Having fronted Colchesterâ€™s organ driven rock â€˜nâ€™ roll band FuzzFace for some years, Ady Johnson now embarks on a solo acoustic project.
This is not your usual bland acoustic, â€˜woe is meâ€™, introspective fair. Johnson writes dynamic songs which range from heartfelt whispers to aggressive, soulful hollers! His distinctive vocals, deft guitar work and a sympathetic backing band, make Johnsonâ€™s recent recordings sound like Graham Coxonâ€™s Spinning Top colliding with Tom Waitsâ€™ Bone Machine. Add some Steve Marriot vocals to the mix and youâ€™re someway to describing Ady Johnsonâ€™s sound.
Ady Johnson performs live regularly and has played numerous festivals including headlining the Castle Stage at Colchester Free Festival this summer. Stand out solo gigs include supporting bands such as Coronership, The Godfathers, the Telescopes and Tom Hingley, and playing live in a maze in the middle Londonâ€™s Trafalgar Square.
The particular highlight of the year so far came in October when Ady was busking for the first time in his life to the queue at 6Fest, the London festival organised by Love 6 Music to celebrate its successful campaign to save BBC 6 Music from closure. During his busking session he was approached by organisers and asked to perform at the Festival after one of the acts had not turned up. An opportunity not to be missed, Ady then played the opening set of the 6Fest. This experience was summarised on the day by DJ Shaun Keaveny, â€œWhat a story that isâ€¦ thatâ€™s typical of 6 Musicâ€.
Ady Johnson – Tell The Worry Dolls
Ady Johnsonâ€™s debut solo album â€˜Tell The Worry Dollsâ€™ was recorded live where possible with a backing band at Long Track Studios through an old Neve mixing console John Peel used at Maida Vale Studios.
The album is inspired from Johnsonâ€™s personal life experiences and deal with a range of subjects and emotions that we are all confronted by, or can relate to. This is reflected in the song writing and the honesty and conviction of his performances. Johnsonâ€™s songs are dynamic and diverse; he can pull on the heart strings but also brings balls to the acoustic canon.
Ady said, â€œEach of the songs express some kind of worry, concern or angst, and in committing these songs to the album, I like to think I’ve finally completed the cathartic process you go though as a singer/songwriter- much like the folklore which surrounds the Guatemalan Worry Dolls; you tell the dolls your worries before you go to sleep and in the morning you find that they’ve taken them away.â€
The Official Album Release party for ‘Tell The Worry Dolls’ takes place on Sunday 19th December at Colchester Arts Centre. Organised by Andy Winmill from Camand and Ben Howard of Cool Publicity, the event will see ‘Tell The Worry Dolls’ performed live by Ady Johnson and his backing band in album running order, for the very first time. Support on the night comes from Lady Bird And The Larks, and Animal Noise.
‘Tell The Worry Dolls’ is available on CD and Digital Download from 17th January 2011.