Known and appreciated in Nashville, around the nation and internationally, jazz saxophonist Joe Johnson is being presented with awards and acknowledgements as a testament to his years of musical contributions to Music City. First, the 15th annual Jefferson Street Jazz and Blues Festival is presenting Johnson with its first-ever Jeffersonian Award.
In presenting this award Sharon Hurt, executive director of JUMP, said: “With his masterful mix of musical venues and genres, Joe Johnson has encouraged music lovers of all ages to expand their musical horizons. He has sustained and enriched the musical history of our Music City, and has been a force in advancing all genres of music with his forays into club ownership, including ‘Jazz & Jokes,’ once a mecca for live music of all kinds in Nashville.”
In addition, the Tennessee Jazz & Blues Society will present Johnson with an award to reflect its appreciation for the many concerts he has performed for the society and jazz fans over the years.
A 6 pm reception, with these tributes to Joe Johnson, will be held Wednesday, June 18, at the Agenda, 609 9th Avenue, S., Nashville, Tenn. 37203.
Joe has played on more than 400 commercial and jingle dates working for major clients such as Target, Ford Motor Company, Budweiser Beers, Taco Bell, Coke, and Mattel Toys just to name a few. He has opened national concerts for or shared the stage with a ‘Who’s Who’ of musical mega stars such as: Aretha Franklin, Anita Baker, Sade, Vanessa Williams, Gerald Levert, Jamie Foxx, KEM, Roy Ayers, Boney James, Phil Perry, Melissa Morgan, Doc Powell, Will Downing, Take 6, Donald Byrd, Cameo, Kim Waters, Phil Perry, Miles Jaye, Alex Bugnon, Kirk and Kevin Whalum, Peabo Bryson, Gearld Veasely, Angela Bowfill, the O’Jays, Barbara Mandrell, Howard Hewitt, Kindred, Karen Briggs, American Idols Kimberly Locke, Dr. Bobby Jones, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, and a host of others.
Most recently Johnson was included in gospel music videos for top selling artist Smokie Norful and Donald Lawrence and just completed a cross country arena tour playing for sold out audiences nationwide with Kirk Franklin, Donnie McClurkin, and Yolanda Adams on the gospel extravaganza ‘Hopeville.’