4 May 2018
We are happy to announce a new way to keep in touch with John Walker.
Head on over to John Walker rocks Asia to register for free music and stay up to date with John’s music and performances.
20 January 2016
We are happy to announce the release of John’s new album Rain Dreaming.
The wait is over! Check it out at RainDreaming.com
From Seoul Economuc Daily – 22 October 2015
[IB&Deal] 존 워커 한국맥쿼리그룹 회장 “맥쿼리는 계속 진화 중… 폐기물 처리 등 신사업 확대하겠다”
“맥쿼리는 지난 2000년 한국에 처음 진출한 후 진화를 거듭해왔습니다. 앞으로 폐기물 처리, 바이오매스와 같은 신사업을 발굴하고 확대해나갈 계획입니다.”
존 워커 한국맥쿼리그룹 회장은 22일 서울 소공로 한국맥쿼리 본사에서 가진 서울경제신문과의 인터뷰에서 “현실에 만족하지 않고 끊임없이 먹거리를 찾고 시장을 선도해나가는 것이 맥쿼리의 DNA”라면서 이같이 말했다. 그는 “현재 맥쿼리가 전 세계에서 버는 수익의 40%는 5년 전만 해도 없었던 신사업에서 나온다”면서 “맥쿼리는 한국에서도 이 같은 방식으로 진화 중”이라고 강조했다.
워커 회장은 2000년 신한은행과 공동으로 ‘신한맥쿼리파이낸셜어드바이저리’를 설립해 한국에 처음 진출했다. 당시 국내에 생소한 분야던 인프라 투자를 한국에 소개하며 큰 주목을 받았고 인천공항 고속도로, 천안~논산 고속도로 등 대형 민자 사업에 재무적 투자자로 참여하며 사세를 키웠다. 당시 5명에 불과했던 직원은 15년이 흐른 현재 210명으로 늘었고 운용자산 20조원에 국내에 8개의 계열사를 거느린 금융회사로 성장했다.
워커 회장이 최근 관심을 갖고 있는 분야는 사업장 폐기물 처리사업이다. 그는 “한국 시장에서 여러 사업기회를 찾고 있는데 특히 재생 에너지 분야의 성장성에 주목하고 있다”면서 “특히 폐기물 처리사업은 초기 개발단계에서부터 맥쿼리의 자기자본(PI)을 투자하는 등 적극적으로 키워나갈 것”이라며 “사업장 폐기물 관련 기업에 대한 투자를 확대해나갈 것”이라고 말했다. 실제 한국맥쿼리는 2013년 폐기물 처리업체 대길산업을 인수한 데 이어 최근 또 다른 폐기물 처리업체를 한 곳을 신규 계열사로 편입한 것으로 알려졌다. 맥쿼리는 바이오매스를 활용한 산업에도 관심을 두고 있다. 워커 회장은 “맥쿼리가 2003년 한국에서 고속도로 등 사회간접자본(SOC)에 처음 투자했을 때 느꼈던 감정이 되살아난다”고 말했다.
워커 회장은 국내에서 기업 인수합병(M&A), 기업공개(IPO) 등 전통적인 투자은행(IB) 업무는 매력이 떨어질 것으로 내다봤다. 이는 맥쿼리가 국내에서 IB 업무의 비중을 줄이고 안정적인 현금흐름을 창출할 수 있는 신사업 발굴에 매진하는 이유이기도 하다. 그는 “전통적인 IB 업무는 과거에 비해 경쟁이 치열해지면서 수익도 적고 경기상황에 따른 변동성이 심하다”면서 “맥쿼리가 인프라 펀드, 기업리스, 사업장 폐기물 처리 등으로 사업을 확대하는 것도 안정적인 매출 기반을 다지기 위한 목적”이라고 말했다.
맥쿼리의 강점을 활용한 새 사업도 공개했다. 그는 “인도네시아와 필리핀 등 동남아 국가들에는 여전히 도로•발전소 등 인프라 투자 기회가 열려 있다”면서 “한국 정부와 기업들이 해외 인프라 투자에 나설 때 맥쿼리가 중간에서 금융 주선이나 자문 등 서비스를 제공해 줄 수 있을 것”이라고 말했다. 이어 “한국의 많은 기업들이 해외 인프라 투자에 관심을 갖고 있다”면서 “구체적으로 밝힐 수는 없지만 앞으로 6개월 안에 결실을 볼 수 있을 것”이라고 덧붙였다.
맥쿼리는 한국에서 ‘인프라 공룡’으로 불린다. 서울지하철 9호선의 2대 주주였던 맥쿼리는 요금인상 문제로 서울시와 갈등을 빚다가 지분을 모두 팔고 철수했으며 인천공항고속도로, 부산 백양터널, 창원 마창대교, 광주순환도로 등 국내 12개 민자 사업에 투자하고 있다. 이 때문에 일각에선 주요 민자 사업을 독식하는 맥쿼리를 견제하는 시선도 있다. 하지만 이에 대해 워커 회장은 담담하게 자신의 생각을 밝혔다. 그는 “인프라 사업을 하다 보면 계약 상대방인 지방정부 등과 마찰이 생길 때도 있지만 맥쿼리는 이를 잘 관리해나가고 있다”면서 “지하철 9호선 때 서울시에 여러 솔루션을 제공해서 시와 주주 모두 윈윈하는 결과를 도출한 것이 대표적”이라고 말했다. 오히려 그는 “맥쿼리는 한국에서 지난 15년간 사업을 해오면서 정부나 기업들과 좋은 신뢰관계를 쌓아가고 있다”면서 “맥쿼리는 한국에서 지속적으로 사업을 확장하기 원하는 투자 파트너지 절대 먹튀 자본이 아니라는 것을 이해해달라”고 당부했다. 이어 “나는 한국에서 집을 세 번이나 사고팔았을 정도로 한국에 대한 애착이 크다”면서 “이것만 봐도 한국 사업에 대한 맥쿼리의 의지를 읽을 수 있을 것”이라고 덧붙였다.
실제 워커 회장의 한국 사랑은 남다르다. 그는 한국 여성과 결혼했으며 해물파전과 도토리묵 무침 등을 직접 만들어 먹을 정도로 외국인 사회에서 ‘한식 전도사’로 유명하다. 태권도에 심취해 지난해 호주 태권도연맹회장에도 추대됐다. 음악에도 소질이 있어 지난해 자신이 직접 작사•작곡•노래한 앨범 ’12개의 다리(twelve bridges)’를 발매해 수익금 전액을 한국의 독거노인지원종합센터에 기부한 바 있다. 오는 26일에는 호주에서 어린이 난민을 대상으로 신곡 ‘플라잉 버터플라이(flying butterfly)’를 발표하고 태권도 사범들을 초청해 태권도 한류 전파에도 기여할 예정이다.
From Chosun Ilbo – 29 April 2015
美유학시절 록밴드서 기타₩보컬‐ 밴드서 리더십 길렀죠
Growing up music was always part of my life. Living in my house was like living in an orchestra pit. My mother played violin and piano, my father played accordion and mouth organ, one brother played the flute and the other the violin, both my sisters played guitar and piano and I, as the eldest child played a little bit of each instrument, but especially the guitar and piano. We had to compete for times to practice and because there were so many of us inevitably we had to learn to be a team.
As I reflect on the discipline of studying for my conservatorium of music exams, the duets I would play with my brother, the mini orchestras in my house, my times as guitarist and singer in a rock band and now much later in life my new charitable career as a singer song writer banker I realize that music prepared me very well for leadership. My parents gave me a great gift.
I remember being forced by my parents to play a duet of a very difficult Australian composition with my youngest brother and being very worried about the mistakes he might make at the stages where the finger movements were very rapid. I really did not want to suffer in front of the audience. However I was able to learn that it was my responsibility to make my brother successful and to help him relax and be confident that he would not slip up_ it was a shared responsibility. The concert went very well and as we had supported it each other it was quite fun.
In the 1970s I was in a rock band called “Salis” and played guitar and sang some of the songs. I paid my way through university this way. I was the only writer of songs in the band. I am not a great guitarist really but I learned that writing or choosing the right songs was very important to success and that success came not just great expertise but great planning and mixing of a number of talents and instruments. I also learned_ for the first time about how successful being creative and having a niche product_ like Macquarie with infrastructure investment- can make teams. We played music other people did not play and we had our own original songs that students could clearly identify with. We did not compete with other bands who played the same music as each other. This is when I originally wrote the song “ Highway of my Mind” which is on my recent album.
This was a time in my life where I was practically a professional musician as I met my equipment expenses from the fees we earned from playing. I noticed however that actually the life of a musician is one where you must make a lot of sacrifices. It is so rewarding when you are playing and performing in a sensual sense, however, to play as a career I discovered has many challenges. At this time in my life In was no longer living at home but sharing rented places with friends and some band members but there came a point when for various reasons I decided to try to move out on my own into a small rented flat. I soon discovered that it was very hard to eat, pay rent , maintain a car etc purely from writing music and playing in a band. I soon found myself, in addition to performing, working late nights in a bakery and during some days of the week as a builders laborer where my job was unload roof tiles and bricks from trucks at building sites. This was a very valuable learning stage in my life also. I quickly learned that life needs a balance of fun, creativity and hard work. It was a good, if not tiring , time.
I enjoy music wonder why I became a banker and not a musician. I have to honestly say that I have never had a career plan. For my career I came to the realization that I needed to be creative to be happy and that music and songwriting would always be there for me as a gift but I felt I needed something more serious to balance those things. I had studied politics and got the chance to become a Government official. I seized that chance with open arms and moved to a new city. At first as a junior I still had time to form another band and play quite regularly but as I got promoted my guitars began to get cobwebs.
My move from Government official to banker in 1998 was all motivated by the curiosity of that was on the other side of the hill. The song was changing again. This time the script eventually brought me to Korea and soon, in this creative and musically orientated society I met fellow musicians who kindly invited me into their bands and , gradually I got my confidence and musical creativity back. Music has helped me in my business in Korea_ we have played to very senior audiences. It has helped me with my passion for charity_ we have played for a variety of causes. It has helped me cope with success and with failure. It has helped me learn about Korea and Korean people.
I do believe that life is music and music is life. As a young person it is hard to realize just what things our parents require us to do and benefit our future lives .Everyday now I am so thankful for the gift of music and the lessons it taught me for my career.
From MK Business News – 10 February 2015
“직원이 낸 만큼 회사도…” 맥쿼리의 행복한 ‘더블 기부’
250명의 한국맥쿼리그룹 임직원은 매년 초 연말정산 시기에 연말정산 관련 서류 외에 또 다른 서류 준비에 분주한 시간을 보낸다. 임직원이 개인적으로 기부한 금액만큼 회사가 같은 금액을 기부하는 사회공헌 프로그램 ‘매치잇(Match it)’에 참여하기 위해서다. 지난 한 해 개인적으로 기부한 영수증과 기부처 서류 등을 사내 인트라넷 사이트에 첨부하면 회사가 해당 기부처에 같은 금액을 기부한다.
맥쿼리그룹이 사회공헌활동을 통해 지난해 한국에 기부한 돈은 1억7000만원에 달한다. 사회공헌활동을 담당하는 ‘맥쿼리그룹파운데이션’은 1985년 설립 이후 지난해 9월까지 전 세계에서 2132억원가량을 기부했다.
맥쿼리가 진출한 28개 국가에서 모두 이 같은 매칭 기부 프로그램을 진행하고 있다. 맥쿼리 관계자는 “이미 직원들의 개인적 기부를 받은 기부처에서 회사가 같은 금액을 다시 기부하는 점에 놀라워하고 감사하게 생각한다”고 말했다. 맥쿼리그룹은 이외에도 다양한 사회봉사활동을 벌이고 있다.
‘지역사회의 날’에 세이브더칠드런 등 비영리단체(NGO)에서 봉사활동에 참여하고 재단 설립 기념 주간인 ‘파운데이션 위크’에는 전 세계 맥쿼리그룹 직원들이 한 주간 다양한 기금 모금 행사를 진행한다. 지난해 얼음 대신 플라스틱공을 이용한 버킷챌린지와 건강 주스 판매를 통해 1600만원을 모아 비영리 사단법인‘사랑의 바이올린’에 기부했다
존 워커 한국맥쿼리그룹 회장은 “기업과 사회가 균형 잡힌 성장을 이룰 수 있도록 지속적으로 직원들의 자발적 사회공헌활동을 지원할 예정”이라고 말했다.
워커 회장은 지난해 직접 작사·작곡하고 연주한 앨범(12 Bridges)을 내고 앨범 출시행사 수익금 전액을 국내 등 아시아 전역의 자선단체에 기부한 바 있다.
10 October 2014
Malala Yousafzai has won the 2014 Nobel peace prize.
One of the most popular tracks on 12 Bridges is the beautiful tribute to Malala. Watch the video below.
09 October 2014
We are happy to announce that Cathay Pacific Airways now offers the album, 12 Bridges, on its inflight entertainment Audio-and-Video-On-Demand system.
International travellers can now while away the hours listening to the smoothest of country rock tunes. One more reason to fly with Asia’s number one airline.
12 September 2014
12 Bridges featured on influential K-pop website Melon
From The Korea Times – 05 September 2014
Author: Choi Kyong-ae
Macquarie executive to sing for Sewol victims
Macquarie Korea Chairman John Walker sang songs from his self-produced album “12 Bridges” at an Itaewon pub, Thursday night.
Over 100 people showed up to listen to Walker’s performance. The singer-songwriter sang a number of his works including “It’s a cruel world,” “Highway of my mind” and “Malala.”
Walker already knew what he wanted to express to the audience even before stepping on stage.
He wanted to share the pain of the families of the victims injured and killed in the sinking of the ferry Sewol, while showing appreciation for the country he loves so much.
“It is called Sad Sad Song and I have trouble playing it as I cry a little every time I play it,” he said, explaining that he wrote the song to help the victims and their bereaved families.
He planned to perform it live, where he could do something more to help the families of the victims deal with their terrible loss.
The song did not make it on to “12 Bridges.”
His latest release was finished shortly before the Sewol disaster on April 16 which took the lives of nearly 300 high school students, he said.
In May, his CDs were auctioned at a charity hosted by the Australian and New Zealand Association in Seoul.
“The money was donated to support the Sewol relief effort along with other proceeds from the auction that night,” said Walker.
He said that all sales from the album will be donated to various Asian charities, including the Comprehension Support Center for the Elderly Living Alone in Seoul.
His wife Jina Moon is an Asiatic Black bear protection activist.
He has raised 20 million won, about 20 percent, of his goal of $100,000.
Describing himself as a “travelling man,” Walker said he has a lot of time when he is on plane flights or finds himself stuck in traffic so he tries to use these times to not think about work and focus on other things instead.
Walker has recently been appointed as chairman of Macquarie Project Services for the Middle East and Asia. In 2000, he established Macquarie’s Korean business with only three staff members, according to Macquarie Korea, the largest foreign asset manager in Asia’s fourth-biggest economy.
“I would like to do more albums and find additional ways to give through combining music with giving,” Walker said, adding he and his wife run a family trust where they give 10 percent of their income to a variety of charity causes.
His Sewol song, together with nine other songs, will be included in a second album he plans to release next year.
From Metro Seoul – 03 September 2014
Author: 백아란 기자 (alive0203@)
존 워커 맥쿼리코리아 회장, 음악앨범 출시 기념 자선 행사 개최
이번 앨범은 워커 회장이 필리핀에서 초대형 태풍으로 고통 받는 이재민 소식을 접하고 도울 방법을 생각하다가 발매한 것으로 그가 직접 작사, 작곡하고 연주하며 부른 노래 12곡이 수록돼있다.
워커 회장은 이번 행사에서 수록곡 중 일부를 직접 연주할 계획이다.
또한 이날 행사에서 발생한 수익금은 아시아 전역이 있는 자선단체에 기부되며, 한국의 독거노인종합지원센터에도 기부금이 전달될 예정이다.
워커 회장은 “잊고 있던 음악에 대한 열정을 통해 도움이 필요한 곳에 작게나마 보탬이 되고싶다”고 말했다.
From radio tbs eFM Seoul – 04 August 2014
Host: Alex Jensen
Interview with John Walker, an Australian veteran investment banker who turns into singer-song writer.
From the Sydney Morning Herald – 18 July 2014
Author: Colin Kruger
Who’s the Boss now?
CBD has been keeping an eye on July’s “alternative rock” debut album by Macquarie Group’s Korea boss, John Walker.
Your columnist could not help but note the glowing reviews that have shown up on Apple iTunes. There are three to be exact and nothing less than five stars.
“Music from the heart from this new artist. He is giving all sales to the Philippines red cross. Brilliant!” says someone called Eungsahm.
“Sleek and lush production, something for everyone. Brilliant first album!” says DCPerth.
While PEEWEE-WA calls it “a heartfelt musical journey through the life of an accomplished and masterful musician”.
From the Korea Times – 07 July 2014
Author: Yoon Sung-won
Walker – investment banker who rocks
‘Korea reawakens music in me,’ says Macquarie Korea leader
John Walker, chairman of Macquarie Group of Companies Korea, is a veteran investment banker who has led the company for the last 14 years since it was established in the late 2000
As the head of Asia’s largest listed investment funds, business management should be undoubtedly what he can do best.
At the same time, he had another thing from his private life to talk about — music.
Walker appreciates Koreans and their passionate attitude, especially for art and music, for inspiring him to realize his love for music again.
“Korean people really stick together when they make music in bands. It really awakened me and I really appreciate it,” he said during a recent interview with The Korea Times.
Walker, who just entered his 60s this year, said he first tasted the joy of music when he started to learn piano at the age of eight. Since then, he attended a conservatory for six years honing his skills to play the piano.
“I was a just typical kid but my family was musical,” Walker said. “My mother played violin and the piano, my sisters all played guitar and my brother played the flute.”
It was when he went to the United States as a 15-year-old tenager that he picked up a guitar. Mesmerized by the instrument’s charm, he joined in bands and played the guitar. Looking back on his younger days, Walker said he was “lucky” to go to school in the U.S. because I studied only piano for a long time in Australia.
He had to stop playing the guitar in bands, and it was only 30 years later that he could recover his passion for music.
Walker admitted music is something that can hardly be forgotten and said it would, “come back” to one’s memory. He said he appreciates Korea in starting to do music again in three decades.
“One of the big things that I really owe Korea is that the country has re-awakened me with music,” Walker said. “If I didn’t come here, my guitars would be covered with cobwebs and I would never have taken up music again.”
Walker recalled a senior, who was a chairman and the drummer in his group. He said he learned much from his dedication to the band.
“Music and the band were a big part of his life because he was close to retiring from his business. Yet still, he had his position on an international semiconductor industry’s association. You know how Korean people never retire. So the band was his way of maintaining balance between his work and life by keeping his network and his friends,” he said. “I also thank him for his studio where we could practice and perform from time to time.”
Walker’s band has six members in it — saxophonist, flutist, trombonist, two guitarists a bass guitarist, drummer, keyboardist and two singers including him. But he said the members are not fixed since the band is friendship-based. Sometimes other people who can sing or play an instrument come along and play together.
“I don’t believe I was invited to the band because I was any good. Maybe my colleagues just needed a senior foreigner CEO to be in the band,” Walker said with modesty. “Anyway, I went along and it was great.”
Walker said he’ll be the only foreigner when one of the singers leaves the country later this year. “I always tried to bring another foreigner to give some balance to the band,” he said.
Walker said the best way of describing his music is to call it as a kind of country rock and he added a bit of rap number, folk music, ballad, and rock and roll to give variety.
“The genre depends on the mood that you’re in when you do it, and it depends on what’s happening in and around your life,” he said. “I wrote about my father-in-law who passed away last year. It was a sad thing and was happening in my life.”
Walker said he worked for a new album with 12 songs. Most of the songs he composed by himself reflects his own feelings and thoughts.
“I was trying to think of what to call my album. And then I decided to call it, “After the Storm,” which is about the disastrous typhoon in the Philippines,” he said. “I was also thinking of donating all the money came from the sale of the album to the Philippines typhoon victims.”
In his recent album titled “12 Bridges,” he said, “Music creates a vast bridge over the normal traffic of our lives which can carry all our thoughts and feelings to others around us,” adding his wish to sympathize with people and societies.
From the Sydney Morning Herald – 30 June 2014
Author: Colin Kruger
There’s no holding back the money-makers at Macquarie Group.
The big boss, Nic Moore, charged the troops with finding new revenue streams for the fee factory, and some have offered truly innovative solutions.
Macquarie’s Korea boss, John Walker, is taking the unprecedented step of launching his own album next week, 12 Bridges. Amazon.com, which will be selling the digital downloads from Tuesday, has the album categorised under ”Alternative Rock > Singer-Songwriters”.
12 Bridges leads off with a song titled Blake Snake. CBD was taken with lyrics like: ”I don’t know why you thrill me so, I’ll bring you love, just say so, black snake”. CBD considers it the greatest contribution to boardroom rock’n’roll since former ANZ boss John McFarlane entertained the troops with a few Springsteen numbers at the staff party in 1999.
McFarlane, who fronted the Scottish band the Sekrets in the 1960s – which backed bands such as The Hollies – argued his music played a serious role in his attempts to ”change the culture” of the bank. We’re not sure if Walker is aiming for something similar at Macquarie with songs like It’s a Cruel World and Friends in High Places.
The more financially savvy Macbankers will note the arbitrage opportunity available between Amazon’s pre-sale price of 12 Bridges at $US8.99 ($9.50) and Sevendigital’s £7.49 ($14.50).
A wordsmith, too
The album release isn’t Walker’s first dabble in artistic pursuits . The naturalised Korean citizen has also published a children’s book in 2009 called Ura’s World, in both Korean and English. ”While drawing inspiration from the beauty of Korea’s natural scenery and its foundation myth, this endearing book tells the story of a moon bear’s adventures, along with offering heartfelt lessons about nature,” reads a blurb spotted by CBD.