Our Star Candle Minds
The sound of Janah, hailed as 'Jubilant and compelling' by the Chicago Sun Times, is working and so are they. The five-piece Atlanta-based band that Creative Loafing critics and readers both voted Best Local International/World Music Band in 2002, has been gaining popularity with a diverse, enthusiastic fan base across the country. Born of founder Keith Johnston's world travels and personal vision for a better breed of American music, the band independently released World That Surrounds You in 2000 combining sensuality and spirituality, power and suggestion, electric and acoustic instruments, distortion and clarity, into an ear-catching collection of distinctive yet emotionally accessible songs. That album, acquired and released by Rattlesby Records in 2002, resulted in extensive national touring, many festival appearances, an internet message board filled with delighted, inquisitive fans, college and AAA radio airplay, and an increasingly confident, determined band, hungry for their growing audience. Opening for notable acts from Sister Hazel and Alanis Morisette, to veterans such as Johnny Winter, The B-52's, The Radiators and The Samples, Janah continues to impress the accidental listener and the seasoned aficionado alike. Modern Drummer gave World That Surrounds You an impressive 9 out of 10 rating, describing the album as 'a musical melting pot, extremely well-orchestrated, drawing upon folk music from all corners of the earth.' Commercial airplay in Cincinnati, Chicago, Memphis and Nashville only confirmed what grass-roots listeners had been saying all along. We like this music. Despite the band member's individual dedication and experience, Janah's sound is, in essence, the musical memoirs of Keith Johnston, a song writing visionary, composer, and lyricist who's desire to find a new voice took him from the predictable streets of Atlanta, to the shores of Israel and beyond, ultimately giving his songs an authentic world quality no amount of cunning, second-hand, desk-top ingenuity could achieve. His eclectic compositions combine experience, appreciation for cultural distinctions, melodic sensibility, and a lust for adventure, discovery and epiphany. Janah's second album, 'Swan In The Monsoon' released in April 2004, is brimming with the same bold spirit of imagination, damning the status quo, while fostering unusual mass appeal. It has contagious melodies, lush, powerful orchestration, meaningful lyrics, and a feast of rock-solid percussion burnished in by hundreds of live shows. Instead of struggling to live up to their studio work, as many bands do, Janah continually comes alive on stage with wild energy and great detail, leaving a reoccurring theme in the letters of multiplying fans: 'When are you coming back?'