Adieu 2013!

I am sitting here in my parent’s comfortably appointed living room, looking out onto the winter wonderland that is the countryside outside of Ottawa. Although not a religious person, Christams is always a time of family togetherness for me, when I have the time to take stock of the past year and think about all that I have to be grateful for.

Of course this year has been particularly special, as I had the joy of welcoming my first child into the world, Charles Warren McGough Johnston. He’s named Charlie based on all the creative Charlies from Kaufman, Byrd and Harper that me and my wife are so fond of. Warren comes from Warren Zevon, the singular American songwriter with the genius pen and fiery temper that made him such a remarkable person. We can only hope that Charlie will leave his mark on this world in a no less formidable fashion.

A Time to Give Thanks

Once again I have to give a big holiday shout out to greenland productions for believing in my project and sticking me on a couple of pretty big shows in 2013. Highlights included opening a couple of dates for Milow at the Petit Imperial in Quebec City and Lion D’Or in Montreal. The show opening for Wakey!Wakey! last January was a bright spot, with many CDs sold and new fans made. It was a thrill to open up for Scotland’s Big Country at Petit Campus and watch them put on a stadium worthy performance. It was an inspiration meeting Mike Peters, Jools and the kids, and learning about all their amazing work with Love, Hope, Strength. Sometimes in life you meet truly inspiring people that light a light inside of you and push you to be a better person.

The Residency

Probably the highlight of the year for me has been the ongoing success of our monthly residency at Bistro de Paris. Claud Legault, Eva Stone and the whole BDP staff have been amazing to us, and we have had some truely beautiful nights of rock and roll heaven.

I just wanted to take a moment to give a shout out to the artists that have participated so far in these magical nights. It really means everything to me that the night has attracted so much interest from the local artistic community, and each of you brought something unique and amazing to the event: Colin Moore, Seb Black, Michael Mooney and The Yellow Jacket Avenger: stay golden boys!

Next year we hope to keep the Residency strong with tribute nights to Ryan Adams, Warren Zevon, TPOH, British Pub Rock and more! So come out and be part of the vibrant Montreal music scene, and if you are an artist that wants to participate get in touch!

I will leave you with a rendition of Springsteen’s classic “Backstreets” from the second edition of our residency. this is an epic tale of friendship and striving, which serves as my annual reminder that we can all be something bigger.



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