Andreas Johnson

Andreas Johnson Biography

March 22nd, 1970 - Lund, Southern Sweden: a wonderful baby starts to let the world hear his phenomenal voice: his name is JON ERIK ANDREAS JOHNSON. His mummy is called Marie, his daddy Gigge; they're both jazz musicians. He also has an older brother called Olof who's now a lawyer. Since they were children, the Johnson brothers have travelled throughout the world with their parents, always in a tour: "I've grown up on the stage, surrounded by instruments, scores and dressing-rooms sometimes not decent. I was the group's mascot and to joke or because I liked it, I always ended up with taking a microphone in my hands, often on daddy's knees" Music becomes a natural yearning for Andreas. As a kid, he used to fall asleep listening to his mother singing jazz songs instead of traditional lullabies, believe it or not! In his early teens he moved with his family in a Stockholm suburb. "There was not so much to do, I only had three choices: sport, drugs or music and I chose the last!".

He starts joining small bands and making his first experiences; but his parents disagree with him having seen many friends quitting their musical career pretty soon. "So you don't want me to be in the music world? I'll prove you wrong!" Andreas releases his first album with the Planet Waves, "Brutal Awakenings", published by EMI only in Scandinavia. The band seems to take inspiration from Bob Marley, and also the title is the same of a Marley's album (Andreas will later confess that they didn't actually know anything about that album!). Between 1993 and 1995 love brings him with the band to New York, where he finds his first personal inspirations for his songs; back in Stockholm the band splits up but under the American influence Andreas releases, again with EMI and only in Scandinavia, his first solo album, "Cottonfish Tales". And here problems begin, he fought with EMI because they didn't give him enough freedom, so he takes a period off in Berlin and in this magic city the new album "Liebling" starts to breathe in only 2-3 months. The album is dedicated to Debbie StarLight, mysterious inspiring muse, dead before her time but somehow still present in his songs' sounds.

Italy brings inspiration too: he spends a couple of weeks in Porto Ercole, Tuscany, and, inspired by green Tuscanian hills, he writes 8 songs, 3 included in the album (the last three). As a final gift he gets a new contract with another recording house, WEA. Tales say that when Andreas went to WEA he brought with him three sample songs in DAT format, but the player jammed right at the proof moment; he took a guitar and decided to make a live performance, with an acoustic version of "The Games We Play": the editor was immediately crazy about it and signed the contract the same day! The POET's talent strikes back! After the album conclusion, comes the single choice: for about two weeks Andreas and his band try to choose a song to be released as a single, but everyone has his own favourite and the choice is not easy; in the end the album opening song is chosen: "Glorious".

In Gothenburg, during the first months of 1999, in an old dismissed gas container, Karl-Johan Larsson directs the video of "Glorious"; in interviews Andreas always says that it was "quite frightful: I was 80 metres above the ground and we were even without permissions!". The song is published just before summer, but it doesn't reach immediate success: "This song is too distressing for summertime" the POET says. But during autumn it becomes the biggest success of the season: it reaches the third place in Italian singles chart and also the fourth place in the "difficult" English chart, which is a quite good result for a debut single! Andreas receives two nominees for the Swedish Grammy Awards, as best single and best video for 1999, but unfortunately without bringing home any award. Critics unanimously recognize that "Glorious" is "the most beautiful song of the last decade"!

Concerts in Germany, England, Spain and Sweden are always sold out. At the end of 1999 the new single, "The Games We Play", is published in Sweden, reaching 7th place in the chart. Unsatisfied with the video, shot in Praga, Andreas decides to shoot a new version during the weekend 4-5 march 2000, with the same director of "Glorious", Karl-Johan Larsson, and again in Gothenburg, waiting for the new single to be published in the rest of Europe on May 15. In the meantime Andreas gets himself ready to conquer the world: after Australia, he's ready for the States and Japan, he will participate in the V2000 on August 18-19, he has already released five songs for the new album... No one will ever stop the POET!


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