Joshua Johnson: A Versatile Cavalier

Johnson worked tirelessly for months on his album, Sub-Zero.

Joshua Johnson

Johnson worked tirelessly for months on his album, Sub-Zero.

Ingrid Moises, Staff Writer

Students at Gables tend to be well rounded individuals with high aspirations in life, junior Joshua Johnson being an example of one. Johnson is a Cavalier who prioritizes his school and his community. He is Captain of the wrestling team, CavsTV and just recently released an album on Soundcloud titled “Sub-Zero.” Johnson has shared the many different influences that came into producing and songwriting for this album, as well as his experiences as a singer, songwriter and producer.

As a junior in the CAF&DM academy, his school life is quite demanding. Because of Johnson’s dedication to wrestling since the sixth grade, he has earned a position as one of Gables’ wrestling team captains. He shows leadership at practice and is a mentor to the newer members of the team. As a part of the CavsTV staff, he hosts a podcast show called “Mat Time,” where he interviews wrestlers on the team about their wrestling career and their lives outside of being student-athletes. He believes it is vital to reveal students’ day to day lives, because sometimes all we know about someone is what they show on the surface.

“I think it is really cool to see your peers involved in things they love outside of school, clubs and sports. Making an album takes time but if you love it, it does not matter,” junior Stephanie Andrade said.

Originally, Johnson had no intentions of creating music due to the fact that he was preparing for his exams during the spring. When COVID-19 hit the U.S., schools shut down and exams were canceled, which meant students had a longer summer break than usual. With much time on his hands, he became motivated to chase after his musical goals and get started on his tracks. Though he was excited, Johnson felt as if he was not ready for an album release yet, so he opted for an Extended Play and planned to release it the same date he did his first project, “Journey”, in 2019.

Regretting his decision to release his EP, Johnson later took it down a week later and worked his way towards releasing an album. He altered the released tracks and extended them or added certain effects such as Ariana Grande and Mac Miller laughing together and a sample from the game “Mortal Kombat”. He drew inspiration for his songs from pre-existing projects like the song “My Favorite Part” by Ariana Grande and Mac Miller. The name of the album “Sub-Zero” was mainly influenced by the video game, “Mortal Kombat,” as it is his all time favorite video game.

ohnson had many different ideas when coming up for the cover art of his album, but his was one of the proposed covers. (Joshua Johnson)

Johnson had many tracks that were inspired by today’s racial injustice and fight for peace. His third track “The Problem (You)” is focused on the Black Lives Matter movement. The track includes samples of multiple incidents, news reports and phone calls to spread awareness about the movement. Johnson shares that he is a very avid supporter of the movement. The fourth track was “NJNP” which is based off the chant “No Justice No Peace,” including a sample of the chant from a protest in Philadelphia, and then sampled two black women being interviewed on the news. One of Johnson’s close friends also felt strongly about the movement and wanted to collaborate and aid in the process of making this track. He created beats while she worked on the lyrics. After giving this project much thought and consideration, Johnson felt he was ready to release it to the public.

“I actually teared up making the third track because the samples really hit me and the Black Lives Matter movement is something I am very passionate about so it was fun making as well,” junior Joshua Johnson said.

Johnson wishes to keep these aspects of his life for as long as he can as they have taught him valuable life experiences. He continues to share his love for music and encourages everyone to go after their dreams, it is never too soon to start working on what you love doing. His music is available for streaming on Soundcloud and promotes his work through his Instagram page, @joshuaj454.