|By Big Dave 9.20.10
What a fun evening of music, at the same time a memorial to Johnnie. Musicians shared their favorite Johnnie Johnson stories and their experiences working on the film. And there were quite a few! Opening the evenings music was the world class cast of Johnnie's band! guitarist Tom Maloney, bassist Jimmy Hinds, drummer Richard Hunt, trumpet Jim Rossi, saxophone Stuart Williams, and on trumpet/fluegelhorn, Oliver Johnson. On vocals, Ms. Renee Smith traded lead throughout the set with Roland Johnson, who both demonstrated their amazing showmanship. Ms. Renee certainly had the crowd spellbound by her stage presence and vocal stylings, Catch them both onstage next month at the Taste of St. Louis Blues stage!
The headlining performers - guitarist Jimmy Vivino, bassist Mike Merritt and drummer James Wormworth - were all members of the Max Weinberg 7, formerly the house band for Late Night with Conan O'Brien. Aside from adding the soundtrack to late night television, these musicians also toured with Johnnie Johnson, and are featured interviewees in Johnnie Be Good. Dona Oxford, a protege of Johnson's, performed on the piano, and she made Johnnie proud, I'm sure of it. Jonnie's wife Francis Johnson was the guest of honor, acknowledged warmly throughout the evening!
From Art Holliday
"Hopefully you've noticed the upsurge in publicity about JOHNNIE BE GOOD and Sunday's fundraiser JOHNNIE'S JAM at The Sheldon Concert Hall. Please check out the Kevin Johnson article (link below) which came out in the Post-Dispatch. Thanks, Kevin!
Kevin Johnson article | More info jjthemovie.com, sheldonconcerthall.org