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Sam-Jonathan-Johnson: Bio


A gospel music virtuoso since the age of 15, Sam has always built his musical creations on a gospel foundation.  However, as he has evolved musically,  there does'nt seem to be an exact genre description for his music!  Urban Contemporary is the closest description so far!  So, for all his gospel fans out there, we say;  What's in a name unless the name is JESUS!   Music is, and will always be, the universal langauage, and God has chosen Sam to speak!!!  Here is a brief synopsis of Sams'musical journey.

SJJ (Samuel Jonathan Johnson) began playing the organ at the age of 14, at a little church in Des Moines, Iowa where his mom was choir director and pianist. The way he started playing has been a legendary story passed around the Gospel music circuit for years. SJJ comes from a family of singers, musicians, and music teachers who were originally based in the mid-west. When SJJ was !6 years old the family moved to New York City, where he played for several churches quickly gaining notoriety as one of New York’s finest musicians. Since SJJ had been around music teachers all his life, he was compelled to teach as well. Whether showing other musicians the newest licks, teaching choirs (voice), or showing school kids the basics of music (although he had never been formally trained) SJJ was a natural teacher. At age 19 he went into the Army and was introduced to jazz by some older guys in his unit. A few months later he was playing jazz at piano bar gigs and college parties in his spare time, wherever he was stationed. After returning home to New York from service, he continued to play for church choirs, but this time composing songs which incorporated jazz chords with gospel chords creating his unique style and sound. A few years later he recorded his debut album “MY MUSIC " and was signed by the legendary music mogul John Hammond at CBS records. John Hammond was considered the father of the music industry and had discovered most of the great legends from Duke Ellington, Bessie Smith, Billy Holliday, Count Basie, Aretha Franklin, George Benson ,and Bob Dylan to name a few. SJJ and Bruce Springsteen (the boss) were the last artist discovered by John Hammond before his retirement, making them both a part of music history. SJJ's album "My Music" was released in Europe and made some noise there but never made it to the US. He was told that he was ahead of his time! Disappointed in the outcome of his debut, SJJ went into early retirement as a recording artist, and began to work with local bands in the New York area. He began to write poetry for G. village underground companies, and became involved in theatre on Broadway, ultimately overseeing the music dept. for Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee's Open Cage Theatre in Mt. Vernon, N.Y. Although he was a part of music history, SJJ still remained behind the scenes. After a couple of years of creative frustration, SJJ relocated to Los Angeles where some famous cousins (The Gap Band) were making their mark. Still in retirement, he played at a local church on Sundays and taught music at a Christian school during the week. For the past few years SJJ has been listening to and critiquing today's music with his middle school children, and the Hip-Hop explosion has inspired SJJ to write and be creative again." I often hear my style and sound being used in the song samples on radio and t.v., and I am honored that the Hip-Hop culture appreciates My Music"! Today, TTheory Music is proud to present SJJ’s contribution to today's music titled "UNRESTRICTED". Unrestricted represents freedom. No walls, No ceilings, No bars, No chains, No wars, No tears, No pain, no frustrations or worries in a relationship, etc. In a world where people, places, situations, and things constantly dictate our time, it's wonderful to be able to encircle our space with the ambience of unrestricted music, which speaks to the inner-child! Out of all the gifts that God gave us, music is the one that leads us back to him! The power of ONE has been the topic of many discussions lately and we have adopted it as our last word. After all, if you know anything about the trumpet, then you know that it only plays one note at a time. Every note counts. Just ask Gabriel!!! SJJ is back!!!  P.S. There's new music just added in Aug.2010.  "The Gospel Truth" is the latest single, checvk it out!   One Love  Ttheorymusic............