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Exploring Life & Business with Jeremy Johnson of Johnson Talent Management

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jeremy Johnson.

Hi Jeremy, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I was raised 8 miles down a dirt road in a small town of 500 people in rural Canada. Doing chores, feeding cattle, driving tractors, and listening to country music was a big part of my life. I loved music for as long as I can remember, I started off by tagging along to small gigs that our family neighbor and friend, who is a brilliant singer, would perform at, carrying equipment, setting up, tearing down, and loving being any part of it all.

Fairs, festivals, and community events, she did it all and I was right there learning anything I could. Growing up, we were so far from the ‘big city’ I didn’t know anything about a career in music, so it was a long journey to get there, but it was always a passion and a hobby.

After I left home, I went to university, traveled for a while, and eventually ended up in Los Angeles attending UCLA. That’s when I decided to take my passion and turn it into my profession. It was a big leap of faith and that was in 2014. In 2015, my sister Janelle, who is a music publicist, decided to work together to launch our artist management company, Johnson Talent Management. Our first signing was an emerging female country artist Kendra Kay. Since joining our roster, she has achieved many awards, including earning the MCMA Fan’s Choice Award for three years in a row, the Female Artist of the Year twice and signing a worldwide agency deal with Sakamoto Agency. It was special because she was also raised in our hometown, so our values of community, family, and music seemed perfectly aligned.

From there, we started to see success and growth, as we defined it for ourselves. We’re excited about the momentum that is happening as we grow, and have signed priority artists that we feel have an incredibly special talent, and an important story to share. This includes Open Road Recording Artist Dustin Bird, and British Country Music Association Nominee Katy Hurt, who recently earned a #1 iTunes Single in the United Kingdom.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
There have been, and continue to be so many obstacles and challenges. The biggest hurdle is simply learning how the business works, and overcoming the self-doubt that arises. There is no handbook for the music business, and so many circumstances have multiple ways they can be handled, and no one way is the “right” way.

Along with this, it is very much a people business, and so getting to know people is so important, and sometimes really fun or really disheartening, in a way that can knock you down or build you up. Some days, just staying in the game is hard, and other days it feels like we have won all over the place. So we have really worked hard to define our values, why we do this, and what kind of people and company we want to be. We work to be artist-friendly and business-centered company, while creating experiences that bring us closer to our family, our artists, and ultimately the most important people in all of this, the fans.

Once we understood that with more clarity, it did become a little bit easier to foster resiliency within ourselves, our company and to be able to listen to, guide, and support our artists with their creative, business, and personal challenges. We really learned we first had to be right within ourselves, before we could have a vision for an artist’s career, and find the pathways to bring that vision to life.

That has been the biggest challenge, but it also has given us the strength and knowledge to connect with industry, artists, and fans in a genuine and meaningful way.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
We are a family-run artist management company that works in country music.

Who else deserves credit in your story?
My sister and company co-founder Janelle Johnson. My neighbor and friend (and original inspiration) Leona Joseph. My parents, Mary and Jim Johnson, always believed in my music career.

My partner Roger Medina, supports me in every possible way.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Melanie VanHeyst

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1 Comment

  1. Heather

    November 18, 2021 at 5:48 pm

    What a great introduction to a rising star! Jeremy is a “hometown hero”that SO many of us are proud to cheer on from up North! Congratulations to Jeremy, Janelle and all the artists and talent lucky enough to work with these gems!

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