John Winton Pickering was born in Murchison, TX to professional singing parents. John became a professional radio singer at the age of five. His parents devised a means for John and Bill to reach the microphone by standing on apple crates. They started on radio at Tyler, TX and from there to various radio and T.V. stations throughout the great Southwest. The Pickering Family Quartet performed gospel, country, western, comic and popular songs together for fifteen years, until the death of Pop Pickering in 1953. The family appeared on a daily-30 minute radio show on KTRH in Houston for 2 years. In that time, they made stage appearances with the Statesmen Quartet, Blackwood Brothers, Hank Locklin, Hank Thompson, Curly Fox, TX Ruby, and many more.
After Pop's death in Lubbock, TX, John and Bill continued singing with various vocal groups, including the late recording star Buddy Holly. They were the "voices of the Crickets" on 9 of the first 12 Cricket songs on "The Chirping Crickets" LP - the only group-sound album released while Buddy Holly was alive. These songs were recently nominated for a Grammy for Best Historical Album at the 53rd Grammy awards.
In 1969 the Pickering Brothers recorded in Nashville on Stop Records with the first country version of "Proud Mary" and other releases including ones with Daffan Records and Stoneway Records of Houston. They had 8 national releases.
In 1984, The Picks, (John and Bill Pickering and Bob Lapham) overdubbed additional recorded Buddy Holly solos that have been released worldwide and are found on their website, www.buddyhollyandthepicks.com.John recorded 4 gospel albums, most of them his original songs. John served as a Deacon, Bible Teacher, Soloist and Sunday School Music Director at Houston's First Baptist Church and at several churches in Corpus Christi, TX. John and accompanist Vicky performed at many churches and secular programs.