A Nashville gem returns to Iowa City this weekend, for good. On July 2, The Mill welcomes Iowa City’s very own Brian Johannesen to celebrate a much-anticipated homecoming extravaganza. Expertly infusing the folk and country genres with a vintage rock ‘n’ roll vibe, and with addition of his original lyrics, the result is a high-energy performance. Johannesen has been based in Tennessee since 2012; the vagabond singer-songwriter used his time in the south to find a seamless balance between Midwest and Southern Americana traditions, with songs around the central themes of whiskey, women and insatiable wanderlust.
The show will be a fully acoustic set, featuring two of Johannesen’s favorite Nashville musicians: Sam Lewis and Darrin Bradbury. Lewis, known for his gripping vocal timbre and a genuine, earnest style that is truly his own, will be complemented by Bradbury, a proclaimed American satirist who performs in the celebration of humor and heartbreak. The two are both flourishing folk-country singer-songwriters sure to imbue the celebration with poignancy and grit.
Johannesen and company will be on stage at The Mill this Saturday, July 2 at 8 p.m. with a $7 admission. Brian’s “Because I Bloody Well Stammer,” featured on his self-titled 10”, has been included on Daytrotter.com’s best songs of 2013; following the homecoming he will continue to work on releasing a full-length album at Flat Black Studios in Lone Tree, IA.
Rob Merritt, well known throughout the region’s arts, journalism and nonprofit sectors, established himself as a playwright in 2011 when The Summerland Project premiered as part of Theatre Cedar Rapids’...