18-year-old South Londoner Jay Johnson combines soul and story telling craft to produce an introspective yet universal sound. Born in Nigeria, Jay grew up in the cultural hub of South East London. He picked up his first guitar at age 13 and never looked back. Following his debut video ‘Midnight Men’, we have the premiere for his new video ‘Island’ above.
“It’s a song about a realisation I had,” comments Jay. “The lyrics are fairly self-explanatory; it’s amazing to think what one can achieve without the help of others. That being said everyone needs a bit of help from time to time.”
A diverse triumvirate of Bob Dylan, Paolo Nutini, and Ben Harper are cited as influences, but it was the music of Ben Howard that finally convinced Jay to pursue his dream. “Discovering his Every Kingdom album was definitely a milestone in my journey through music.”
With a recent slot at Brighton’s Great Escape Festival, and an unscheduled performance at Secret Sessions Live last month he introduces ‘The Dark Matters’ EP – important music from a millennial musician giving the lie to his generation’s reputation as lazy, entitled snowflakes.
Catch Jay live:
June 19th Nambuka, London