Greg Johnson

aka The Greg Johnson Set, This Boy Rob

Greg Johnson was born in Auckland on 7 January 1968. Music appealed early and he quickly became proficient on recorder, piano and trumpet. Despite this, he says, “I never really enjoyed being taught much, I just liked doing my own thing. I have no particular taste whatsoever – if it sounds good, I like it, doesn’t matter whether it’s cool or fashionable.”

It was this attitude which saw him perform in a variety of styles before he was out of his teens. He played in high school bands, including Compulsory Allies, who supported the Instigators at Auckland University, when Johnson was aged just 15. In 1985 he joined a bunch of older guys in Diatribe, who played a combination of R&B, ska and reggae, and he stuck around when the group evolved into Seven Deadly Sins, featuring another young talent in singer Fiona MacDonald.

Pagan Records publicity shot from July 1995
'Get High' music video from Tilt Your Interior, Feb 2021
Save Yourself
Greg Johnson, poster for EMI compilation The Best Yet, 2002.
Greg Johnson at Bar Bodega in 2004
Greg Johnson, 2018.
Photo credit: Denny Fanning
Ted Brown and Greg Johnson performing at the Troubadour, Los Angeles, 2005.
Handles Of Pearl, Live with the Auckland Philharmonia
Hibiscus Song
Seven Day Cure EPK
It's Been So Long
Greg Johnson with Mark Hughes on bass, Auckland Festival, 2009.
If I Swagger
Greg Johnson's Cocktail Club, 2008.
Greg Johnson, Ted Brown and Wayne Bell doing radio in Boston
Backstage at the Tauranga Jazz Festival, 2005. L to R: Ted Brown, Mark Hughes, Wayne Bell, Greg Johnson
I Got Opinions
Compulsory Allies, circa 1983/4. Greg Johnson in the centre, with drummer Paul Casserly, later of the Strawpeople and now a writer and director, on the right. To Greg's right is Joost Langeveld.
Photo credit: Murray Cammick Collection
Greg Johnson 1995
Don't Be The One
Greg Johnson, 2021.
My Ship Is Sitting Low
Greg Johnson
Photo credit: Photo by Tom Davidson
Kiss Me
Greg Johnson in California, mid 2000s
Greg Johnson, 1988
Photo credit: Simon Grigg collection
Greg Johnson, Ted Brown and Wayne Bell rehearsing with the APO, 2006
The Greg Johnson Set at The Siren, 1989 - Nathan Haines, Greg Johnson, Trevor Reekie
Photo credit: Photo by Brigid Grigg-Eyley
Book of Bifim
The Greg Johnson Set in 1989/90, taken in McKelvie Street, Auckland. From left: Nigel Russell, Trevor Reekie, Greg Johnson, Joost Langeveld and Willis Beckett
Photo credit: Simon Grigg collection
Now The Sun Is Out
Pagan drops Greg ... 
Photo credit: Trevor Reekie collection
Looking Out On Monday
Greg Johnson, 1992
Greg Johnson
The Greg Johnson Set, 1995 - Trevor Reekie, Greg Johnson, Johnny Fleury, Chris McKelvie, Scott Rogers
'Never Turn Back' music video from Swing the Lantern, Dec 2016
Greg Johnson with Dianne Swann in support, New Zealand tour 2021.
The Greg Johnson Set - l to r: Johnny Fleury, Scott Rogers, Nigel Russell (rear), Greg Johnson (front), Trevor Reekie (rear), Chris McKelvie
Diatribe, with Greg Johnson in the top centre and Fiona McDonald at the top left. Taken at the old Auckland railway yards, 1986.
Greg at Matakana, 2012
Greg Johnson and Mel Parsons, 2017 NZ tour.
Greg Johnson is awarded the 1997 APRA Silver Scroll, for 'Liberty' by the 1967 winner, Roger Skinner. Roger won for 'Let's Think of Something', as performed by Larry's Rebels.
Photo credit: Simon Grigg collection
Greg Johnson.
Photo credit: David Gall
Bluespeak at Cause Celebre, mid 1990s
Photo credit: Simon Grigg collection
Greg Johnson - Swing the Lantern (2015)
Greg Johnson Band at Molly's in LA, 2003
Ted Brown and Greg Johnson, Auckland 2002
Pagan Records publicity shot from July 1995
Bluespeak - l to r: Greg Johnson, Peter Scott, Chris Watts, Paul Hewitt, Tom Ludvigson. Taken at Cause Celebre in Auckland's Hight Street, the band had a popular Thursday night residency in the venue for three years in the mid 1990s.
Greg Johnson, Australian tour, 2019.
Comet Song
Don't Wait Another Day
Greg Johnson - Softly On Me (1996)
Greg in the mid 1990s
Sold out in Boston, 2004
Greg Johnson on the cover of Rip It Up #183, October 1992.
Greg Johnson outside Hotel Cafe. Greg played extensively here between 2003 and 2006.
Greg Johnson, right, with legendary memoirist Pamela Des Barres and US singer-songwriter Mike Stinson; Los Angeles, July 2019.
Greg in the studio in LA with Ted Brown (centre) and producer Clark Stiles (left), 2004
Greg Johnson - Low Frequency Word
Compulsory Allies - Greg Johnson, Paul Casserly, Mark Hatherley, Joost Langeveld
Photo credit: Courtesy of Dom Nola
Interview with Greg Johnson, 4 May 1995. Directed by Ross Cunningham.
A live radio concert, Kentucky 2005
RNZ's NZ Live: Greg Johnson 'Save Yourself', Nov 2016



Immergent Records

Funded by

Partners with