The Shaun Johnson Big Band Experience is a rare newcomer to traditional pop – fusing a big band spirit with an inventive edge – and garnering a top 5 Billboard spot with the release of their first album. Shaun, an Emmy award-winning crooner (and lead singer of the internationally known vocal group, Tonic Sol-fa) indelibly stamps vocal jazz and swing with a contemporary punch – to the delight of both traditionalists and newcomers – emerging as an original voice in the continuing tradition of the American vocalist.
-Featured on their very own nationally televised PBS television special, “The Spirit of the Season.”
-Philanthropic efforts include: collaborations with Big Brothers and Big Sisters, Susan G. Komen, Lunch is Served, and Wishes&More, as well as appearances for 360 Communities, Music in the Schools, the Make A Wish Foundation and numerous other charities.
-Shaun won his first Emmy in the “Musical Composition/Arrangement” category.
-National media appearances include: Newsweek, Country Weekly and MediaStyle magazines, NBC’s Today Show, A Prairie
Home Companion with Garrison Keillor, Steve & DC (nationally syndicated radio show) and others.
Shaun Johnson, an Emmy-winning singer/songwriter, seemed destined for a life of music from the very beginning. “One of my
earliest memories,” he says, “is of performing at state fair talent shows with my little sister. We’d sing Sonny and Cher songs, a
cappella, when neither of us was quite tall enough to reach the microphone.”
Originally from the small town of Saint Joseph, Iowa, Shaun attended Saint John’s University before settling in Sioux Falls,
South Dakota, where he began his career with the nationally known vocal group, Tonic Sol-fa. This quartet has sold nearly two
million albums independently and has been featured in Newsweek and on the Today Show. Shaun is still an active member.
In 2016, Shaun put together a group featuring some of the best instrumentalists and arrangers in the Midwest– guys who’ve
toured with numerous luminaries, who are Music Educators of the Year and who are integral members of collegiate jazz
faculties. His vision was to create a contemporary big band sound with a pop flair, honoring legends like Frank Sinatra, with a
nod to Michael Bublé, while giving the music his own twist – performing songs ranging from the “Spiderman Theme” to
increasingly popular original work.
The initial holiday tour received such overwhelming feedback that another, expanded holiday tour was undertaken the
following year. The proceeds from those first, small tours were subsequently donated to local charities. In 2018, with increased
presenter and fan demand, the BBE added even more cities to the holiday tour and for the first time, began accepting regular
season shows which expanded rapidly across the U.S.
Look for the BBE’s very first PBS special, “Spirit of the Season,” to air across North America as well as the Big Band Experience’s
very first studio recording, “Capitol,” which garnered a top 5 debut on the Billboard Jazz Chart.