David Johnson Recordings

David Johnson was born in Edinburgh in 1942 and educated at the Edinburgh Rudolf Steiner School, the University of Aberdeen, and St. John’s College, Cambridge. On completing his Ph.D. thesis (“Music and Society in Lowland Scotland in the 18th century”) in 1970 he decided that formal education had gone far enough…

Since then he has learnt further skills on the job as a historian, composer, singer, cellist, journalist and publisher. He has held teaching posts with the University of Edinburgh and the Open University; students of his who have achieved distinction include the composers Kenneth Dempster and Rebecca Saunders. His composition-list comprises some 50 works, ranging from short pieces for amateurs and schoolchildren to substantial works like the 12 Preludes & Fugues for piano (1995) and the opera Thomas the Rhymer (1976). He has written works for the well-known trumpeter John Wallace, including Serenade for 4 trumpets (1987) and Dawn Call for trumpet and chamber orchestra (1991).

Recent achievements include directing the CDs The Art of Robert Burns and More Art of Robert Burns for the American record company Scotstown; having his 1-act opera Sorry, False Alarm premièred by Trinity College of Music (London), and his Concerto da Camera premièred by Napier University (Edinburgh); editing Thistle & Minuet and 4 Scottish Sonatas, two music-books for young people, for Schott (London and Mainz); and having his book Scottish Fiddle Music in the 18th Century issued in a 3rd, updated edition by the Mercat Press (Edinburgh).

He has also written a new opera, based on R. L. Stevenson’s novel Kidnapped.