been a fan of Red Johnson's ever since I first heard "There's A
Grand Ole Opry Show Playing Somewhere" he made a hit for Capitol
Records. This guy is a natural country singer. He's a natural
country guitar picker. He's a natural country songwriter. I say
this because Red Johnson knows how to write a 'story' in a song,
and his lead track on this CD is incredibly good. "The Old Man At A
Table" is one of those 'story' songs that will bring a tear to your
eye, and at the same time give the listener one of the best 'tips'
of living a full life, anyone is likely to ever hear. What's also
neat about Red Johnson is his ability to get a good 'attention
getter' cover on his CD's. This particular one has an old man at a
table, and it just happens to be Red Johnson. I can't believe how I
was so simply moved by the way this wonderful old-timey traditional
country CD was put together. Red's voice stands out in the mix,
just as it used to be in 'real' country music. Not devoured and
hidden in loud outrageous noisy instrumental music makers. On the
contrary, this Red Johnson CD is mixed just right all the way
through. That's so important today, because Red is recording for an
older buying market, and he knows exactly what he's doing in making
this work for him. I'm not sure where he cut this, but the studio
work is fine, so are the musicians though they are mostly better
known playing in the Rio Grande Valley and around Minnesota than
they are in the recording studio. On lead guitar is Chuck Peterson
and Kenny Nelson. On harmonica is Don Grubb. On steel-guitar (and
quite well done) is Kermit Clarin. On Acoustic guitar, bass, drums,
strings, piano, and lead vocals is Red Johnson. Judy Fasse helped
him out on a couple songs with some vocal harmony. Red has won some
accolades at our festival in LeMars, Iowa, and this CD is definitely
going to the Rural Roots Music Commission for "Traditional Country
CD of the Year" award. Good luck Red I hope you get it, you are
very deserving. Red makes his home (in the summer time) in
Minnesota, and that makes Minnesota a very lucky state. We will
hope to be seeing him at the LeMars Festival in 2012, but he is also
very popular on the Minnesota State Fair. Not my cup of tea to get
too involved in political issues, but Red's "Pardon Me For Looking
In" hits the nerve just right. This could go 'viral' as they say on
the Internet. All and all this is one of Red Johnson's best 'new'
projects. Highly recommended to anyone who really likes their
country......"Country." Visit Red at his website
Tom Caine Reviews Veteran's Day and Red Johnson
[Ed: I received a wonderful three-song CD from RED JOHNSON that I've just got to
RED JOHNSON is a rare and gifted songwriter. He's also a wonderful entertainer, but I want
to talk about his songwriting here.
About three years ago I found RED's song "Veteran's Day" on his website. The
first few times I listened to it I got goose bumps - the song that does that to me is rare
indeed! I learned it and Candi and I started closing one of our shows with it. I remember
how pleased RED was when I told him about all the standing ovations his song got. I still
do this song around Veteran's Day and some other national holidays. In fact, I just did it
last Wednesday at our Quiet Village II jam session.
The CD RED just sent me had three songs on it: "Veteran's Day," "United We
Stand" and "Circles On The Wall."
I've just got to tell you that "Circles On The Wall" is another goosebump
raiser! It is certainly at least as moving as "Veteran's Day!" Do yourselves a
huge favor and do whatever it takes to get a tape or CD from RED with these songs on it.
In the unlikely event that there is still somebody in the Valley who doesn't know RED, or
at least know of him - I'm going to type a bio I received with his CD. This way, you can
all meet him.
Also, if there are any Activities Directors or other talent buyers browsing here - if you
haven't yet booked RED JOHNSON's show, do it now while you're thinking about it. You can
reach him through his web site.
The bio on RED follows. -- Tom
Tom Caine is Editor and Owner of "RIO GRAND VALLEY MUSICIANS & JAMMERS SERVICES http://www.rgvms.com/
A note to Tom from Red, You are a un-biased treasure to Country Music and the help you
extend to the Independent Musician. It is with great pride I post you letter.
Please do yourself a favor and visit Tom at his site: http://www.rgvms.com/
Biography of a Country Music Singer/Songwriter
At six or seven years old, at his boyhood home in northern Minnesota, this young boy could
hardly wait for the next live radio show out of Fargo, North Dakota called "The Texas
Ranger," who would sing western songs with a few of the most popular country songs
mixed in. This was enough to spark a life long love for music that would only amplify as
the years wore on.
He would try to be the first to get the Sears Catalog when it came in the mail and he
would go directly to the musical instrument pages and dream of one day having one of those
beautiful Silvertone guitars. On his 10th birthday, a calf was born and his dad gave it to
him as a birthday present. For the next two years he nurtured that calf until it was a
full-grown steer, which sold for $118.00. Red then ordered his dream guitar from the Sears
Roebuck Catalog, and it was never to leave his side throughout his teens, through his
courting years and into the military where he learned to play better from the southern
boys who also played guitars. They called him "The Minnesota Hillbilly." When he
was discharged from military service he began playing professionally and still does in
Minnesota during the summer and Texas in the winter.
A singer-songwriter for over 50 years, Red wrote his first song when he was twelve years
old. He said, "It sounded like it might have had a Hank Williams sound to it."
Writing most of his own songs, Red co-wrote "There's A Grand Ole Opry Show Playing
Somewhere" with Bud Auge in 1964. He recorded it on a small label (Hep) that he was
half owner of. That song received such heavy airplay that it was picked up by Capitol
Records and was released on their "The World Of Country Music" album, a
two-record album of 24 top country hits with such well-known artists as: Buck Owens,
Ferlin Husky, Jean Shepard, Hank Thompson, Tex Ritter, Glen Campbell, Roy Clark and
About the same time a friend of Red's - Dave Dudley - released "Six Days On The
Road." Dave, Bud Auge and Red co-wrote a song called "Taxi Cab Driver"
which was included in Dave Dudley's "Six Days On The Road" album for Mercury
One of Red's trademark songs, "Veteran's Day," was used in a tribute to the 20
sailors killed in Vietnam aboard the USS Newport News when the gun turret exploded. In
October 2003, Red and his song "Veteran's Day" received a "Thank You"
recognition award from the captain and crew of the attack submarine USS Minneapolis-St.
After 9-11, Red wrote "United We Stand," feeling the American people had
something to say to Bin Laden. Also, in honor of the Vietnam Veteran's Wall he wrote
"Circles On The Wall." One of his best yet! You have to hear it!
Red publishes his own material through his own publishing house, Count Music BMI and does
most recordings at Cedardale Studios in Mora, Minnesota where they are produced and
arranged by John Voit and Terry Nord. Red currently has six CDs and tapes to match,
entitled: "My Collection," "Veteran's Day," "A Good Ol' Country
Song," "United We Stand," "40 Years with Joe Tishmack" and
"The Local Entertainer" which is a collection of 21 songs from his vinyl records
from 1964 to 1975, enhanced and put on CD.
Red is retired and married over 50 years to his high school sweetheart, Flo. They live in
Champlin, Minnesota and have two children, four grandchildren and one great granddaughter.
This authorized biography was written by: Friend & fan, Wyatt Wadzink, Wonder Works,
RED JOHNSON's website: http://www.mkoc.com/RedJohnson/
(The MKOC stands for "My Kind Of Country"
Red's email: firstname.lastname@example.org