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July 27

In Memory: Michael Johnson, 5 Things that Will Make us ‘Bluer than Blue’

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A cloud of sadness casts over the music industry after another legend meets his demise. Singer-songwriter Michael Johnson left this world on July 25, Tuesday, after battling a long-standing illness. He was 72. Johnson’s name soared on the music charts during the 1970’s and the 1980’s. He is most widely known for his hit songs, Bluer than Blue, Give Me Wings, and The Moon is Still Over Her Shoulder. All his songs were adored by fans for its ability to clearly reflect matters of the heart.

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In Memory: Michael Johnson, 5 Things that Will Make us 'Bluer than Blue' 1

Apart from his music, the best way to remember such a musically brilliant fellow is through reliving all the good things and pieces of memories that make him more special in the eyes of his fans and loved ones.

1. He learned how to play the guitar in Barcelona.

Johnson studied classical guitar in Barcelona in 1966. He learned the art of the guitar with Graciano Tarrago, a renowned guitarist. Having honed his skills in songwriting, singing, and playing the guitar, it is no wonder why he prefers to perform alone. He claims himself to be a “soloist at heart”. For Johnson, he prefers the spontaneity of a show that can morph into the moment.

2. In the early days, his singing broke international ground.

The Bluer than Blue singer was the winner of an international folk singing contest in 1964. He won a record deal with Epic Records, where he sold about 23 copies. According to Johnson, he was sent a royalty check for 11 cents which he framed. He also still remembers where thirteen of the records he sold with Epic Records is.

3. He’s an amazing actor.

Aside from singing, songwriting, and playing the guitar, Michael Johnson is also talented in acting. In 1969, he performed off-Broadway in New York. He even got to tour for a year in “Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris.

4. He was exposed to music at a tender age.

Like many other exceptional musicians, Michael Johnson began honing his skills during his teenage days. He was only thirteen when he first played the guitar. Since then, he never stopped learning new ways on how he can be better at what he does. Soon, Johnson found himself being really engrossed in singing, playing, writing and recording that those were the only activities that took most of his time. He took a small step toward his dream and from then on, he simply never felt like quitting.

5. Making people smile is his second favorite hobby.

While music may be his first love, Johnson’s next best favorite thing to do is to entertain people. In an interview, he calls himself a showman. He shares that he enjoys conversing with people and does not mind being the jester of the crowd. When performing, he is always compelled to move the audience through his music. Otherwise, if he cannot achieve that, he finds no purpose in being on-stage.

A singer as memorable, lovable, and gifted as Michael Johnson will surely remain in the hearts of his fans forever. No one could ever replace such a humble, funny, and talented singer like him. But perhaps the newer generations of singers can take some serious pointers from the legacy that he left behind.


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Bluer Than Blue|death|Michael Johnson


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