Johnny Awesome & The Missing Digits
Johnny, from Johnny Awesome & The Missing Digits, is a solo acoustic artist that brings a unique Tropical experience to every performance, regardless of the time of year or the venue’s geographical location.
Johnny is an experienced, responsible professional, with a rich history of nearly 11,000 live performances to his credit. Johnny is truly a million dollar musician, having earned well over that amount in the course of his career as a performing artist! It may have come in $100 at a time, but time, experience, and money all have a way of adding up. He is a lifetime performer [51 years] and has had the honor and privilege of gracing a handful of stages at large arenas that host audiences of 5,000 to 25,000 fans. He has also played about a thousand little tiki bars, dive bars, honky-tonks, biker bars and other smaller more intimate local venues from coast to coast, Key West to Bangor Maine, San Diego to Vancouver, and around the world.
February 1st, he hits the road for the 2016 Guitars & Tiki Bars Tour. It kicks off Feb 2nd in Atlanta, GA, follows the Gulf Coast south from Destin to Naples, across the state and down to Key West, then north along the Atlantic Coast to Daytona, and on to Savanna, GA, before heading back inland to Ashville, NC. His home will be On The Road until March 26.
In some areas people might call his music Trop-Rock, but Johnny calls it Good Time, Island, Rock, Country, Sailing, Ocean, Lake, and River Music! He borrows sounds styles, and songs from many genres, including classic rock, modern & old school country, alternative, mo-town, blues, roots rock, Americana, and even a touch of jazz. His prime directive is FUN and Johnny Awesome & The Missing Digits is always ready to involve the audience for a good time. His goal is to make every show a memorable social event for all, as well as a performance.
About the Missing Digits – They are not additional band members, they are actually missing digits! Johnny got in a fight with a machine on Nov 20 2014 and lost the fight. That incident left him with two fingers of his right hand missing and two more pretty seriously compromised. Though he doesn’t like to talk about the incident, he will talk about his recovery! Let it be said that he did not give up. He did not back down in the face of this tragedy. Instead, he set his mind on the goal of getting back to playing music any way he could. As a composer and a multi-instrumentalist, he was well versed on both electric and acoustic guitars, piano, keyboards, synths, and bass. He is an accomplished singer and played drums, percussion, and strings, as well as some brass and horns. Many of these instruments have either been put on hold, or fallen off the table completely, but Johnny has managed to come back strong with the acoustic and electric guitars. That is most fortunate, because those are his primary performing instruments!
To arrange a performance, he can be reached by phone at 248-240-6430 from 10 AM – 9 PM any day of the week. If he is unable to pick up, please leave a message with your name, number and any other pertinent information. He can also be reached by email. The email address is Johnny@johnnyawesome.live.
To hear a sampling of Johnny’s music, click the ‘MUSIC’ tab at the top of the page You can ‘LIKE’ and follow the band on FaceBook by clicking the ‘FACEBOOK’ box at the bottom right of the home page. There are other tabs at the top of the page for a GIG SCHEDULE, EVENTS, purchasing DOWNLOADS of his original music, PHOTOS, and ramblings [BLOG]!!!!
About the name!!! In the late 70’s, he was the bass player in a band [Bad Habit] and got labeled with the nickname ‘Johnny Awesome’ by the front man. It was a Jimmy Buffett/James Taylor kind of band and that music worked well in the early hours of the night. But, around 10:00 or 11:00, people would be getting drunk and wanting to dance. One night, after a few weeks of requests for dance music, the front man, who didn’t do any rock songs, gave Johnny his guitar, took the bass, and sent him up front to jam out. The next night, as soon as the audience called for dance music again, he turned to Johnny, handed him the guitar, and then went back to the mic and said, “Ladies and gentlemen, Johnny Awesome.”
The name has stuck ever since that night. He never imagined a name could be so tenacious, but it more or less took on a life of its own, and now he lives with it.
It’s already been said that Johnny does a solo acoustic show. What has not been said is that he has also had a recording studio for many years. He has recorded his own backing tracks for a bit over 100 classic rock songs that he can incorporate into his solo acoustic show any time the audience and situation calls for it! This is a complex and time consuming process, taking approximately 80 to 100 hours per song. It begins by recording a drum track in order to provide a framework and consistent tempo for the additional tracks that will be recorded. The second step is recording the bass guitar, and then a rhythm instrument, most often acoustic guitar or piano. At this point a lead vocal scratch track, and a scratch track of Johnny’s guitar parts are recorded, [a scratch track is one that is later erased] and the song’s skeleton is complete. From here, if the song calls for it, he adds any vocal harmonies, strings, horns, additional guitar tracks, and percussion that is necessary. With the song now complete, he could stop there, but Johnny wants his band’s recordings to sound like a live band. To achieve this, he goes back and records every part a second time, so that in the final recording, each instrument is being played in real time, with the whole band. This gives the backing tracks an expanded sense of realism, dynamics, and “liveness”. Now, nearly finished, the next step is to mix the tracks, so that all of the instruments are heard in their proper balance. The final step is to mute Johnny’s lead vocal and guitar parts [the scratch tracks mentioned earlier] then do the mastering. Mastering makes the volume match the previous tracks and matches the ‘sound’ of the ‘band’ to the previous tracks as well, maintaining consistency. At this point, the song is complete and he can convert the recording to a wave or an MP3, now giving him instant access to the “state of the art” sound he brings to the stage. When you hear him playing with the backing tracks, these recordings, as just described, are fed to the mixing board! Then, with Johnny’s guitar and lead vocals being performed live, Johnny Awesome & The Missing Digits’ sound is delivered to the audience.
To my knowledge, Johnny Awesome is the only ‘one man band’ that brings this very real, exciting process, and concept of live tracks to his performances. Johnny Awesome’s ‘Band’ is not mechanical, computer originated, background music like you might have heard from other one man bands. His backing tracks are live studio recordings of real instruments and voices. You will hear the difference!! Until you look up at the stage, you’ll swear the whole band is in the house.
Before one musical jamming weekend retreat Johnny attended was halfway through, the other musicians were calling him Johnny Jukebox. For nearly every song called out and played, Johnny already knew the song. Even when he didn’t, he had a knack for quietly listen through a progression of the music, then find a spot where he could add something to the song without getting in the way of the other players. His solo acoustic repertoire is comprised of 18 hours of material, and the previously mentioned rock show with the backing tracks adds another 10 hours of listening and dance music!
As if the 28 hours of live material in his musical ‘bag’ is not enough, Johnny doesn’t stop there. He also brings a laptop loaded with a DJ software program and 26,000 songs to his performances, covering every musical style and taste. In the event that Johnny can’t fulfill a song request himself during his live show, he will keep the requested song in mind and que it up from this collection as soon as he takes a break. Whether there are any requests or not, between his live sets Johnny spins records that fit the mood of both the venue and the audience. With this much to draw from, it is unlikely that a song would be requested that he can’t provide. Johnny does not disappear during breaks. Instead, he spins records and mingles with the patrons until it’s time to go ‘live’ again. From the ground breaking combination of a widely varied and exciting live show, plus the DJ requests during the ‘no breaks’ afternoon or evening, this is a brand new concept in the entertainment field. It bears repeating here. Johnny Awesome & The Missing Digits’ prime directive is FUN!!!!!
Thank you for your interest.
Johnny Awesome & The Missing Digits