John McBain (musician)

John McBain (born John Paul McBain on April 23, 1965) is an American musician, producer and mastering engineer from New Jersey. He was guitarist for Monster Magnet, Hater, and Wellwater Conspiracy, among the others. He’s also active as a solo artist and has contributed to The Desert Sessions.[1]

John McBain
Birth nameJohn Paul McBain
Born (1965-04-23) April 23, 1965 (age 55)
New Jersey, USA
GenresRock, space rock, stoner rock, psychedelic rock
Years active1989-present
Associated acts


After leaving Monster Magnet, McBain moved to Washington State to create the garage-rock group Hater,[2] along with Matt Cameron (Soundgarden, Pearl Jam), Ben Shepherd (Soundgarden) and Brian Wood (brother of Mother Love Bone vocalist Andrew Wood). The band released two albums of their brand of garage/psychedelic rock: their self-titled debut in 1993 and their follow-up, The 2nd, which was recorded in 1995 but released in 2005.

In 1997, after Hater broke up, McBain participated in the first Desert Sessions, a musical project led by Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme. There he befriended ex-Kyuss/Fu Manchu drummer Brant Bjork.

He was a live member of the Queens of the Stone Age for their first three shows, and co-wrote the song "Regular John" which appears on their self-titled debut album.

Wellwater ConspiracyEdit

In 1997, McBain and Matt Cameron created the Wellwater Conspiracy along with Ben Shepherd. Their debut release was Declaration of Conformity, released in 1997 on the Third Gear label. Shortly after the release, Cameron was chosen to replace Jack Irons as drummer for rock group Pearl Jam. However, Cameron maintained both groups, contributing to a further three Wellwater Conspiracy albums. Notable appearances include keyboardist Glenn Slater of folk rock group The Walkabouts, Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam and Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age and Kyuss.

Solo careerEdit

In 2004, John moved to San Francisco, refining material that he had accumulated which he believed wasn't in step with the Wellwater Conspiracy's garage rock style. In February 2006 he released The In-Flight Feature on Duna Records[3] (founded by Brant Bjork). In 2012 McBain collaborated with Carlton Melton on their Smoke Drip 12 inch LP [4]


With Monster Magnet:

With Hater:

With Devilhead

With Wellwater Conspiracy:

Solo work:

Other Contributions:


  1. ^ "Desert Sessions Biography". John McBain. Allmusic. 2007. Retrieved July 23, 2009.
  2. ^ "John McBain Biography". Allmusic. 2006. Retrieved July 23, 2009.
  3. ^ "Amazon page for In-Flight Feature". Amazon. 2006. Retrieved July 23, 2009.
  4. ^ "Headphones required: John McBain's psychedelic guitar". Erenlai. 2012. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
  5. ^ "All Hail the Crown". Shawn Smith Collective. 2011. Retrieved June 16, 2011.