Johnny Bothwell was influenced by Johnny Hodges, played in 1940 in Chicago and then moved to New York City to play in the bands of Woody Herman (1943) and Sonny Dunham ( 1944-1946 ). He was then 1944/45, one of the main soloists in the formations of Boyd Raeburn and played 1945 Gene Krupa. Between 1945 and 1949 he had his own formations and an engagement at Chicago's Tin Pan Alley Club, also in New York and Boston. In his band played, among others, Joe Maini, Eddie Shu and Frank Isola. Bothwell also participated in recordings by Oscar Pettiford. After 1949 he moved to Miami, where he led several bands, but even no longer played.
- Richard Cook & Brian Morton: The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings, 8th Edition, London, Penguin, 2006 ISBN 0-141-02327-9.