Most people will know John through his acting career but he is also a talented singer/songwriter too!
John taught himself to play drums and guitar and was the lead singer of the Heavy Metal Kids! John also writes his own songs.
In November 2014 John released a single, 'Wild One' with female rock group JoanovArc (see below). Available with the download on itunes comes the song 'Saturday Night' penned and performed by John!
Johnny Altman and JOANovARC ‘Wild One’ Xmas single! Available to download NOW!!!!
Released November 2014
Click the You Tube Logo below to watch the video!
JOANovARC have performed worldwide – in the USA, Mediterranean, the Caribbean and have extensively toured Europe. They have performed at the Harley Davidson European Biker Festivals in Austria, Rome, Slovakia, France, Germany Army bases, Holland tours, Israel Red Sea resort, cruise ships in the Baltic sea and have electrified audiences in the UK with venues including the London Astoria; Cafe de Paris; the Garage; Barfly and the O2 Indigo. The girls have played at festivals including Florida Music Festival, Rhythms of the World, Namfest, Fordham Festival, Brighton Pride, Go Go Festival, Cambridge Rock, Cock Rock Festival, L Fest, BMF Biker Festival Peterbough arena and many more. They have also supported and worked with Slade, Girl School, Top loader, Marillion, Adam Ant, Bad Company and John Altman aka ‘Nick Cotton’ from Eastenders.
The Heavy Metal Kids line up with John Altman
'Uncontrollable'!! Play Loud!!
John performing with the Heavy Metal Kids at the 100 Club, London
In the beginning… there was Mickey Waller, Ronnie Thomas, Keith Boyce, Gary Holton and Cosmo… a gang of boisterous boys from South London and the East End. It was late 1972…
After a gruelling apprenticeship at the legendary Speakeasy Club, THE musicians' watering hole run by co-manager Laurie O'Leary, the boys were spotted by 60's icon Dave Dee, then head of A&R at the new London branch of Atlantic Records.
Around this time Cosmo left the band for a while and was replaced by Barry Paul on Guitar. Barry stayed until they signed with Atlantic but then decided to leave the band. The band then recruited Danny Peyronel on Keyboards.
Armed with a world-wide record contract with the home of Led Zeppelin and Aretha Franklin, in January '74 they went into London's Olympic Studios to record their first album, HEAVY METAL KIDS, with Dave Dee as producer.
They toured Britain and the continent to exhaustion, establishing their brand of rebellious, raucous rock 'n' roll… inspiring a generation of other rebels and setting the stage for an all-out revolution that would change the face of popular music only three years later. They appeared in 'The Old Grey Whistle Test' on the BBC, broke every record there was to break at London's Marquee, did Reading Festival (as they did every single year they were around) and just played, played, played…
At this point Mickey Waller left the band to join Steve Marriott's All-Stars and Cosmo rejoined the band.
In January '75, the lads went in to Island's Basing Street Studios, to record ANVIL CHORUS, this time with producer Andy Johns. After recording the second album the lads finally hit the US on a whirlwind tour with the likes of Alice Cooper, KISS and Rush.True to form, the tour was full of adventure! They got kicked off the KISS portion, after Gary and Danny were spotted rolling with laughter on the side of the stage at the sight of Gene Simmon's hair catching fire while doing his 'fire-swallowing' routine.
Back in the UK, and after a tour of France, Germany and Scotland, Danny left to join UFO. Cosmo then found keyboard player John Sinclair, from The Jackie Lynton Band, to take his place. In an age of few truly rockin' keyboard players, he'd made an impression when Jackie played the Speakeasy. Manager Ricki Farr then took the band away from Atlantic and had them sign to Mickie Most's RAK Records. Produced by the legendary Mickie himself, they recorded a third album, KITSCH. Cosmo was gone and Guitarist Barry Paul had rejoined the band.
More of the usual gruelling touring followed, peppered with a ton of TV appearances both in Britain and the continent. The RAK period was coming to a close and John would be the next to go, on his way to Uriah Heep. Guitarist Jay Williams was brought in to complete what was to be the last formation and record the single 'Delirious', before the Heavy Metal Kids' long tea-break started... Their cult status has grown over the years, around the undeniable influence they had on the birth of the punk movement and the new wave of british heavy metal… many claim they were the trigger for so much that came in their wake. A good look at today's bands from both sides of the Atlantic is enough to support this claim.
In 2003 Ronnie, Danny and Keith, the surviving heart and song-writing core of the HEAVY METAL KIDS, called time on their 26-year teabreak, and along with power-house guitarists Marco Guarnerio and Marco Barusso, recorded a walloping great album, "HIT THE RIGHT BUTTON". This line-up toured in the UK and Europe, and featured in several articles in Classic Rock Magazine, such as this one from October 2003.
Various line-up changes followed, including the return of Cosmo and new boy Justin McConville on Guitar and Vocals and they even had a stint with John Altman (Nasty Nick from EastEnders no less!) on Vocals. In 2012, as they set out on tour with rock legends UFO, Ronnie Garrity of Joe Elliott's Down 'N' Outz took over from Ronnie Thomas on bass duties, and also in 2011 Phil Lewis of LA Guns guested on vocals. Singer Paul Manzi was announced in 2013 as a full-time member of HMK, and sung his first gig with the Kids that August at Merton Manor.
Rock n Roll!!!!!!
The Diamond, Sutton, 25 March 2011
John at his menacing best in York band’s music video
He’s best known for playing one of British soap’s legendary bad guys – now John Altman is starring in the video for a York band’s latest single.
Cult actor John will soon return to EastEnders to take up his mantle as the lying, murdering, mum-baiting ‘Nasty’ Nick Cotton.
But on his way to Albert Square he took a detour to menace The Van Doos in the video for their extremely catchy new song Baby Be Brutal.
The Van Doos, an indie four piece comprising York based guitarist Louis Bamber, singer Simon Hutchinson from Helmsley, Fred Baty on bass and drummer Dom Antony, are joined by John at his snarling best.
In trademark leather and with slicked-back hair, John welcomes the band into a dingy East London poker night, and proceeds to make mincemeat of the musicians. Only the game at the table isn’t poker: it’s Scrabble…
For a man whose life in Walford has seen him commit two murders, fake his own death, succumb to heroin addiction and even attempt to poison his “dear old ma”, a family board game might seem small-fry.
But if anyone can make wordplay intimidating, it’s John Altman.
It boils down to a face-off between the original East End bad boy and charismatic frontman Simon Hutchinson. We won’t tell you who triumphs…
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Stills from the Video
John can be seen in Cameron Whiley - 'Reh Reh Reh' video
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