John decided to stay in Germany.T1970sAfter having been offered the "job" as singer with legendary German rock cultband "Lucifer's Friend" ('69-'76 & '79 -'95) he records 9 studio albums duringhis time with the band.In the early '70s John also joined the Les Humphries Singers, with whom herecorded more than 20 albums incl. taking part at 1975 Eurovision Song Contest.
In 1976 John joined Uriah Heep as their front man, recording the albums :"Innocent Victim", "Firefly", "Fallen Angel" and "Live '79"touring Europe and the USA until Sept. '79.The ex - Uriah Heep front man and vocalist with Lucifer's Friend has built areputation for his powerful vocals and charismatic personality and is regardedas one of the best singers around...During his longstanding career John has worked with some big names of rock,on various projects, including Roger Glover's "Butterfly Ball" live @ the RoyalAlbert Hall in 1975, feat. David Coverdale, Glenn Hughes, Ian Gillan and Twiggy.He sang on Eddie Hardin's Wizard's Convention II feat. Chris Farlowe,Dennie Lane, Paul Jones and Tony Ashton...1980sJohn had the privilege to have worked with some of the finest record producers,including Tony Clarke (Moody Blues) Jimmy Miller (Rolling Stones) andHarold Faltermayer (Pet Shop Boys), who produced the titles John sang on theLenny McDowell Project "Lost Paradise" and Robert Papst"Still paying my dues to the blues".In late 1980 John joined German rock band "Rebel" later known as "Zar" on three albums, including their hit singles "Line of Fire" & "Eagles Flight".Moving on to Volker Barber's classical project "Excalibur" and several German commercials, including the "Colgate Gel" TV spots, the "Peter Stuyvesant Travel"single "Come Together" and a stint for Harley Davidson Motorbikes..1990sJohn briefly re-joined Rebel, by now known as "ZAR" to record another album.Jan. 1994, John formed GunHill, later known as JLB - John Lawton Band,touring UK & Europe.
In 1995 he briefly re-joined Uriah Heep, for 2 weeks, to tour South Africa withDeep Purple, filling in for their singer Bernie, who was suffering from voice problems..2000- 2010
In August 2000, inspired by German top producer Robert Papst, John recordedhis solo CD "Still Paying My Dues to the blues.." Produced by Robert Papst, itwas released in Europe, UK and Scandinavia, by "Hypertension Music" Hamburgand distributed through "EDEL" Germany.
This album has been hailed as one of the "best works " John has done...;-).In May 2000 during the 4th Uriah Heep Annual Convention in London, planswere made for a one-off concert by the so-called "Hensley/Lawton Band". John was joined by former Heep keyboarder Ken Hensley, for the first time 21years after John's departure from Heep in 1979!With them were Paul Newton (Heep's original bassist), and 2 members of John'sband, Reuben Kane on lead guitar and Justin Shefford on drums.They played a collection of old Heep classics and some of Ken & John’s solosongs to an amazed audience.The concert was recorded for a CD release "The Return"In Feb. 2001 John teamed up with Ken to form the Hensley Lawton Band. After extensive touring, during spring and summer of 2001, culminating witha concert in Hamburg, featuring a full orchestra and a new rendition of Heep'sold classic "Salisbury", both Ken and John return to their respective "solo" careers..In 2001 the John Lawton Band - "JLB" is taken on by Classic Rock Productions,recording the acoustic CD "Steppin' It Up" which features John & Steve Dunning."One More Night" Live at the Mean Fiddler, CD & DVD, is recorded in 2002,followed in 2003 by JLB's "Sting In The Tale" CD, an original studio rock album.Later that year another Live CD & DVD followed : "Shakin' The Tale"...JLB have been touring extensively with their last gig in Hamburg, Sept 2004,when John .decided to take an indefinite break..In May 2006 John joins forces with Dutch guitarist Jan Dumee (ex-Focus)to form "OTR" ( On The Rocks ), a Project featuring Brazilian musicians Ney Conceião on bass, Xande Figueiredo on drums, and Marvio Ciribelli onkeyboards.John & Jan have written material for an album recorded in Brazil in 2007.OTR have signed a record deal with " Lion Music" , covering Europe and NorthAmerica. The new album is named "Mamonama" and was released on10. October 2008.In 2009 the album was also released in Brazil by "Dynamo Records".John is still working with Bulgarian musicians to perform his Live Concertschedule, including legendary Bulgarian rock band BTR & Yassen Dimitrov'sband Nightheat..During Dec. 2008 John entered the world of television by filming, directingand presenting the Bulgarian travel documentary series "John Lawton presents" which alsoincludes music from the "Mamonama" album.Made by Bulgarian TV company "Skat" the films feature interesting historicallandmarks of Bulgarian towns and cities, traditional festivities, breathtakingscenery and interviews with the city mayors and local people..2010 -In March 2010 John made his acting debut, having been offered a small partin the motionpicture Love.net filmed and produced by Bulgarian film companyMiramar Film. Part of Johns scenes were shot at Liscombe Park, UK , with the remainder in Sofia, featuring a guest appearanceby Uriah Heep guitarist Mick Box. The film was premiered in Sofia in March 2011 and released toBulgarian cinemas on 1. April 2011.John continues the filming of his documentary series about Bulgaria:So far the series consists of 19 documentaries , shot all over Bulgaria..In November 2011 John teams up with Bulgarian rock band "Diana Express" to record the album "The Power of Mind" written and composed byDr. Milen Vrabevski.Recorded in Pleven, Bulgaria, during 2011 & Jan. 2012, the album waspremiered live in Bulgaria @ the "Sofia Live Club"on 29. April 2012..In May 2013 John toured with Uriah Heep, again filling in for Bernie Shaw, whowas recovering from a routine medical procedure..Durinng 2013 John became a Patron of the Bulgarian charity,"Mothers for children with autism".in Sofia.In Sept. 2013 John was presented with the "Eagle of the Danube" an award for"Excellence in the promotion of Bulgarian history and culture".Presented by Stanislav Petrov, Mayor of Svishtov, Bulgaria.October 2013 saw the recording of a new Album, "My Kind of Lovin' " incollaboration with composer Dr. Milen Vrabevsky of Intelligent Music.The Album features Simon Phillips of TOTO fame on drums, John Lawton onvocals and Joseph Williams of TOTO, singing guest vocals on 4 tracks..By the end of 2014 Lucifer's Friend was in the process of reforming...Debuting at Sweden Rock Festival 2015 and releasing a Live CD from that show.In May 2017 John was invited by Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissovto the houses of Parliament in Sofia, due to his devotion to Bulgaria & variousinitiatives contributing to the promotion of Bulgarian traditions, culture and history.