Johno brings World Music Textures to this Folk Classic.
Multi-Instrumentalist, philanthropist and world traveler Johno is set to release his next music video, a unique and inspiring cover of the song “Country Roads,” originally by John Denver, on June 5. It comes from his new album The Road Not Taken. Johno, drawing on his many musical inspirations and journey, takes this cover into a new realm of song and dance that still incorporates elements of folk and country music from the original, while staying true to a variety of other ethnic styles Johno is known for. Within the song, he includes subtle string parts and a constant wall of drums that gives listeners a dancing upbeat rhythm throughout. In doing so, the artist manages to magnificently turn around the original southern American ballad into a current one that is more worldly and of his own volition.
The video itself is a collaboration that Johno had with director and animator Kleo Korai. They set out to make a grand collage of visuals from the musician’s travels over the last couple of years. As Johno states, “I also always knew that the video for this one needs to reflect the wonderful road I’ve been through in the past years, with my musical backpack, and this John Denver classic in it.”
The new video has everything from painted scenes dancing lightly across epic photographs to maps from around the world. It is the perfect representation of everything that comes from the song, especially the eternal calling, “take me home, to the place I belong.” In the end, Johno sings the words “West Tunisia” instead of “West Virginia,” for the final chorus. It is only fitting that Johno should pay tribute to one of the places where he recorded his first album, as the place he belongs.
Don’t miss this newest video which is sure to capture the imagination with thoughts of travel and home. It brings an old folk classic back to life on Johno’s newest album The Road Not Taken. Listen for yourself and enjoy.
This classic has been ‘in my backpack’ for a decade or so. I must have about twenty different sketches of it, each with different musicians I met on the road – one with Persian tar, another with Arabic saz, another with Balkan fiddle, and yet another with Moroccan gambri. Even have one with Tunisian Viola master Jasser Haj Youssef, recorded live in the Monastir Library. I always knew that this song will have to come along with me when I properly release my first work. It was eventually recorded in Tunis, with a herd of true virtuosos – Ahmed Chaibi, Sahbi Mustafah, Naufel Mana, and G’dour on the killin’ percussion. I also always knew that the video for this one needs to reflect the wonderful road I’ve been through in the past years, with my musical backpack, and this John Denver classic in it. I hooked up with director/animator Kleo Korai to make a grand collage of visuals from this eclectic journey, and the eternal calling “take me home, to the place I belong”.
Empowered by his life-long musical voyage to the unknown, the music producer, jazz maestro and omni-style musician bring us poems seen through the wonderful eclectic world. After working with local artists from many countries, he is taking things into his own hands to show the world its own songs and melodies.
With courage and passion, his aim is to show the value of our cultural heritage and tradition, and emphasize the importance of bringing it back to life and taking care of it.