John Goodin (1951- 2021) began playing the guitar shortly after seeing the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan show in February of 1964. Ten years later he began to play the mandolin. He has played in many bands and ensembles performing music in a variety of styles and was a founding member of the Louisville Mandolin Orchestra in 1988. Along with studying folk, jazz and pop music he has attended workshops offered by many of today's finest classical mandolinists and he is a long-time member of the Classical Mandolin Society of America.
As a composer, Goodin has written dozens of pieces that have been comissioned, performed and sometimes recorded by mandolin orchestras in Europe, Australia, Japan, Canada, and the United States. Joachim-Trekel- Musikverlag has published four of these mandolin orchestra pieces, The Louisville Suite (1995), Heavens on Earth (2006), Antonina (2015) and The North Georgia Hills (2016). Goodin's contradance band, Contratopia, has recorded over 40 of his tunes on their four CDs: Hands Four, Ballroom Echoes, Smitten and Riff City. Additionally, he has released a duo CD with fiddler Erik Sessions, Notes from the Farm (2012), and three solo CDs, Mandolin Tunes (2011), Deer Tracks for Solo Mandolin (2013) and Mandolin Tunes 2 (2018). Mel Bay Publications has published several books by Goodin; Telemann for Mandolin (2010), 12 Divertimentos for Solo Mandolin by James Oswald (2016), Playford for Mandolin (2017), Airs for the Seasons by James Oswald (2018), and Telemann for Two Mandolins (2019). He has self-published collections of original music including the Contratopia Tunebook (with Erik Sessions, 2001), 31 Waltzes (2009), Midwestern Mandolin Duos (2010), Postcards from the Crater (2016) and May Frost (2018). His music has appeared in Don Julin's Mandolin for Dummies, August Watters' book Exploring Classical Mandolin and volume 3 of The Portland Collection. In Addition, Goodin maintains the mandotopia.com and the So Many Tunes blog.