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"URBAN SCENE Indie Award Nominees"

Johnaa' is nominated twice in the
Best Hip Hop Female Song
Quarter 3:

Johnaa/Soul Mate
Nonchalant/Whats Up Shawty
Moett/Pimptress In Me
DC Rap Divas/Drop It

Johnaa' is also nominated in
Best Hip Hop Overall Artist
Quarter 3:
Deep Flow Studio
Young Raven
M Dahmer
DC Rap Divas
Dark Alley


"Introducing JOHNAA'"

Introducing Johnaa'
In the Historic section of Maryland's, Prince Georges County lives a very lovely talented performer named Johnaa' A. Spruill.
Spruill, currently living in Greenbelt, MD was raised Kinston, North Carolina. "Johnaa'" both her birth name and the name she performs under is known to be a lyricist/singer. According to Johnaa', her mother, father, cousin Tanya, cousin Nashonie (also Her manager), and a host of other friends including Reggie, Cassandra, Casie, Troy and Duke were the people who supported her the most with her unique style and use of her talent. Spruill says the start of her rap career came when friends told her the poems she wrote could be flipped into inspirational songs. Johnaa' described as a down to earth girl who likes to spend a lot of time with her family, says she likes hanging out and horseback riding.
Spruill known for recording her
versuses says her career was influenced by such artist as Winton Marcellus, Michael Jackson, R.Kelly, Biggie, Tupac, Scarface, Rah Digga, Queen Latifah, Eve, and all the other women rappers who in her own words "are doing their thing
out there". According to Johnaa' all of her songs topics are from her own personal experiences and things that have happened to a friend or family member. Her songs speak about a women's everyday life. She likes her lyrics to spark thought in people. Spruill says "I don't talk about things that happen in the ghetto because I never grew up in the ghetto. I do not talk about things that I did not experience".
Johnaa' began her career three years ago by joining an all-male urban hip-hop group known as capital punishment. In December of 1997, Johnaa' won 1st place in an audition for "Tour de France", an
an international hip-hop show in Paris, France, there she performed with recording artist Tonya Blunt. Other venues she has performed include the Lincoln Theatre, numerous talent shows, and with DC go-go bands and local open mics.
She has also been featured in several hip-hop competitions and local video music cable productions. Recently she performed as one of 5 semi-finalists in the Pantene Pro-Voice Competition held in Central Park, New York City. Currently performing as a featured artist with a Crossover Band at Club Elite & Restaurant in Fort Washington, Maryland, Spruill says before a show she uses prayer as a motivation.
She also spends time listening to Tupac or Go-Go in preparation for a performance. According to Spruill "this gets rid of the goose bumps". Johnaa' not wanting to be labeled as just another singer or lyricist also displays her talent with the piano, guitar, clarinet, as well as dance.

When it comes to employment, most employers can not understand the time and effort she dedicates to her material and assuring its perfection. Currently she is focusing on finishing an album. She is expecting to "drop her album" in either March or April of 2005. The Album entitled "Gemini-My Tales of Heaven and Hell", will be very inspirational. One song to look out for on the album "Evil Twin" depicts spiritual battles going back and forth. Like all of her songs, the songs on the album have to do with her experiences in relation to everyday life, seen from a female perspective. Johnaa' expresses theories and ideas about love, hope, struggles, and pain are personified through her rough-edged,
metaphorical lyrics, while constantly maintaining her femininity. Another song to look forward to entitled "Sometimes" focuses on a once suicidal stage that she went through in the past. Johnaa' who can also "freestyle", says she prefers to write her songs down because the message is much stronger and she has more
time to put her all into it. The style of dress used by Johnaa' when performing is described as more of a
hip-hop style instead of sexually explicit, because she wants people to focus on her message rather than what she has on. She says when her music is finally released she wants "listeners to take in nothing but the truth". URSCENE Entertainment intends to be there to help Johnaa' boost her career and burst onto the scene with a new name to be added to the hip-hop legends.
Story By Larry Powell
If you would like to book a performance
by Johnaa'
Tonteita Jones/
Nashonie Wenzell
Pumpkin Seed Entertainment
301-220-0831 or


"What They Say About Johnaa..."

What They Say About Her...Johnaa is a lyricist & songwriter whose style exemplifies her experiences in relation to everyday life seen from a female perspective. Her theories & ideas about love, hope, struggles and pain are personified through her rough-edged, metaphorical lyrics, while constantly maintaining her femininity.

What I Say About Her...Johnaa (pronounced Jah-nay) has an impressive resume of shows & appearances under her belt. She's consistently on-stage & hosting events which I'm sure have her very comfortable in front of an audience by now. She's also traveled extensively (including overseas) to perform in showcases, talent shows & open for major label artists.

To me, she's the storytelling type of "femcee" (think: better looking Eve). She's fly, see, & has a lot on her mind about relationships & more introspective things, less bullshit. Her bio was right on the money about her femininity & I'm enjoying that. 'Cause she can talk about how much she cares about someone without bailing her man out or shooting somebody for him as proof (the "ride or die bitch" thing never sat well with me...give me a more delicate woman, feel me).

Johnaa's flow matches her concepts that are more simple in nature, easier to digest so she's not gonna be the "battle-minded" femcee if that's what you're looking for. This music'll give you a more 80's flashback type feel. More fun & single concept driven. Peep her game... +++ P Funk

- Q-Beats -

"2001 Pantene Pro-Voice Concert" - Pantene/MTV

"Singer/Songwriter/Entertainer JOHNAÁ"

THE PULSE--How would you describe your style?

Johnaá--If I had to describe my style, I would say it is laid back, and easy-going, spiritual, and, at times, (laughing) demonic.

THE PULSE--You look and sound very similar to Lauryn Hill, do you get that a lot?

Johnaá--Yes, a lot. However, I’ve also been compared to Mc Lyte, and Queen Latifa; I’ve even drawn comparisons to Scarface and 2Pac. I take them all as compliments.

THE PULSE--With the comparisons to 2Pac and Scarface, would you say your music has a bit of edginess to it?

Johnaá--Yeah, I think I get compared to Scarface because in most of my songs I like to tell stories; I think the 2Pac comparison is because of my passion for my music.

THE PULSE--Where does your musical background come from?

Johnaá--Around middle school my parents started me playing the piano. (she is trained in classical music). My parents weren't musicians, but as a family we would always listen to music together--Temptations, the Vandells, you know, the ‘old school.’

THE PULSE--How did you get started in Hip-Hop?

Johnaá--I’ve always been a writer and a Poet; around 1997 I had a friend who was in a DC group called “Capital Punishment” and he came to me and asked me to do a verse on one of their songs. At that time, I wasn’t serious about the music thing, but I wanted to try it. So we hooked, I did my verse, and they loved it.

THE PULSE--The PULSE learned about you from an MTV website where you won a contest for best new artists. Was that your first attempt at going public?

Johnaá--Actually, No. My first show was in Paris, France. I won an international Hip-Hop contest where Tonya Blount was the headliner. I thought I did terrible; but the execs I performed for loved me, and the next thing I knew I was on my way to Paris.

THE PULSE--What is going to separate your music from the other Neo-Soul artists such as Lauryn Hill, Angie Stone, and Eryka Badu?

Johnaá--I try to remind the listener that even though there is a spiritual concept to my music, I'm still human. I have a song called “That’s on you” where I talk about a guy who doesn’t want to be with me and the hurt, pain, and the tears I have over it. But then I take it to another level and talk about how that God is with me and that I’ll be OK.

However, I have another song called “Evil twin” where I talk about how women can also have thoughts of doing what they have to do to survive, whether it be robbing somebody, stripping, selling drugs, etc. Those other females (artists) don’t really touch upon that subject. I mainly just try to keep it real with my music.

THE PULSE--For the listener who doesn’t know Johnaá, what can they expect to hear when they come to see you perform?

Johnaá--A Johnaá show, a hip-hop show, will have dancers and entertainment. I won’t, like most hip-hop shows, just walk around the stage.

THE PULSE--A lot of artists in the industry equate keeping it real with “keeping it street," and if you don't, then you have sold out. Do you buy into that idea?

Johnaá--Well, the first person I’m gonna keep it real with, other than God, is with myself; I can’t talk about things I haven’t been through. As far as keeping it ghetto? True, I was born in the projects in North Carolina, but I was raised in suburban Maryland, so I can’t really preach ‘keep it ghetto’ in my music, you know.

THE PULSE--Why do you think DC still has not gotten it “props” for its Hip-Hop scene?

Johnaá--One word: HATERS! For some reason, in this area [DC/MD] we don’t have the unity. There are a lot of talented artists here who want to bring DC Hip-Hop to the forefront; but there are also those others that take the selfish attitude of wanting to be the "one" who put DC Hip-Hop on the map. That selfish “Hating” is where the problem is for DC.

THE PULSE--Let’s clarify what it is to be a “Hater” or to be “Hated on”

Johnaá--“Player Haters” or “Being Hated on” is another way of describing someone who is out to destroy you, to sabotage your success, whether it be bad mouthing you, sabotaging your show, etc. I have a song that reflects my experience with Haters, “You Know Who You are” in which I have the verses:
You know who you are
You didn’t think I’d make it; but you are mistaken
Now I’m living lovely, and now you wanna bug me
Do I think you will have to leave DC to be successful? Honestly, Yes.

THE PULSE--Hip-Hop, to the media, represents black culture; are these artists who glorify the materialism aspects accurately representing Hip-Hop and the black culture?

Johnaá--People constantly tell me that I need to write a “bling-bling” party song, but I can’t do that because that isn’t me. I like nice things, but that isn't me.

People always bring up Lil’ Kim and the message she puts out. I like Lil' Kim; I may not agree with everything she says or promotes, but I can’t and won’t judge her. I can only judge the person in the mirror.

THE PULSE--Would you let your kids listen to the Hip-Hop of today?

Johnaá--Some I would and some I wouldn’t. I only have two songs where I use profanity so-to-speak; I think about those things when I write, whether I would let my kids listen to the music I make. I also have a sensual song with no vulgarity in it; there is a way to do things

THE PULSE--How do you feel about Hip-Hop and the way it has spread to cultures outside the black culture?

Johnaá--You have to understand that the only thing in this life that is guaranteed is change. Look at Hip-Hop today, you have white boys rapping; that’s fine. But whoever imagined back in the days of RUN-DMC, the Sugar Hill Gang, and Kurtis Blow, etc., that you would have Hip-Hop as diverse as it is today? People talk about not crossing over, but Hip-Hop itself has crossed over.

THE PULSE--What do you want the readers and listeners to know about Johnaá?

Johnaá--Know that I’m serious about this [my music]. When you see Johnaá, know that she is always busy in the studio, promoting herself, laying down tracks, whatever it takes. I made a promise to myself that there is not going to be one day, whether it's only making a phone call to a record company, that I will try to accomplish something related to my music.

For further information on or to schedule a performance, contact Tontieta Jones, - The Pulse -

"The Crossover Band ft. Johnaa'"

In these times of barely being noticed in the world of music, there's a new band on the scene that seems to have a different focus than the norm. As I took time away from my normal Sunday evening, I found myself at an all too familiar hang out spot, Club Elite. What was different about this particular night was that I was going to my regular "non-go-go" spot to see a go-go band. Wow! How'd that happen? I don't rightly care how it happened really. I'm only hoping that it happens more often.

I went into this event with an open mind, seeing as though I have friends in the band. I was truly hoping, for my sake (and theirs), that they actually sounded good... so that I could give a good review. I'd hate to have to put the screws to a band that consisted of a few close friends, although I have in the past. It's all good though. I just prefer that folks have their ducks in line so I won't have to kick 'em over ... as too many know I will.

The first thing I'd say about the latest newcomer to the genre is that ... "Damn, that was the longest damn sound check in the history of music. Shouldn't that have been done before I arrived? When do we actually get this part of the show right? Speed it up some next time fellah's. I hate waitin' on the show to begin." As the crowd settled in for the show, the young lady rapper, Johnaa, was onstage greeting the audience. She was hot, on point, and not exactly what the picture depicted. Sure, she's a nice looking sista', however, the fliers showed some sexy, laid out in the grass type chick, and this woman onstage was... um... kind of New York-ish, if that's a word. In other words, she wore a cowboy-type hat and blue jeans, and a shirt that could have been more complimentary. It was her showcase, or her "coming out" party, so... in my opinion, she could have at least looked the part. Her appearance took nothing away from her performance, however, because the sista' got her own style, voice (lawd, did she have voice), as well as finesse.
As the newest addition to the go-go genre backed Miss Johnaa', the show was on!
Let us not forget why we're here. This band, Crossover, is unlike other bands. I can't compare them to any I've heard to date. Finally, a breath of fresh air has arrived! Finally, I'm not bored with the set. Finally! New songs! Go back and read that again. I said ... "Finally! New songs!" Dayum! What did I do to deserve this treat? As I watched the band, then the crowd, then back to the band, I thought... "This is amazing, incredible, and a shame." It's a shame that these cats are unheard as of yet. I wanted to share this new stuff with my friends. They were on point! This band has obviously rehearsed a hell of a lot because I hear it in their music. I hear it in their show! The first tune that the band performed was their remake of Jigga's, Girls, Girls, Girls, entitled "Boys, Boys, Boys", rapped and raunched by Johnaa'. She rocked this piece, no doubt! - Soldierette's Entertainment -


Still working on that hot first release.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Johnaa’ (Ja-nay) is a lyricist/songwriter who personifies love, hope, struggle and pain through her honest, rough-edged, metaphorical lyrics. She began her rap career seven years ago in the DC underground with the Metro group, Capital Punishment. Ever since then, Johnaa’ has been an active soloist.

§ In December 1997, Johnaa’ performed with then RCA-recording artist Tonya Blunt at “Tour De France”, an international show in Paris, France.
§ She performed as one of five national semi-finalists in the Pantene Pro-Voice 2001 Competition in Central Park in New York City, headlined by Jewel and Willa Ford.
§ She performed for the Pantene Pro-Voice 2002 Kickoff Promo Concert in Los Angeles, CA, January 30, 2002, with headliner India Arie.
§ She was as an opening act at an 2002 NBA All-Star party, featuring artists from J Records and Epic Records, at the Chrome Nitelife Arena in Philadelphia, PA.
§ She played DC Metro bills with artists, such as comic Joe Claire of BET fame, as well as “Live at Lincoln Theatre” (Washington, DC’s version of the Apollo.)
§ She has performed in numerous talent shows, and open mics throughout DC, MD, VA and PA.
§ She has also hosted several hip-hop competitions and video music cable productions.

Now she’s backed by Killabeatzz Designz, preparing her debut project, “GEMINI: My Tales of Heaven and Hell.” Yet, the road to paying dues has been, and still is, bumpy one for Johnaa’.

“Too many times have I been taken for granted, just because of my looks. I am an artist first and foremost. I got tired of folks half-assing on my talents. When everybody else left me alone, Killabeatzz still kept faith in me. They looked past what everybody else saw in me, and served me with the mood music I need to make my debut a smash. Even more, every time I felt ready to give up my dream to emcee, they always lent words of encouragement. Now that I have them in my camp, I’m stepping up to the plate. Killabeatzz believed in me when everyone didn’t; now I believe in myself even more.”

Thanks to her past experiences, Johnaa’ has a newfound awareness of all peoples, not just urban hip-hop heads.

“Those experiences with Pantene really opened my eyes to the whole industry, fanwise. I was the only one of the five finalists who rapped, basically, the only Black artist there. I finished second. And the people in the crowd, of all colors, showed me mad love! In fact, so many of them told me after the contest, that I should’ve won. To be invited back a second year just to perform meant I was definitely on the right track. And that love opened my eyes to creativity. It got my wheels turning inside”

Indeed, Johnaa’s road has been one that’s long and narrow. However, judging from her drive, she’s not leaving the game anytime soon. Paying dues this long has not made her bitter; it just made her that more cautious. Determined to see her dream become reality, Johnaa’ is taking matters into her own hands.

“After hearing all the industry horror stories, I made sure my business was straight. I established my publishing company, Pumpkinseed Entertainment. I got a strong production team behind me in Killabeatzz. Now it’s just a matter of time before I can make my mark in the music scene. If I sell, then great; but if I don’t, at least, I did it with a clear conscience, a clear love for the art. No one except God can take that away from me.”

Contact: Pumpkinseed Entertainment