"She is superb...gorgeous voice, strong feeling for orchestration, good sense of tempo and...she writes brilliantly. [Johnson]wrote 10 of 12 cuts on this CD. The bluesy fourth cut, 'Your mind don't run no more,' pulls no punches. The supporting cast is outstanding...simple but also effective in making each cut stand alone."
"Mostly created after a 'devastating' relationship breakup, stark emotional honesty coupled with adventurous forays into different musical styles makes The Good and Bad of It her best yet. From the raw energy of Chicken Bone and the country ride of Palomino to the bluesy title cut and sassy Too Bad, the crackling collection smashes any pre-conceived notions of the reserved Lutheran minister's daughter who sings hymns and ballads."
--Beth Woods, The San Diego Union-Tribune
"No question to my ears. Johnson has one of the most beautiful voices I've ever heard." --Mark Gallo, The Beach News
Deborah Liv Johnson was the third of five children, born to missionary parents in Tanzania, East Africa. Returning to the United States before her first birthday, Johnson was raised in the desert community of Ridgecrest, California. Her first love of music was drumming.
Johnson attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, known to have the best college choir in the world. She did not, however, follow the straight and choral path. Instead, she lettered in track and developed a presence as a singer/songwriter with stints at the campus coffeehouse and downtown clubs.
Graduating with a degree in creative writing, Johnson returned to California to continue her music career. Image-rich lyrics and well-crafted melodies became her trademark.
Often flying solo, Johnson's performances showcase the eclectic nature of her songwriting, highlighting deft guitar work and vocals, as she moves easily between blues, ballads, folk, country and jazz standards.
Johnson has released eight CDs on the Mojave Sun Records label: Mahogany Whispers, The Cowboys of Baja have Stolen my Heart, Across the White Plains, Softly and Tenderly, A Mountain We Will Climb (two-song single produced for breast cancer survivor Laura Evans), Away in a Manger, The Real Women Project (a four-song CD for another charity project) and her new release, The Good and Bad of It.
The Cowboys of Baja garnered Mark Gallo's choice for Best Local Album in San Diego and the following year, Colorado Public Radio listeners chose Johnson as Best New Artist. Even with the success of Across the White Plains, Johnson's Softly and Tenderly, a collection of sparsely produced classic hymns, is outselling all of her releases.
Over the years, Johnson has opened concerts for various name artists such as Dan Fogelberg, Don McLean, Spyro Gyra, Suzanne Vega, Arlo Guthrie, Nils Lofgren, John Stewart, Rita Coolidge and Janis Ian. She's performed across the country and sung the National Anthem for Hillary Clinton.