Jeff W. Johnson is extremely active as a professional drummer and drum teacher. He has an extensive musical background, having studied classical percussion with Robert Nowak, drum set with Steve Fidyk, and hand technique with the legendary Joe Morello. His formal education includes Wilkes University, Capital University Conservatory of Music, and the world's premier drum school, Drummers Collective, NYC.
Jeff toured the United States as a member of the Glenn Miller Orchestra, where he was a featured soloist. With the GMO, he performed in concert halls and headlined venues such as the San Francisco Jazz Festival. Prior to GMO, Jeff held the position of drummer at Busch Gardens, Williamsburg, VA for 9 seasons, most recently performing with the Starlight Orchestra. He was also employed by Carnival Cruise Lines as a show band musician performing on the M.S. Fascination and M.S. Fantasy. There he performed everything from jazz and big-band to Vegas-style shows and backed guest artists. He currently performs with DC based jazz big band, Swing Machine. With that ensemble, he has backed trumpet legend Wayne Bergeron and Grammy nominated singer Juanita Williams.
Jeff is a member of the Vic Firth Private Drum Teachers Program and the Percussive Arts Society. His teaching centers on reading, technique, coordination, and knowledge of styles. He also specializes in preparing students for auditions. His students have gone on to Capital University Conservatory of Music, Los Angeles Music Academy, Berklee College of Music, University of the Arts, and the Armed Forces School of Music.
Jeff has conducted clinics and taught workshops in public and private schools. He designed and taught an Introduction to Drumming class for the University of Richmond's School of Continuing Studies. He also teaches at various summer jazz camps.
Jeff's drum technique book, The Level System, was released by Alfred Publishing in April 2012. It is an overview of the accenting system that he studied with Joe Morello. The Level System was nominated for best book of 2012 by Drum Magazine. Jeff is also a reviewer of drum set literature for the journal of the The Percussive Arts Society , Percussive Notes.
Jeff is officially endorsing Vic Firth sticks, mallets and accessories. He is also an endorser for Sabian cymbals. He accepts students of all ages and levels - from beginner to advanced.