John got his start at the age of 19 when Jim Dandy, lead vocalist of Black Oak Arkansas, asked him to join the band as lead guitarist in 1986. After touring the United States. and Canada with Black Oak in the mid 80s, John joined forces with Survivor"s lead vocalist Jimi Jamison in 1989 to record Jamison"s first solo release When Love Comes Down. The first single, "Rock Hard", co-written by Roth, was featured on the hit television series Baywatch.
After touring with Jamison in the early 90s, Roth joined Winger in 1993 for a tour of the United States. and Japan in support of the band"s third record, Pull, as well as appearing in the band"s videos “Down Incognito” and “Who’s The One”.
Since the 1990s, Roth has continued to tour and record with Winger on a number of projects including The Very Best of Winger, Winger IV, and the Winger Live concert Digital Video Disc in 2009, the band released their 5th studio effort Karma, and by fall of 2010 has completed a tour of 19 countries supporting the release. Most recently the band has released their 6th studio album "Better Days Comin" (2014) and will tour in support of.
In 2009, Roth joined melodic rock band Giant as lead guitarist to record their fourth studio album Promise Land. The record was released on February 26 in Europe, and March 9 in the United States of America. In 2012, Roth joined Starship featuring Micky Thomas as their lead guitarist.
Roth, along with Kory Myers, Scotty T, and Ted Partin make up Tom, Dick, and Harry based out of Memphis.