Pisgah Forest native Danny Johnson played music for more than seventy years. His love of music began very early in his life, growing up among musicians in his family—including his mother, a Juilliard-trained classical pianist. Johnson went on to become the patriarch of a multi-generational musical legacy.
The Danny Johnson Band consisted of Johnson himself, playing guitar and singing, his son Alan and grandson Ray Hill, both guitarists as well, and grandson Flave Hart, a young banjo phenomenon who carries on the musical style of his grandfather’s close friend and former bandmate, the late Carroll Best. Ray and Flave were both taught by their uncle Alan, keeping the transfer of the family’s musical legacy strong between the generations.
The band performed at many festivals over the last three decades, and band members were the recipients of numerous awards in contests, both as a band and individually. They also appeared on several recordings, including Celebrating the 75th Annual Mountain Dance and Folk Festival and Madison County fiddler Roger Howell’s Hills and Home.
Danny Johnson passed away on March 11, 2019 at the age of 84.