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Sassy Songwriters

March 31, 2017 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm EDT


Critically Acclaimed and Award winning songwriters Carrie Johnson, Libby Johnson and Julia Russo performing together, and will move you with songs of love, loss, joy and redemption. This is an intimate acoustic performance allowing the audience a glimpse into the songwriting process with story telling, laughter and execution of a song! Join these “sassy” women, who, with a lifetime of songwriting and performing experience will leave you breathless from an unforgettable night of music!

“One of my earliest memories is dancing around the living room while my Dad played “Scotland The Brave” on his bagpipes, or my Mom strummed Joan Baez on guitar – my sisters and I singing along…this is the house I grew up in – lots of music, all the time. There was so much diversity – Beatles, Beethoven, Bluegrass and Broadway so when people ask what my musical influences are it’s really hard to pin that down!”

Carrie Johnson is a singer/songwriter whose own music crosses several genres – pop, rock and country but always with her signature style – strong vocals, memorable melodies, story telling lyrics and dynamic rhythm guitar playing. “I always put myself in a song and draw on real life experiences, usually they’re my own…”

And there is a lifetime to draw upon. After attending Boston’s Berklee College of Music, Carrie headed to New York where she became a professional background and jingle singer, honing her craft as a songwriter alongside her sister Libby. They formed the critically acclaimed band 22 Brides and released five albums on the Zero Hour/Universal Record labels. They were featured artists three times in Billboard Magazine, guests on the World Cafe, broke their hit song, “Another Distant Light” on 99X out of Atlanta, GA and toured the US and Canada extensively from concert halls to music festivals. “Touring with my sister and our band? Those are some of the best memories of my life”.

Carrie then moved from New York to Phoenix to Blacksburg, VA where she recorded her first solo album, Geographical Fix. Finally landing in Hartford, CT she co-produced her second CD, Move The Sun with Daniel Wise. “Life came at me so fast during that time. What parent is ever prepared for their child to be diagnosed with a life threatening illness? My daughter Julia (then s
even years old) was one of the youngest in the country to have bi-lateral ovarian cancer. She fought the battle through chemotherapy and surgery and today is a happy 19 year old. “I wrote ”Little Bird” to capture the lonely 4:00am moment in the hospital, and founded The Little Bird House Concert Series as a way to give back all the kindness and support that was given to us while Julia was ill. Donations raised from those concerts go to various pediatric cancer research hospitals. Move The Sun is my “pay it forward” album – it’s also a snapshot of my life that I documented with emotional songs.”

Since that time, life has changed dramatically for Carrie, and it is reflected on her latest release, Strength To Move. Filled with vibrant country/pop crossover tunes, the album sings of loss, redemption and renewal. “I’m in a much happier place now, but there has been so much change over the years. I want people to know that you can go down to the depths of despair and rise victoriously – these songs are the latest stories of my life and I'm excited to share them with everyone.”

Carrie is currently involved in Artist Development, performs with her band and co-writers, writes and produces in the Hartford, CT area. She is putting the finishing touches on a new EP to be released sometime in 2017. “The one thing I can’t do is stop a song…it’s like trying to stop a moving train!”

For more information on Carrie Johnson, visit her website here.


“Spellbinding” -Philadelphia Inquirer “…beautiful, bittersweet…her songs move seamlessly from searching and yearning to bruised and ominous….” -New York Daily News “Johnson’s vocals are versatile- alternately tough and tender, changing as the song demands, and offering something to please every listener” -Performing Songwriter “…an unexpected treasure….one of the best debuts of the year…”Steve Greenlee, Boston Globe

Libby Johnson started recording her follow-up to 2006’s acclaimed “Annabella,” between the trails (or trials) of living as a troubadour artist, moving from New York to a rural setting and back again, family life and various activist projects.  In January 2010 Perfect View was released on the Wrong Records label.  Sometimes wistful in tone, Perfect View’s sweeping moods encompass such life changes.

Prior to “Annabella,” you may have remembered Libby from dreamy indie electric folk outfit 22 Brides, who, with her sister Carrie Johnson released three critically-acclaimed albums on the Zero Hour/Universal labels and toured extensively.  Her myriad of musical experiences and influences seem to intersect here at Perfect View.

Libby’s impeccable tunefulness, gorgeous melodies, and dynamic songwriting hinges between dramatic and gentle, and takes traditional coffeehouse folk to another level. There is an expansiveness to the music, fully realized and focused on Perfect View, amalgamating the ornate orchestration of Sufjan Stevens, the intimate folksiness of a Gillian Welch and the honey-textured, jazz-tinged and melodic voice of an early Bonnie Raitt. Selections from Perfect View can currently be heard on NPR’s World Café, XM Café, and XM Loft.

Born in Germany to American parents, Libby grew up in the Northeast and spent summers with her grandparents in Alabama and Virginia. Her mother, Carolyn was an accomplished pianist and folksinger who played Child ballads, Dylan and Joan Baez and gave Libby her first guitar lesson around 11. Her father, Bob, played the bagpipes and loved Beethoven. Libby lives in New York’s East Village with her husband and two children.

Visit Libby’s website, https://libbyjohnsonmusic.com/


Julia Russo is a singer/songwriter from the Hartford, CT area who is quickly generating critical acclaim. Having performed since a child, Julia starting songwriting several years ago and dropped her first full length CD of original music, “Hearts In The Water” in May 2016. Since then, Julia won The IMEA (International Music and Entertainment) Award for Best Folk Album of 2016, is the Connecticut nominee for Best Artist 2017 at the upcoming Pavoh Music Awards in Boston, MA (February, 2017) and is already a winner of the New England Pavoh award for young artists. Julia has been featured on Connecticut Style Acoustic Cafe (TV) and performs in the Connecticut and New England area regularly. Julia has just returned from her first tour in London, England where she graced the stage at some of the most iconic venues – The AllyCat, Dublin Castle and The Boogaloo to name a few. She returns to London in June, 2017 for her next tour. Additionally, Julia will be a featured artist on May 18, 2017 at The Peace/Love Storytellers Festival in Rhode Island sponsored by Alex and Ani.

With a truthfulness in her lyrics, a beautiful lilt in her voice and unstoppable energy on stage, Julia Russo will hold you captivated from song to song. Inspired by the indie-rock, Americana influences she loves, Julia Russo is a fresh and original recording artist who will draw you into your heart!

Listen to Julia’s music here.


March 31, 2017
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm EDT