Los Años Luz
|Website||Official web site|
Born to an Argentine mother, Marta Calvet, and an American father, Johansen lived most of his childhood in the San Francisco Bay Area, but moved with his family to Buenos Aires at the age of 12. Later he moved to Montevideo, Uruguay, where he learned to play guitar.
Johansen made a brief appearance in the local rock scene with the band Instrucción Cívica with Julian Benjamin in the 80s who released two albums Obediencia Debida in 1985 and Instrucción Cívica in 1986, but went to New York in 1990. There he met and married his Argentine wife, with whom he has a daughter. He played in the CBGB's club for long years, until he created the group The Nada, and in 2000 recorded the album with the same name, a mix of different Latin sounds with modern pop, funk and rock.
During the same year, and with the new album in his hands, he returned to Argentina, where he currently lives. The album, released by Los Años Luz, was relatively successful and Johansen and the group went on tour as far as Spain (album edited there by K Industrias).
By the end of 2002 Johansen recorded Sur o no Sur, also released by Los Años Luz in Argentina and by Sony Music in the rest of the world.
During 2003, Johansen became successful in Argentina, playing in June at the Gran Rex Theatre, the largest Buenos Aires hall. Again in Spain, he promoted his new album with concerts in Madrid and Barcelona, this time with bigger audiences. He also performed during the MTV Latino awards, from where he continued a concerts tour to Miami, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco prior to the release of the album in United States.
In 2004 he continued with concerts in Mexico, Chile, Belgium and again Spain (now in many different cities) with an even greater response from the people and the media. At the Latino Grammy Awards, Sur o no Sur was nominated for "Album of the year", "Song of the year" ("La Procesión") and "Best Music Video" ("La Procesión").
In between trips, recorded his third album My Face, again by Los Años Luz, which was well received both by fans and the media. The cover of his album Logo was drawn by cartoonist Liniers.
Johansen and tango
Several of Kevin Johansen's songs have a typical milonga 2/4 beat and are used to dance Argentine tango to at milongas. For example; "Sur o no sur" and "Tangómana" are popular with alternative tango DJs in the US.
- The Nada (2000)
- Sur o no Sur (2002)
- City Zen (2004)
- Logo (2007)
- Kevin Johansen + The Nada + Liniers = Vivo en Buenos Aires (2010)
- Bi (2012)
- "Kevin Johansen: Rock Star with Bilingual Twist". Morning Edition, NPR. October 16, 2003. Accessed September 11, 2010.
- "Grammys' new look: Fresh faces, voices contend for Latin music awards" by Ramiro Burr. Houston Chronicle. September 1, 2004. Accessed September 11, 2010.
- Kevin Johansen se robó el show
- Kevin's Official Site (English and Spanish)
- Interview (English)
- Kevin Serenades Luz Prieto in LAN Marketing Stunt (English and Spanish)