Born: March 9th 1942, Garnant, Wales.
Cale's father Arthur George Cale was a miner in the Gelly Geidrum coal mine. His mother Margaret Davies was a school teacher until she married Arthur at the age of 36. John was their only child.
Plays: viola, guitar, bass, keyboards, harpsichord, harmonium, celeste, marimba, sarinda, horn, harp, piano and organ.
Cale composed his first piece while attending grammar school: Tocatta in the style of Khachaturian.
Studied musicology at Goldsmith's College, London, from 1960 to 1963. Cale was awarded a Leonard Bernstein Scholarship. Influenced by avant-garde composers John Cage and La Monte Young.
Cale is highly valued as a producer. He started producing bands in the late Sixties, stood at the forefront when punk exploded and is still much in demand.
He produced the debuts of The Stooges and Patti Smith. Other production feats include the Happy Mondays, the Mediæval Baebes, Nico, Siouxsie & The Banshees and Les Nouvelles Polyphonies Corses.
From the nineties on providing movie soundtracks became an important part of his income.
Cale returned to rock in the 21st century, releasing a string of highly acclaimed EPs and albums and hitting the road with a full backup band on a regular basis.
As of 2009 he has been performing his Paris 1919 album in full quite a few times.
John Cale currently lives in California.