Rain Dreaming

In the News

Australian Financial Review – 6 March 2018

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‘No whiteboard needed’ when expanding abroad

For Macquarie Group, the decision to launch a business in South Korea didn’t involve a long session on the whiteboard or an extensive strategy paper.

According to John Walker, vice-chairman of the investment bank in Asia, it was just one conversation with his then boss, Nicholas Moore, who is now the group’s chief executive.

“In late 1999, at a half-yearly conference, Nicholas Moore was talking about the dangers of Macquarie getting too dominant in its home market,” he said.

“I went to see him after the speech and said ‘I want to go somewhere’.”


Australian Financial Review – 14 March 2016

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New investment model de-risks Asian infrastructure projects, says John Walker


John Walker, chairman of InfraCo Asia and Macquarie’s Korea operations, has called on Australian engineering and construction groups to be more adventurous in Asia and participate in broader range of infrastructure projects to help boost private investment in the region.

Australian expertise in building water projects, heavy and light rail, airports and seaports as well as infrastructure technology, such as road pricing and logistics systems, could help Asian countries develop dams, wind farms and grain markets, Mr Walker said.

“We would like to see a little more of [Australian companies],” Mr Walker told The Australian Financial Review.



Singapore Airlines – 2 March 2016



Singapore Airlines adds Rain Dreaming to their inflight play list – now an even better way to fly.

‘노래방서 기타’파란눈 CEO가 앨범·공연 나선 사연 – 14 February 2016

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지난 4일 만 61세의 생일을 맞이한 존 워커(John Walker) 한국 맥쿼리그룹(맥쿼리인프라) 회장의 얘기다. 호주 출신인 그는 본래 어려서 배운 기타 실력은 대학 시절 ‘짭짤한’ 아르바이트 자리도 꿰찰 정도였지만 공직자로 일하면서 취업 이후 약 20년 동안은 거짓말처럼 단 한 번도 기타를 잡은 적이 없다.

그런데 맥쿼리코리아 총 책임자로 한국에 온 2000년, 그는 다시 기타와 사랑에 빠지게 됐다. 직원들과 회식 후 2차로 간 ‘노래방’이라는 한국 문화와 맞닥뜨리면서부터다. 평소 그는 “한국에 거주하는 외국계 투자은행장들 중에 개인적으로 부동산(주택)을 직접 매입한 사람은 나밖에 없을 것”이라고 말할 정도로 지한파지만 한국이 과거의 취미까지 되살려줬다며 자랑했다.

워커 회장은 “노래방에 기타를 가지고 온 직원이 있어서 오랜만에 기타를 치며 노래를 해봤는데 칭찬과 격려가 쏟아졌다”며 “그때부터 자신감을 얻어 음악생활을 다시 할 수 있었다”고 말했다.

노래방에서 다시 발견한 ‘끼’는 외국계 CEO들로 구성된 아마추어밴드 추천가입으로 이어졌고, 여기서 자신감을 더 얻은 그는 아예 한국의 전문 음악가들을 소개받아 앨범 제작까지 하게 된다.  


Sydney Morning Herald, CBD – 8 February 2016

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Seoul classics


While Nic Moore was busy distracting the financial world with Macquarie Group’s operational briefing on Thursday, CBD was tuning into the latest musical release from the head of its Korean operations, John Walker.

Your columnist has been a big fan of Walker since the release of his first album some years back, and Rain Dreaming has been worth the wait.

“Like 12 Bridges before it, the songs combine slick professional musicianship with the unique perspectives of an Australian country boy who has become a truly global citizen. With virtuoso performances from some of Asia’s leading session musicians, Rain Dreaming is re-defining the term World Music,” says Walker’s web site.

“The breakout Country & Western tune Waiting for the Rain promises to be the special hymn for those farming communities around the world who are facing long dry spells.”



World Taekwondo Federation – 30 January 2016

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Rock ‘n Roll Banker Donates Profits, Song to Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation

John Walker performing at Seoul Launch

At a launch event in Seoul, a prominent investment banking executive previewed his second music album and announced that profits from the work would be donated to the Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation.

Seoul-based John Walker, Chair of Marketing Committee of the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) and recently appointed WTF Treasurer, is executive director at Macquarie Group Limited and chairman of Macquarie Group of Companies in Korea. Beyond his career in finance, the energetic Australian is a practicing martial artist, a published children’s book author and a singer-songwriter.

“Flying Butterflies,” a song on Walker’s new “Rain Dreaming” album, was specially written as the theme song for the WTF’s Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation., which aims to empower refugees and displaced persons worldwide with the exercise, discipline, martial art and Olympic sport of taekwondo.



Korea4expats.com – 19 January 2016

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john-chosunJohn Walker AM, the Chairman of the Macquarie Group of Companies in Korea, has just last week released his second music album “Rain Dreaming”. This follows hot on the heels of “12 Bridges” which was his debut album 12 months ago. As with “12 Bridges, John wrote and performs all of the songs which, this time around, are more “country” in style. The albums are recorded and produced in Seoul.

Up until his late twenties, John was a very active musician and performer, having studied classical piano and jazz guitar in his youth. He also composed a number of rock songs in that period and took his band into a number of talent shows playing those songs in Australia. John then launched into a career in government and then investment banking and as he says “let his guitars gather cobwebs.

When moving to Korea in 2000 to establish Macquarie’s business, John soon rediscovered his guitar. He says he had no choice as nearly every business meeting involved Karaoke and every Korean person he met had an infectious love of music.

Although John began playing his guitar again, he did so in the privacy of his own apartment for a number of years. But in 2011, he was approached to join an amateur band then known as “The FORCA Band” and now known as ”The CEO Band” in Korea. John recalls his great nervousness in again playing with a group of other people, who were doing public performances. His guitar playing was very rusty and his singing even more rusty.