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Karen (nee Johnson) started singing at birth. Family influences, her mother’s rich contralto voice and Karen’s ability to pick out a tune on the piano at age 4 kept her at the business of making music thenceforth. She sang, played guitar, autoharp, blues harmonica and hosted open mics at coffeehouses in Minneapolis, MN, all before entering college.
In college, Karen’s fancy took to the stage and she performed in various theaters in the Twin City area, as well as portraying the musical and whimsical “Queen Anne” (the only) for eight seasons at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival. During and after receiving her degree in theater, she was involved in the founding of five community theaters in the Mid- and Northwest, two of which are still active to date.
Taking a hiatus from acting to raise her daughter, Mimi, in Austin, Texas, Karen kept active by working with artistic non-profit organizations and began her search for God/Good within.
From 2001-2005 Karen was a member of the “folk’appella” performance group, Texas Hot Flash. These three Austin Music Award-winning women singers complemented each other in voice and in outlook and together wrote several songs for their band. Karen also performed in the Austin band, Jelly Jar, keeping her busy in the Live Music Capital of the World.
So, how does that all come together in songwriting? Pretty darn well! She’s whimsical yet connected. There’s always a message in the music, and it makes you feel good.