Born and raised in St. Louis, Jeremiah Johnson is the voice of Mississippi River blues blending with the struggles of everyday life. He began learning guitar at age 6, drawing inspiration from his rich St. Louis blues heritage and legendary guitarists, like Alvin Lee, Eric Clapton and Hank Williams Sr. and Jr. With these influences, Johnson began building his musical foundation.
After relocating to Houston, TX, in 1999, Johnson finished in first place for three consecutive years at the Houston Regional Blues Challenges, sponsored by the Houston Blues Society. Johnson returned to St. Louis in 2009, and merged Texas style with STL blues to create the unique sound you hear today. The 10 years Johnson lived and performed in Texas changed his musical style in ways you can still hear in his music today.
In 2011, Johnson was the proud winner of the St. Louis Blues Society IBC Challenge and went on to the semifinals to represent St. Louis in Memphis, TN. One year later, Sirius XM's B.B. King’s Bluesville picked up the Jeremiah Johnson Band, where they can be heard nationwide, and they have been playing his music ever since. You can also hear Jeremiah Johnson on Touch Tunes Jukeboxes in bars/clubs across the US and on radio stations around the world.
In September 2014, Johnson filmed his docu-concert, Ride the Blues, directed by Australian Producer/Director Gary Glenn, at the historic Capitol Theater in downtown Burlington, IA. The film is live music video about Johnson’s rise to prominence, featuring intimate interview segments, still photography, guitar solos and stunning vocals. Donations from concert attendees were generously given to the theater and to the National Blues Museum, connecting Johnson’s roles of musician and music advocate.
2014 Johnson records Grind, produced by Devon Allman, features Grammy award winner Yonrico Scott on drums. Grind has been featured on SiriusXM's B.B. King’s Bluesville, and on the international radio show “Confessing the Blues”, broadcasting on 50 stations in 10 countries worldwide. Grind reached the #8 slot on the Billboard Blues Charts the week of November 7th, 2015.
Johnson follows the success of Grind with a self produced release, Blues Heart Attack, released worldwide on July 22, 2016. This unique record is a blend of Johnson’s entire musical career. “It’s a combination of our earlier works, and then Grind,” he explained. “There’s horns and keyboard reminiscent of Brand Spankn’ Blues, but also some heavy guitar driven tracks. It’s the evolution of everything in a Blues Heart Attack.” Special guest performers include Tom ‘Papa’ Ray on harmonica, and Nathan Hershey on keys. Blues Heart Attack reached #5 on the Billboard Blues Charts following its release in 2016.
March of 2018, Mike Zito will be producing Jeremiah Johnson's new CD release. The band is headed to Texas to MARZ Studio with more than two handfuls of killer new original rockin blues tunes and Mike Zito producing! Mike is currently nominated for Two BMA Awards! Mike has produced albums for Samantha Fish, Laurence Jones, Albert Castiglia and others. He tours extensively in the USA, Canada and Europe. He has been honored with multiple Blues Music Awards over the past 10 years.
Johnson performs with Benet Schaeffer (drums), Frank Bauer (sax & backing vocals), and Tom Maloney (bass), bringing the Jeremiah Johnson Band to its highest level to date. It's safe to say this is going to be a huge year for the band. 2018 is going to rock!
Benet Schaeffer has become the heart beat of the band since joining Jeremiah Johnson in 2014. Schaeffer has decades of experience and can take the music anywhere Johnson wants it to go, Not just emulating nearly any musical style, Schaeffer dominates the beat. This ability has made Schaeffer one of the most sought after drummers in the Midwestern U.S.. He has toured Internationally and recorded on multiple projects, from Folk to Rock, Funk to Zydeco and lots of good ol' St. Louis Blues.
Schaeffer grew up in the LaClede Town neighborhood of St. Louis, a groundbreaking community that created models for future integrated urban housing. This district produced numerous creative minds and boasts visits from Mick Jagger and Eric Clapton. At age five, he knew he was destined to be a percussionist, thanks to the inspiration of Ringo Starr. He was exposed to an eclectic variety of music, including blues, jazz, soul, classical, Irish, Israeli and African, and of course lots of rock ‘n’ roll.
Schaeffer describes himself as a ‘mostly self-taught’ musician, strongly guided by the artistic soul of his older brother Dominic. He learned mostly by watching and listening to other performers. He was later mentored by the late Billy Gayles, a previous drummer for Ike and Tina Turner, who "Tore (it) Up" everynight!
Benet proudly plays Dixon Cornerstone Drums, supported by Gibraltar Hardware.
Tenor saxophone performer and St. Louis native, Frank Bauer is the newest addition to the Jeremiah Johnson Band. Primarily self-taught, Bauer has previously lent his talents to STL groups All Roostered Up and Lucky Old Sons, and had the opportunity to record three albums with iconic St. Louis blues guitarist, Alvin Jett.
Bauer was inspired to pick up the sax and study music for a short period of time in grade school, thanks to his parent's eclectic musical tastes. After taking a break from performing in high school, Bauer rekindled his adoration for the tenor in his early 20's. His first lesson was with Rondo's Blues Deluxe saxophonist, Dennis "Chicago Slim" Lansing. After a few lessons, Bauer perfected his skills on his own by running scales and playing along with the radio.
Bauer began playing sporadically with the JJB based on the recommendation of drummer Benet Schaeffer. The chemistry on stage led to success in the recording studio, where Bauer was a featured performer on the band's 2016 album, Blues Heart Attack. Shortly after the record's release, Johnson invited Bauer to join the JJB full-time. Bauer has since become a power house member of the band.
Tom Maloney has been playing music for a long time. No doubt he is the most seasoned player in the band. He was born and raised in St. Louis, but has entertained music lovers all over the United States, Europe, Germany and South America. Tom is a musician’s musician. In his younger days he was known to get out on the highway with his guitar and his amp and his thumb, sometimes hitchhiking 150 miles just to get to the gig.
For 17 years, Tom had the honor to play guitar behind piano player Johnnie Johnson, (of Chuck Berry Fame and in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and also acting as Music Director for Johnnie), Oliver Sain, and Benny Smith, who gave guitar lessons to Ike Turner . Tom is featured on the 2018 release on Ruf Records, "Straitjacket" playing Bass and Slide Guitar. He joins the band as second-guitar as his busy schedule permits.