by Tobias Keunecke, photo by Jessica Earnshaw
CMJ could just as well be over now that Alexz Johnson has played her showcase at Rockwood. What was unfortunately not witnessed by a myriad of people turned out to be one of the most moving shows of the week. Starting out with her song “Weight” that was on an album she did with Epic Records before it got shelved, she conquered everybody’s heart within 4 minutes. Accompanied on stage by her hipster band mates, she sang a high note towards the end that could not have been better performed by Adele. Performing songs from her shelved Epic album, her debut album “Voodoo” and her most recent EP “Skipping Stone,” she showed off her amazing vocals and rhythmic songs.
Closing her set with a new song called “Don’t Stop,” Johnson ended an amazing CMJ showcase. ”Don’t stop / Don’t stop / Keep moving to the top / It’s your time don’t let them tell you it’s not” is definitely the way to go for her. If she’s not going to make it to the top, something is seriously going wrong in the music industry.
Next up on stage two was singer-songwriter Johnny Gallagher. Equipped with a cowboy hat, he played a set that drew from country and singer-songwriter influences. Only accompanied by two acoustic guitars, he enchanted the crowd with his beautiful songs and hobo charm. Looking back, he pretty much took off where Alexz Johnson left off and turned the excited atmosphere into a more serene one. Overall, Rockwood was definitely the place to be on Wednesday night.
Tobias Keunecke is a contributing writer. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org