My name is Alexz Johnson and I started this blog because I love to write. I also was driven by this want to be completely open and honest about my experiences as a singer-songwriter and actress in the entertainment industry. Whether it’s taken into account, or is even read isn’t important – I want to be able to read back to myself in the “I wish I was in my 20′s” days – God willing I make it to that day – as a reminder of what a fool I was, or perhaps wasn’t. Either way, I’m prepared to bare my truth, swallow my pride and share with you, me.
I’m the middle child in a family consisting of 9 siblings and two parents (surprisingly, only two parents!). I was lucky enough (or un-lucky enough) to be born with a huge voice and some kind of outer-worldly fearlessness towards life. I’m sure the fearlessness was helped by my family’s belief in my talent as I’d entertain at gatherings by singing pitch-perfect beer jingles I’d memorized from the tube. So, not surprisingly majority of my time on this planet, thus far, has been spent working in TV, film and music (it was that or join the circus I guess). It became real when at the age of 13 I landed the lead of a Disney series called “So Weird”. I, to this day, have no idea why they hired me, but it happened and it started it all!
On completion of the series I spent close to 3 years being a “normal girl”. Tired of correspondence I enrolled myself in high school, where I’m sure I learned interesting things I don’t remotely remember, but I do remember in depth the pain and suffering it all entails. The hell of high school. I think some are just better at it than others. I found later in life it was the mean one’s that reached their highest social potential at around gr.10. Sicks and stones will break my bones but names will never hurt me… what about a wad of phlegm hitting the forehead? That kind of rests in the middle of both, no? I was “that girl from the Disney show with weird elmo shoes”. (They we’re actually red clogs, and they were actually rad, I swear).
I don’t suggest by any means that this isn’t experienced by many teens, tweens or drama-queens regardless of being in the public eye or not. I only know my personal experience. I do suggest, however, to keep that old quote in your back pocket, “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger”. Simple, I know. Something ignites in the early years that tends to stay with you forever… I believe this is a blessing in disguise. My blessing was I began writing music in the basement with my brother. At the time, it was a release of everything I felt.. a safe place to bloom. I grew with my music and it was something that has stayed with me ever since.
After my stint in the dark ages of public school, I landed the lead in another series called “Instant Star”. Typical of 17, I was more than thrilled to be flying off to Toronto, independence ahead! In Canada, it’s about as far as I could get from Vancouver and my parents. Missing home desperately upon landing, I put a brave face on and began filming. Once I was settled in, the next four years of shooting breezed by with effort.
Amidst my years on Instant Star, my brother Brendan and I continued writing music for both my musical character “Jude” on the show, and our personal project, landing a record deal in 2005 with Capitol US. Only to lose the deal a year later due to a change of label head at the time, we had our first taste of musical torment. With a dozen more songs under our belt from a few LA and London writing trips, we kept writing in the basement, believing more and more we had a purpose – to get our music out. Towards the end of IS, our music again landed a major US deal, this time with Epic/Sony. January of 08, I began working on our material immediately with producer Greg Wells. At that point, this process was one of the most incredible experiences of my life, emmursing all of Bren and my musical sounds and quirk with Greg’s timeless production skills. I learnt a lot about the record process, the good the bad and ugliest of ugly – there is such a thing. Lo and behold, Epic fell through due to the same reasons, taking our completed album with it. We still have yet to receive the 11 tracks back.
At the time, I didn’t realize how much this killed me inside. I feel like a majority of us tend to immediately suppress the pain of lose so we can keep moving forward. It lets enough time pass so when you really stop and look at your situation, the wounds have already started the healing process. We are so built for this.
Luckily, the experience lead me to write even more songs, not just for me, but for other artists as well.
And, that’s what I continue to do as long as this bizarre world allows, I write. I also continue to film when I’m lucky enough to land great roles. My heart and soul lies in my music and whether I like it or not, no matter how little assurance there is in it all, it just is what it is.
I guess that’s the skeleton of the journey thus far. Other parts will be filled and understood as I continue on the path of life and music and as I simply learn more in general. In my 25 years on this planet, I am incredibly thankful for every part of it. It thrills me to have found a way to communicate my feelings and vulnerabilities through not only my music, but now through this blog. Maybe in some way, something you read will give you a little strength on your own path. That is my hope.