On November 15, 2009, TTBTGH & SBFRR are proud to present the return of pianist/singer/songwriter/Skydigger/all around good guy Michael Johnston (http://www.michaeljohnston.ca), live in my living room!
Johnston’s shows are wildly entertaining, moving, and memorable (I know, I’ve seen a lot of them!). His debut album, Curious Heart, came out in 2005, not long after he’d moved to Winnipeg. That album landed atop every list I made that year for statistics (most played song, album, artist, etc.) and he was unilaterally named my Artist of the Year. That album is a magnificent debut, filled with memorable melodies, touching lyrics, and some stellar special guests. Some artists get special guests to come in and do backups or play an instrument, but Johnston wrote the songs and then turned some of them over to the likes of Reid Jamieson, Oh Susanna, and Andy Maize of Skydiggers to sing. The results are magical collaborations that show that Johnston, early into his promising career, could stand alongside seasoned veterans.
In the past couple of years, Johnston has been a full member of Skydiggers, a now-legendary roots-rock combo (http://skydiggers.com), breathing new life into a band that has stood the test of time after more than 20 years atop the Canadian music industry (such as it is!) His writing, playing, and singing is a huge part of Skydiggers’ successful 2008 album, City of Sirens, and Michael will be at the piano when the band makes its long-awaited return to the West End Cultural Centre (a venue that the band almost destroyed when its exhuberent fans came frighteningly close to plunging through the floor in the 90s! We’ve been assured that the new building faces no fear of destruction, although an exciting, energetic show is guaranteed!)
In the meantime, he’s been hard at work on many new songs, including co-writes with the likes of Andy Maize, Stephen Fearing, Chris Difford (of legendary band Squeeze) and many more, some of which we will hear for the first time on November 15! I’m hoping to convince him to put out a second record featuring some of those great songs one of these days, and I’m hoping that you will come help with my efforts.
Although he spent years in Winnipeg, Michael Johnston hasn’t played his songs to a Winnipeg audience in quite some time. Whenever he does, people leave raving, smiling, and looking forward to seeing him again. I promise you, friends, this will be a night you will enjoy.
It will be an EARLY show, as it is a Sunday night. Show will start at 7 and you should be safely in your bed (or living room or whatever location you prefer) around 10. We enjoy having folks over for dinner, so anyone interested in a pot-luck style pre-show meal is welcome to join us around 5:30 (or anywhere thereafter). Admission is by donation, with all funds going directly to this talented performer. $15-20 is suggested and appreciated. We are very family friendly (bring the kids), very welcoming (if you don’t know us well or haven’t been here before, you are indeed welcome), and your company is much appreciated.
Please get back to me to confirm a seat as soon as possible. Feel free to forward this email to anyone who might be interested in attending, and do let me know if you have any questions.
Hope you can join us!