John Paul was born in Apple Hill in Glengarry County on March 25th, 1930. He learned to play the guitar at the age of seven so that he could accompany his mother Laurette Ranger Vachon when she played the violin.
Growing up in Glengarry, John Paul played on may occasions and with many bands. He played on the Cornwall radio station with his mother and his sister, Alice Amelotte. In addition, he played with Sid Plamondon, George Watson, Rene Trottier and the Glen Orchestra and Mike Gibbs and the Falcons. For many years he played at Paul Lefebvre’s hotel in Dalhousie with Mike Gibbs and after that for several years for Red McHugh at the Alexandria Hotel. Because of his love of the music, John Paul never refused to fill in when needed.
Recordings were also part of his playing experience as, along with Graham Townsend, he accompanied his uncle, Bob Ranger on his last record and played guitar on the original recording of “Glengarry My Home” with Ken MacRae.
A talented musician, John Paul plays lead, electric steel, dobro, bass and rhythm guitars, the piano and some violin. He passed this talent on by doing a bit of teaching; some of his students went on to become professional guitarists.
He joined the Glengarry Old Time Fiddlers as a guitar player and later as a bass player. Since joining, he has been a faithful and valued member of the group. Through his music, he has volunteered his talents at different events in the area and is a popular addition to the camping season when he pulls out his guitar to entertain at the camp outs.
A founding member of the Glengarry Celtic Music Hall of Fame, he has been a loyal supporter since its inception.