Black Magic Johnson
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Black Magic Johnson

Edinburg, Illinois, United States | SELF

Edinburg, Illinois, United States | SELF
Band Blues Soul


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I was very impressed with this album, both guitarists are excellent, without resorting to rock headbanging, and Britton is a very impressive singer, and individual songwriter. These guys should do well on the European tour circuit; if I was a promoter I’d be getting them over the Atlantic asap. (click link to read more) - Blues & Rhythm

"Poncey blues this ain't" - BMJ lay down twelve tracks of hard-core jook-joint blues that are definitely not for the fain-hearted. (click link to read more) - Blues in Britain

The music is good, but the lyrics are what make this stuff real. This is pure wit (click link to read more). - Blues Blast Magazine

Bluesman Reggie Britton talks about Koko Taylor, Eddie Snow, and his band Black Magic Johnson
· Posted by Michalis Limnios BLUES @ GREECE on March 3, 2013 at 1:41pm
· View Blog
"Blues is a big part of American history and I hope it keep its natural roots. Today’s blues is becoming a lot more southern rock based and I think its loosing it natural flavor its history."
Reggie Britton: Call me Black Magic Johnson
Son of jazz bassist Rayfield Britton, Reggie started his musical career as the premier Trio Drummer with The Black Knights, an award winning drum and bugle corps. His ever expanding talents lead him to St. Louis, where he spent three years as the drummer for The Natchez Cast on the Robert E. Lee riverboat. As part of their repertoire the cast performed a variety of dixieland standards and blues. After moving to Springfield, Reggie became the drummer of preference for such local acts as: The Joe Tenuto Band, Tash and Country Magic, and legendary Sun Records recording artist Eddie Snow, where he met Mr. Snow's guitarist, Harry Nino. Reggie Britton now fronts his own band Black Magic Johnson.

BMJ has been known for his fun collection of Southern Delta and Chicago new age blues. He may have been pumping originals and covers for only the past 15 years but he’s been playing the blues for over 25 years with some of the old greats like “Eddie Snow & the Snow Flakes, Oysters Rockefeller, Tom Irwin and many other music groups. The players in his band, Dan Grover, Alexis Rodgers, Robert Hagler and Willie Chrismon, bring over 50 years of experience to the table. Also BMJ has opened for some of the greatest blues acts around today such as Koko Taylor, David Dee, Lonnie Brooks and Ronnie Baker Brooks just to name a few. In 2004, 2005 and 2007 BMJ was nominated as one of the best blues act in central Illinois and performed at the Great Performers of Illinois concert at Chicago’s Millennium Park with Koko Taylor, David Dee and many more in 2006. In 2010 BMJ became the official blues band of the Springfield Milers Motorcycle Club and the most popular act among other Motorcycle Clubs and Blues Societies throughout Illinois and Iowa and other surrounding states. BMJ recorded their first CD titled "Food for Thought" in 2004 and October 2012 relesed the second album "Call Me" the tracklist contains 11 songs all penned primarily by Reggie, played by BMJ members with added sounds from various sources.
Interview by Michael Limnios
When was your first desire to become involved in the blues?
When I first started playing music playing blues wasn’t on my mind. Although my dad was a blues musician I use to watch him and my older brother and my uncle with some other cats play. My mind was on rock, funk, jazz, country and others not blues. It wasn’t till I got older that the blues became a big part of my music life.
From whom have you have learned the most secrets about the blues?
I would have to say Eddie Snow. I learned a lot playing with Eddie I also learned at lot form my dad and older brother Raymond who’s a guitar player, but what Eddie taught me stuck because I had to use it on gigs.
What was the first gig you ever went to & what were the first songs you learned?
I’m not sure it’s been so long ago but I remember BB King at the Blue Note. I was too young to get in so I was snuck through the back door. My favorite first song was “she’s into to something” by Muddy Waters
What does the BLUES mean to you & what does music offered you?
History the struggle of a people in a life style that they were thrown into and the only way out was education, hard work that didn’t always help, but the blues was their music a way to express them selves also a way out of that ghetto life style. To quote Alexis Rodgers Blues is a natural fact, the raw emotion juice that flows through all American music. Blues today for me give me expression and a way out from the everyday bump and grind also something to leave behind.
What do you learn about yourself from the music? How has the blues music changed your life?
How blessed I am. How I’m no different from anyone else. Well these days it keeps me somewhat busy & it has helped me to love life more and to count my blessings. I got a release in life & there are not a lot of people that have that.
How do you describe your sound and what characterize Black Magic Johnson’s sound?
I would have to say real. BMJ’s sound has change over the years, but our happy song style has remained the same.
Cool name Black Magic Johnson. How did you come up with it?
Well, when I played with Oysters Rockefeller. We played some Santana and Black Magic Woman was one of the songs we played. It was many years back I was playing a gig with some friends at a club in Springfield, IL. There were only about 10 people in the place. We took a break I went to the men’s room and while I was in there a young lady decided to come in and ask me questio - Blues @ Greece


Food For Thought
BMJ Bootleg Live
Call Me



Black Magic Johnson views the blues as a natural fact—the raw emotional juice that flows through all American music. Based in Springfield, Illinois, this quartet plays blues that strip away the lines between rhythm & blues, country, rock & roll, gospel, and soul. Black Magic Johnson’s latest release, Call Me (2012), is a sonic testament to the unbound, life-affirming vigor of the blues. After cutting his teeth with Eddie Snow & the Snowflakes, Oysters Rockefeller, and Tom Irwin, Reggie Britton—singer, songwriter, drummer, and harmonica player—formed Black Magic Johnson as a way to live more, to make himself and others feel better through his “happy songs.” Since then, Black Magic Johnson has performed alongside Koko Taylor at the 2006 Great Performers of Illinois celebration in Chicago, Lonnie Brooks, Davis Dee, Buddy Guy, Phill Guy and Ronnie Bake Brooks, Willie Nelson & Others. BMJ been voted the Best Blues Act in a 2008,2009, & 2011 Illinois Times readers poll, and been named the Official Blues Band of the Springfield Milers BMW Motorcycle Club. Helping Britton breathe life into his songs are Dan Grover on rhythm guitar and Alexis Rogers on lead guitar, with Willie Chrismon and Bob Hagler splitting bass duties. Black Magic Johnson are currently at work writing songs and gigging.