Origin: Hamilton, Ontario, 🇨🇦
Jude (Judith Marian) Johnson. Jazz singer, songwriter, children's entertainer, b Hamilton 6 Jan 1954. Jude Johnson attended the Sheridan College School of Design in Oakville and briefly studied with Lee Hepner at McMaster University, before embarking on a successful career as a jazz and blues singer based in Hamilton, Ont. A full-time musician since 1980, Johnson has sung on over 50 recordings as back-up to such artists as Raffi and Stan Rogers, and has released eight solo recordings including Reflected Space (1981, North Track NT-05), Flirtin' (1984, Cole Harbour CHM-002), and Jazz & Blues Straightup (1989, Straight Up SU-001). Diversifying in 1983 to entertain children, in 1985 she founded the MAD Creative Arts School. She has performed as far afield as the Frostbite Festival in Whitehorse, YT, and sang in Hamilton in 1999 with the National Academy Orchestra under Howard Cable. In 1992 Johnson received the Canada 125 medal and was named Hamilton's Woman of the Year in the Arts; the following year she was honoured with the Hamilton Arts Award. She is the daughter of the baritone Bernard Johnson.
Her jazz/blues voice is... "one of those dark strong instruments that she can shade or shout, whisper or cry with at will... breathtaking".
Hugh Fraser - The Hamilton Spectator
Jude Johnson has developed into one of Canada's finest vocalists and performers for both adults and children. She has released seven recordings including her most recent This Heart of Mine featuring Carl Horton on piano, guests Jackie Washington on vocals, Carlos del Junco on harmonica, Brian Lee Griffith on guitar and the string quartet "Panache". This classy, entertaining CD is a collection of classic jazz compositions performed with intimacy, grace and joy. Her other recordings include: Reflected Space, Flirtin' (1985), Jazz & Blues Straightup (1989), and Moontime Howl (1995), as well as a children's recording entitled Singin' and a Swingin (1993). Her recording One Voice is a collection of spiritual and inspirational songs celebrating the universal language of music. Jude has also been the unseen voice on many radio and TV commercials, been featured on CBC radio and sung on over 40 albums with such artists as Raffi, Scott Merritt and Stan Rogers, and performed across Canada at countless festivals, schools, libraries and community events.
Jude is Hamilton's Special Music Ambassador as well as Woman of the Year in the Arts 1992. She has also received the Canada 125 Medal for Community Service and the Hamilton Arts Award 1993. In 1996, Jude performed for His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales during his visit to Canada. She also musically represented Hamilton in welcoming Governor General Romeo Leblanc and Prime Minister Jean Chrètien. Jude authored and performed the song "Our Millennium" for the Hamilton-Wentworth Volunteer Centre and the Hamilton Community Foundation's local initiative for the country-wide Millennium New Year celebrations. Jude has also been honoured with many Ontario Arts Council awards for her music.
As the founder and director of the MAD Creative Arts School, Jude has helped children explore their uniqueness and creativity through music, art and drama for seventeen years. Jude performs concerts in many schools in the region on a regular basis. Her strong environmental concerns are reflected in her Earth, Sky & Sea concerts, and her children's story The Garden Angel. The Silly Singin' and a Swingin' Children's Show has also become a favourite across the country for children of all ages. Her creative music workshops explore rhythm, melody, and "the song in your heart".
Jude Johnson is keeping the jazz and blues classics "alive and kicking" with her recordings and performances. She captures her personal visions through songwriting. Her song, "Show Me The Power" was commissioned for CAVEAT's Conference on Violence, and was featured on a special video shown at the United Nations. Her single "Turn a Light On" was released across Canada and Europe as a special commission from the Ronald MacDonald House Foundation. Many camps and children's performers have learned her "McDonald's" song, making it a kid's classic! "Rock My Child", for the Hamilton AIDS Network, was showcased on MUCH MUSIC and Vision TV. Her song "Heartbeat of Community" is a stirring anthem for Canada's unity. Two of her original songs ("You Know You're Blue" and "Wilderness of Love") are featured in the soundtrack of the feature film Boulevard starring Rae Dawn Chong and Lou Diamond Phillips.
Jude would be a powerful addition to your musical lineup. Her versatility and professional excellence would enhance all facets of your programming. She truly brings out the "song in your heart". Jude Johnson is available as a duo, trio, quartet or quintet to accommodate program budgets. She is a member of SOCAN and Local 293 of the AF of M.