A highly appealing jazz singer with a quietly expressive voice and a deep understanding of the lyrics that she interprets, Keri Johnsrud has been an important part of the Chicago jazz scene for the past 15 years. With headlining appearances at Chicago's top venues including the historic Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Jazz Showcase, and a monthly residency at Southport & Irving, Keri has built a strong reputation and following among peers and fans, alike. While having a solid regional presence, she continues to perform across the country (including regular appearances in Atlanta and New York City) and has enjoyed singing in Iowa before a hometown audience of fans and friends.
In addition to finding success with her own group, Johnsrud also lends her voice to the critically acclaimed jazz ensemble Shawn Maxwell's Alliance.Now with the recording of her second CD, "This Side of Morning", she is making a major step forward not only as a singer, but as a lyricist and songwriter. With her collaborator and GRAMMY nominated pianist Kevin Bales leading a strong rhythm section behind her, Keri sounds in top form performing their originals on this latest album. Since its release in April 2015, "This Side of Morning" has garnered rave reviews from respected industry publications such as All About Jazz (5 out of 5 stars) and Jazz Weekly and has been spinning regularly on national and international radio stations.
'When Morning Dawns', a cut from the new album, is even featured in the independent film "Thank You a Lot."As Neil Tesser (2014 GRAMMY Award winner for Best Album Notes) has indicated, "She writes her own lyrics, which have character and intrigue, and sings them in a voice warm and pure, precisely suited to the stories she tells. Some of those tales are mysterious, some hip, and others as guileless as a saint. But in every case, they slice through the jokey irony of pop culture to frame modern insights in fresh new music. She has done her homework; she's thought things through..Johnsrud's voice is an instrument of tempered silver." Singing since she was seven years old and born and raised in Iowa alongside professional vocalists, Keri's plans for the future are as direct and as logical as her music; "I plan to keep singing, writing, teaching and performing as much as possible and want to take the music wherever it needs to go."