giving up. It wasn’t easy, but when you learn to embrace the journey, each step leads you closer with invaluable lessons you may not have learned, had you not taken the first step by faith. I remember when I left being musical director for Gladys Knight. I was drawn to serving in church. My roots were calling me. It was what I needed, to stay grounded and connected. The invaluable Lessons learned and friendships formed led me to the next level that God had for me. One important lesson I’ve learned along the way is to always treat people the way you want to be treated. That includes refraining from talking about people and in its place always offering encouragement, insight and expressing gratitude. What I want the world to know about me is that God gave me a message of peace. It’s expressed through my piano music, it’s shared when I go to Japan and minister through song, it’s felt from the love I have for family, including my little grand nephews. I miss how my father used to sit on the couch and listen to me play piano and say how comforting it was to him. Now the couch has been extended across cities and oceans, music to comfort any who will listen, especially during these uncertain times..
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Well, some of my favorite places to visit in Los Angeles include the Griffith Observatory. I love seeing the shows at the Samuel Oschin Planetarium and the healthy walks up to the site are filled with breathtaking views of the mountains and hills. Some of my favorite places to eat include Bayshore Fish & Grill on Foothill, Tatsu Ramen on Melrose, Roscoe’s on Gower, Penguin Fish & Chips on Pico and Dulan’s on Crenshaw. I love to see a good movie like the Arclight Cinema in Sherman Oaks or the Edwards Valencia Stadium 12 & IMAX. It’s always fun to people watch at places like The Grove, Universal City Walk or walking along Venice Beach. And since I love to dance, hitting a fun and lively spot like Oil Can Harry’s on a Saturday night is great with plenty of disco, R&B and Soul!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’m thankful that I grew up attending Friendship Baptist Church In Lansing, Michigan and learning so much from the musicians, choirs and soloists. I’ve gained so much from the experience that it’s hard to imagine how I may have survived without it. Also, my parents (Curtis E. Fluker and Laverne Fluker) knew what was best for me. Even when I didn’t feel like going to church or practicing my piano lessons, my parents knew how to be parents and always guided me.
Cindy Arguello, Alison Solis, LW Wilson.