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January 24, 2013

Welcome to Chanoyu Records.

Chanoyu Records is a new label created to release the music of UK guitarist/composer John Ellis.  SLY GUITAR is the latest release by John. His work as a guitarist has been compared with artists such as Robert Fripp and Fred Frith. If you are interested in modern guitar music, this is the place for you.  Copies of SLY GUITAR are now available from this site.

The moody soloing on “Infanta” could easily have come off one of Andy Summers’ and Robert Fripp’s well-known collaborative albums, Bewitched and I Advance Masked from the early eighties. “Pedalo” would actually fit rather well on a late-period King Crimson album.” From a review by ‘Make your own taste’.


March 3, 2017

A Gift Of Serenity. A novel by John Ellis

John Ellis has written a novel!  A Gift Of Serenity is now available on Kindle. You don’t need a Kindle to read it as you can download Kindle apps for phones. tablets and computers. If you like books by Joseph Campbell, Peter Ackroyd, Dan Brown, Charles Fort, J.K.Rowling, Mervyn Peake, Tolkien et al you might like his little go at writing an extended story.
If you liked the FB ghost story he did a few years ago, you will probably like this.
If you like stories that drop hints and clues, you’ll probably like this.
So if you do read it and find any major errors please let him know. For example, if you are a farmer in Devon or Cornwall tell him if he’s got it wrong about harvest times. If he does change the book as a result he will send you a copy of Sly Guitar as a thank you. And as you can see, the journey continues in the next book. And if you do like it, please tell your friends.

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January 25, 2017

John Ellis and his trusty acoustic.

This is me around 1973, playing my hand made Dick Knight acoustic (which I still have). This was a reference photo for an illustration that was part of my course work.

Posted by in Guitar, John Ellis, Lessons and tagged as

August 17, 2016

John Ellis and The Luma Group

You might not know this but several years ago John formed a not-for-profit organisation called The Luma Group. It has been mothballed for a while but now John intends to revive it. The group exists to provide freelance work for East London based artists by empl0ying them to deliver Luma Group workshops. Of course, this relies on funding and John is very keen to work with corporate bodies that take Corporate Social Responsibility seriously. Please check the website for more information.

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May 5, 2016

Limited Edition prints.


Limited edition prints from the photographic work of John Ellis are now available.

Click here to find out more.

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April 24, 2015

Calendar of events

We have now created a calendar page so that you know where John Ellis will be performing live or teaching a workshop etc. It’s in the main menu bar. Click on ‘Live Work’. Use the tag filter to see the kind of event you are interested in.

May 21, 2014

Guitar Access

Check out the site for John Ellis’ guitar teaching. Lots of how-to’s and tab.

May 15, 2014

Wabi Sabi 21© and the Gallery Music Series

We have now made available all the tracks from the Gallery Music Series and Wabi Sabi 21©. These represent the electronic side of the music of UK composer John Ellis.

You can stream the full length versions of all tracks and you can also buy individual tracks.


May 12, 2014

Music in the new world.

Do you love real music?

We are clearly at a major turning point when it comes to the interface of artists and the people who like their music. Without your support, musicians and songwriters like myself would find it almost impossible to carry on the creative process. Traditionally, record labels, publishers and agents etc were the ‘middlemen’ in that process.

But for most of us those days are over. And that means that artists and fans are now working much more symbiotically. Fantastic!

So here are a few ideas for those of you who want to help and support emerging artists or those of us still dedicated to exploring new musical landscapes. (more…)

April 17, 2014

The Pidgeon Hole and other dilemmas.


So……….you learn to play guitar and you listen to lots of different types of music and you end up creating something that is , hopefully, unique music. Now, at some point you think “I’d like to do a gig or 2 or even make a record”. That’s the easy bit.

And now you find that you have to give your work a label. For you, it’s just the thing you do, but Outsideworld must know which mental folder to stuff you into. Are you rock, punk, blues, flamenco, skiffle, surf etc?

You’ve got 2 choices. Find a pidgeon hole that might vaguely have space for your type of twanging OR tack on your own little box. In fact if you are a truly creative musician you will be tacking on lots of different boxes. Now, as we know, pidgeon holes have to have a little label stuck on the front because the makers of those boxes assume the visitors to said boxes are too stupid to work out for themselves what is in the box.

So here is the current over-a-cup-of-rosie-lee conversation at Chanoyu Towers. What should we write on the label when we stuff  SLY GUITAR into our new pidgeon hole, because there sure ain’t one around with room for us!

April 8, 2014

Another Sly Guitar review

Here is another nice review of Sly Guitar.


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A debut novel by John Ellis.



Buy it now!


If you like the work of Dan Brown, Peter Ackroyd, Tolkien, Joseph Campbell, Mervyn Peake, George R.R. Martin and others you will enjoy this debut novel from John Ellis.


'A Gift Of Serenity' follows the 'long march' of Charles Walker, a very unpleasant human being who is drawn to an unknown destination in the West of England, not knowing who or what he will find when or if he gets there.


Over thirteen chapters we follow the strange looking Walker from London to Cornwall across an ancient, sacred landscape set in the year 2020. He has left London as a result of a visit from The Blitzers and a need to find some kind of personal epiphany. On his way he encounters strange people and experiences events that come from a mysterious and darker England hidden from the view of city dwellers. A place of folk memory and local legends. As a reader you will meet the giant Jargo Darrowman , Magda and her blind brother Jess, the female vicar Ophelia, Stella Phoebe Moon, the barmaid of The Crafty Crow and many more strange characters.


In this debut novel, John Ellis has drawn from personal experience and his own interests in the sacred landscape of England to craft a story that combines mystery, suspense, surrealism and magical reality. He says the story grew out of the lyrics of a song he wrote and still performs regularly called Albion Street.


The book is conceived as a piece of literature but is written as a series of episodes that would translate into modern television viewing such as Netflix or Amazon. But it is also an homage to the storytelling of his literary hero, Charles Dickens. In fact, several years ago Ellis created a Facebook thread as if it were an unfolding Dickensian Christmas ghost story. Readers took the story to be a real event and their praise encouraged Ellis to write in a more expanded form. The result is what you might be about to read.