Jay-Jay Johanson (S) på House of Foundation

Jay-Jay Johanson spiller på House of Foundation ifm Møllebyen Litteraturfestival 27. august 2022

Jäje Johansson (født 11. oktober 1969), bedre kjent under scenenavnet Jay-Jay Johanson, er en svensk singer-songwriter, kjent for sin melankolske vokal. Han debuterte på nittitallet med albumene «Tattoo» og «Whiskey», sensasjonelle plater som kort tid etter ble etterfulgt av praktfulle «Gift». Siden disse har han utgitt flere album og vært virksom i flere kunstformer.

Tidligere i år og to år etter «Kings Cross» gav han ut albumet «Rorschach Test» – et jazzy landskap bygget opp på elektronisk pop og karakteristiske trip-hop-slag. «Rorschach Test» er et silkeaktig, romantisk og gjenkjennelig album. Dybden i hans skjøre crooner-disposisjon genererer nostalgiske, men også varme og imøtekommende postkort. Johanson former skjønnhet og sorg på en slik måte at den ene ikke kan forstås uten den andre.


1968 Born in Trollhättan, Sweden on October 11.
1975 Starts to play the piano.
1978 Learning clarinet and saxophone, joins a local big band. Jay-Jay has his first ever concert with his
”punk rock” band ”Nej Tack” at the ”Non Smoking Generation” festival in Skara.
1984 Moves to Jönköping and starts music college. Sees Chet Baker playing live, ”a concert that changed my life”, Jay-Jay has said in many interviews. ”At that moment I realized what I wanted to do when I grow up.” 1985 Works as a dance teacher on weekends and after school. One of the students is Erik Jansson. Jay-Jay has described him as a perfect combination of Chopin and Beastie Boys, they’ve been working together ever since. 1989 Joins the army for his 12 months of military service.
1991 Moves to Stockholm, starts Art school.
1993 Works at i-D magazine in London during the summer break. At i-D, they don’t know how to pronounce his name Jäje, so they call him Jay-Jay.
1995 Jay-Jay finishes Art school. Plays a small concert at a friends birthday party, and is discovered by an A&R from BMG Records. Starts recording in BMG’s demo studio in Sundbyberg. ”The Girl I Love is Gone””It Hurts Me So” and ”So Tell the Girls that I Am Back in Town” are the three first songs recorded.
1996 Recording and mixing sessions moves over to the Break My Heart Studio on February 3. In the studio, situated in the Stockholm archipelago, Jay-Jay is working close to Erik Jansson on piano and Magnus Frykberg on drums, Erik, Magnus and Jay-Jay have never stopped working together since. Jay-Jay signs a record deal for 6 albums with BMG on February 23. The debut album ”Whiskey” is released on September 2.
1997 Whiskey is released in France and the rest of Europe and becomes an instant success. A first European tour starts with 30 concerts in France.
1998 A second album ”Tattoo” is released on April 15. A ”Tattoo tour” follows, with more than 50 shows all around Europe. The tour ends with a sold out concert at L’Elysee Montmartre in Paris. During the festival ”La Route du Rock” in St Malo France, Jay-Jay meets up with Cocteau Twins Robin Guthrie, a musical collaboration and friendship starts.
1999 Jay-Jay moves to Strasbourg France, but travels back and forth to Stockholm, to work on his third album. 2000 After living one year in France Jay-Jay moves back to Sweden, buys a flat in the Stockholm suburb Sundbyberg, just a couple of blocks away from the studio where he recorded his first songs, 5 years earlier. ”Poison”, the third, and most successful, album of Jay-Jay’s career so far, is released April 18, reaching number 4 in the French album chart. The second single ”Believe in Us” and the ballad ”Far Away” are two of his most loved songs ever, and Jay-Jay still almost always include them in his concerts. The ”Poison Tour” starts in June and ends, again with a sold out show at L’Elysee Montmartre in Paris, after more than 50 concerts around Europe, Brazil and Canada. The concert in Paris on November 20 will be the last show in France until Jay-Jay returns to France again in 2005 for a concert at Bataclan on November 22, more than five years later.
2001 The song ”Suffering” from ”Poison” is featured in the TV-serie ”Queer as Folk”, the first American drama- serie to portray the lives of gay men and women. This becomes the start of a growing fan base in America. Jay-Jay has always mentioned how film music has inspired him, and in 2001 he compose and release his first soundtrack, to the French film ”La Confusion de Genres”. Jay-Jay creates an art installation called ”Cosmodrome” together with Dominique Gonzalez Foerster. It starts showing in Dijon and has since then been exhibited in the Lyon Biennale 2002, Musée d’Art Moderne in Paris 2007, and Centre Pompidou 2015.

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