Raised an hour drive from New Orleans in Mississippi, a state that has produced the very core of American music, Johnson grew up with a great respect for the blues, gospel, and country sound that has defined the area's artistic heritage. Joe's own family has contributed to that great legacy. His Grandfather, noted early Nashville Country artist B.J. "the D.J." Johnson, was a recording engineer, disc jockey, and Grand Ole Opry performer and many in his family were and are well known Gospel performers.
Joe began his own career in the music rich city of Hattiesburg, Mississippi in the late 90's, playing house parties and bars like The Thirsty Hippo, T Bone Records, and Gus' Cafe alongside some of the greats in the scene including Cary Hudson, Chance Fisher, Thomas Jackson, Mark Mann, This Orange Four, and countless others.
For the last 15 years Joe has called Manitou Springs, Colorado home. Almost half of that time was spent fronting "Creating a Newsense", a Southern Colorado rock and roll band which maintains an avid cult fan base despite it's dissolution in 2011. The group released four albums and played hundreds of shows during it's life while helping to establish the foundation of what is now a burgeoning Colorado Springs music community.
Following Newsense, Joe released his debut solo effort "A Time To Dance" on Pueblo, Colorado based Blank Tape Records. It was a stark departure from his previous work, a minimalist acoustic folk album recorded on reel to reel tape with songs of hope, despair, longing and loss. The album won him many new fans while also introducing some longtime listeners to a softer and more story based side of his work. In 2013 Joe recorded his second offering on Blank Tape with a band featuring some of the best players in Southern Colorado's folk and Americana music scene. "New West Sound" mixes saloon country and bluegrass gospel with dirty blues rock and lonesome ballads, all while maintaining a steady thread of lyricism and storytelling.
Joe is currently writing and recording new material and his electric guitar work with Grant Sabin & The Juke Joint Highball can be heard on the album "Bourbon & Milk", which the group released in 2017.
His music has been featured in the documentary "A Nickle and A Nail" and in the upcoming film "Making a Killing", and has been sampled and covered by artists across America as well as Europe and Australia. Joe has a genuine dedication to his family and community and a real connection to his fans.
“Melodic and untamed, pure country style..." - Tim Wenger, Colorado Music Buzz