Steph Johnson: Community Voice

Photo by Carey Braswell

Steph Johnson might just be the perfect voice to represent San Diego’s homeless people. Anyone who has basked in the sub-tropical breeze along that city’s gleaming waterfront boardwalk knows that homelessness is a big problem. Steph Johnson has a soft spot for ‘her people’ not only because she has a big heart, but because she grew up in a less than middle income household where she struggled to get the resources she needed to learn music.

Despite the demands of making a living and the lure of a secure job in banking, Johnson found her voice, at age 21, after losing track of time one day when she dusted off her father’s old acoustic guitar, singing and strumming for 8 hours.

The Jazz Shed had the opportunity to sit down with Steph Johnson this July to discuss her unique vocal and guitar stylings; part jazz, part soul, and more. Our conversation quickly expanded beyond just music to her blossoming career as a community builder and advocate for homeless people through a community choir she has recently co-founded and which is garnering national media attention.

Please enjoy this enticing Jazz Shed interview. Share and comment.

Enjoy this bonus track, “Be Light”, from Steph’s latest album, Music is Art: