What does Southern Soul sound like? Jeremy Johnson. Who is Jeremy Johnson, you ask? Combine the throaty delivery of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Ronnie Van Zant, the “hang loose” style of Jack Johnson, and the activist bent of Ben Harper, and you’ve got a pretty good approximation of the Jeremy Johnson sound. This long, strange journey to his current musical destination started a decade and a half ago in a hardcore band in high school, through a stint as a house DJ, from San Diego all the way to Washington, DC.
Jeremy is grateful for where the journey has taken him, and how it has enabled this native of Blacksburg, Virginia, to leave his desk job to pursue music full-time. He credits his father, a former vocalist and drummer in a cover band, with introducing him to Motown and the Blues and helping to shape his sound. An engineer by training who studied in his hometown at Virginia Tech, Jeremy spends his days crafting lovingly detailed songs now.
An avid outdoorsman and lover of the fantastical fiction of JRR Tolkien and Stephen Lawhead, Jeremy crafts lyrics that incorporate powerful images of nature into his hopeful tales of everyday life. Music has allowed him to treat every day as an adventure and to take life in hand, observe it, and share a new perspective on what he sees. His musical inspirations are the tireless work ethic of James Brown, the versatility of Damon Albarn of Blur and the Gorillaz, and the musicality of the Beatles. His long-term musical goals include touring the world sharing his vision, lending his production skills to other artists, starting businesses to help other creatives better reach their audiences, and ultimately scoring movies.
Jeremy credits an incredibly supportive community of DC-area musicians and artists, including Ryan Brogan, Jesse Eaves, and Robert Winship, with helping him to develop his sound more fully. This maturation of his music will be on full display on his upcoming EP. The song “Biloxi Bound” tells the story of his parents journey from Texas to Mississippi as a young couple. He sings about falling in love and treating every day as an adventure in “The Gift”, and “Angels and Kings” diverts attention from every day life to focus on more heavenly perspective. Jeremy is quiet but resolute in his faith, living as Jesus would want him to, loving God and people.
Despite loving constant change and new challenges, Jeremy has decided on a career in music and is determined to stick with it. The New EP will show him exerting his Southern rock influences in a stronger manner, while still retaining the rock and soul elements of his sound. As he eases his way past his 29th birthday, Jeremy credits his family, his faith, and his friends with helping him realize his goal of sharing his gifts with the world.