It was the early 90s and radio stations were fighting to find the latest sound, from hip hop to alternative to country pop. In between was a plethora of styles and musicians losing the battle for airplay. And if you weren't paying attention, you would have missed one of the 90's best songwriters. Freedy Johnston is a New York-based singer-songwriter known for the craftsmanship of his songs, typically writing about heartbreak, alienation, and disappointment. His style has been labeled as Adult Alternative, Pop/Rock, Americana, Alternative/Indie Rock, and Contemporary Singer/Songwriter.
|Woody Harrelson and Randy Quaid in Kingpin|
|Album cover for "This Perfect World"|
|Album cover for "Can You Fly"|
Songs like "Western Skies," "You Get Me Lost," and "If It's True" expose inner fears and emotions. And Freedy doesn't hold back the aggressive characters from tracks like "On The Way Out," "One More Thing To Break" and "Gone To See The Fire" (a stark track hiding behind delicate music).
Freedy is an expert at understanding people and their feelings. The details are both specific and visual. You have to wonder if these songs are based on personal experiences or an amazing imagination. Either way, no one writes characters like Freedy and it wouldn't surprise me to learn that several characters in recent films have been based on his writing.
|Album cover for "Never Home"|
2001's "Right Between The Promises" brings back his rock sound with tunes such as "Waste Your Time" and "Anyone". It's a much more diverse album ranging from rock to acoustical ballads. His character studies and visual writing remain intact with tracks like "Save Yourself, City Girl," "Radio For Heartache," and "In My Dream". The album also contains a cover of Edison Lighthouse's "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" which was used for the film Shallow Hal.
It took nearly a decade for Freedy to release another studio album with 2010's "Rain On The City". In between, he had released two live albums ("Live at 33 1/3" and "Live at McCabe's Shop"), a collection of his early 4-track recordings ("The Way I Were"), and an album of covers ("My Favorite Waste of Time").
Freedy introduces "Rain On The City" with the cute but sad tune "Lonely Penny" then raises the volume with "Don't Fall In Love With a Lonely Girl" harking back to his "Never Home" sound. The acoustic guitar returns throughout the album as Freedy produces another diverse album ranging in rock, country, and folk/rock.
|Album covers for (l-r) "Blue Days Black Nights," "Right Between The Promises," and "Rain On The City"|
|Album cover for "At Least We Have Each Other"|
For more information on Freedy Johnston, visit his official website: www.freedyjohnston.com
TRIVIA: Freedy Johnston is a New York City-based singer-songwriter but is originally from Kinsley, Kansas.