Johnny Al Bazi, better known as El Bandolero considers himself to be the father of all Bandoleros in the greater Chicagoland area. Born in Baghdad, Iraq on October 15th of 1964, Johnny is of Assyrian heritage. He started playing the guitar at the age of 16, when asked why he started playing he states “I feel like music was in my blood ever since I was born.” Due to the ongoing war in Iraq and the unfortunate loss of his brother Al Bazi was forced to flee his homeland and settle down in Greece. During his time living in Greece Johnny performed at small private parties and got his first taste of being onstage.” However, it was not until his immigration to the US that Johnny formally joined a band named “Bandito de Amore.” Following, his brief time with Bandito, Al Bazi finally decided to realize his dream and start his own band which he named Bandoleros. As creator and lead singer of the band Al Bazi wrote many of the well-known songs from the album Maximo including Mi Niña, They Call Me Bandolero, and Tu No La Vera.
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