David Johnston

September 8, 2023 @ 9:00 pm

“More than one music writer around town have referred to Johnston as one of Boston’s best kept secrets of the local music scene…”    

Radio Boston’s Anthony Brooks

David Johnston is a songwriter, bandleader, and street musician based in Cambridge, MA. As veteran Boston Globe reviewer Steve Morse has noted, Johnston’s long-running residency (2003-2007) at Union Square’s former Tir Na Nog—the current Bull McCabe’s (where Johnston also played from 2008-2012)—would draw “the best local musicians to play his gigs… luring such Boston all-stars as [Duke] Levine and bassist Marty Ballou (who are both in [J. Geils’ frontman Peter] Wolf’s touring band), guitarists Chris Rival… Tim Gearan, Steve Sadler, and Steve Mayone, drummer John Sands (who tours with Aimee Mann) and bassist Richard Gates, who has played with Suzanne Vega.” In Morse’s words, these heavy hitters “mesh with Johnston’s loose but highly unique mix of swampy delta blues, subtle jazz, Dylan-steeped folk, and far-out psychedelia.”