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John Johnson was an African American prodigy who learned how to play the piano by age 4!

picture from: http://www.perfectlygrand.com/upright_and_grand_piano_covers.html
picture from:
http://www.perfectlygrand.com/upright_and_grand_piano_covers.html

I notice alot of black achievements. That is my job, to  observe and write about the accomplishmentsof black people. It’s what makes the world go round. Black people are inventors, musicians,sports players and much more. I need to hear more about what black people have done
in a good and optimistic light. Black people have been copied and have been an influential bunch of people. Thus, I must recognize a great black person named John R. Johnson.

John R. Johnson was an African American composer and arranger. He is from Jacksonville,
Florida. He learned to play the piano by age 4. He studied music at the New England Conservatory. In 1899, he and his brother James Weldon Johnson traveled to New York where
they met Robert Bob Cole. Together and assisted by James Weldon create over 150 songs over the next ten years.

Many were included into Broadway shows like Sleeping Beauty and the Best and Humpty Dumpty. Their most popular songs were “Under the Bamboo Tree, The Congo love SOng, and
Nobody’s Looking but the Owl and the Moon. Marie Cahill, Anna Held, George Primrose, and Lillian Russell made the songs popular.

Johnson and Cole produced several musical comedies like The Shoo-Fly Regiment 1906 and the Red Moon 1908, which were performed by an all black cast.

Johnson collaborated on the musical Hello Paris in 1911. A year later after Coles’ death,he performed in the London revue Come Over Here and became  the musical director of Hammerstein Opera House. Back in the states, he was a musical director of the Blackbirds of 1936 and made an appearance in Porgy and Bess, Mamba’s Daughter, and Cabin in the Sky. He
is best known for writing the music “Lift Every Voice and SIng”.

Johnson had a line up of great things he created. He was a super talented musical phenomenon.

http://www.aaregistry.org/historic_events/view/composer-extraordinaire-john-r-johnson

http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/aima/hd_aima.htm

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