b. 1938, Rolling Fork, Mississippi, USA. Dyer took up the harmonica when he was seven and as a teenager sat in with Smokey Wilson in a local club.
He moved to Los Angeles in January 1958 and formed his own band, the Blue Notes, backing visitors such as J.B. Hutto, Jimmy Reed and Jimmy Rogers. He later formed a duo with George Smith, at that time still working as Little Walter Jnr. He recorded a couple of singles for Shakey Jake’s Good Time label before cutting an album, Johnny Dyer And The LA Dukes, for Murray Brothers in 1983. Some of the tracks were later issued in Japan by Mina Records. In 1991, William Clarke included him on Hard Times, an anthology of contemporary LA bluesmen. Soon afterwards, he formed the Houserockers with guitarist Rick Homlstrom, who had previously recorded with Clarke, Billy Boy Arnold, Rod Piazza and Smokey Wilson. Listen Up managed to combine Holstrom’s Pee Wee Crayton -influenced technique with Dyer’s more down-home harmonica playing, including an effective version of Little Walter’s ‘Blue Midnight’. Shake It! added pianist Tom Mahon on a set of original songs that encapsulate the hybrid west coast-Chicago style.