About Matt Johnson
A classically trained pianist and composer, Matt Johnson is known for his contemporary instrumental recordings. The founder of the Dolce & Nuit production and publishing company, Johnson first garnered attention with his 1986 debut, A Quiet Moment. Along with his work as a teacher, musical director, and composer, he has continued to release themed instrumental albums, including 1995's End of a Day, 2014's The New Silent Night, and 2019's Every Time I Feel the Spirit.
Born in 1961 in Sherman, Texas, Johnson started taking piano lessons at age six and grew up playing in church. By his teens, he was already a gifted performer and had started composing his own songs. After high school, he earned a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from Oklahoma Baptist University. He then completed a Master of Music degree in Composition and Jazz Studies, with a Distinction in Performance, from Boston's New England Conservatory of Music, where he studied with pianist Seymour Lipkin and composer William Thomas McKinley. While at NEC, Johnson also began performing his own songs. In 1985, he founded Dolce & Nuit Productions (named after his cats) and began publishing his musical and creative works. In 1986, he released his debut solo album of original instrumental music, A Quiet Moment. The record found an audience, and Johnson returned three years later with Something About the Moon. More albums followed, including 1992's Conversations, 1995's End of a Day, and 1995's Winter on the Common.
A certified teacher of music, he has taught private lessons since 1977 and has worked on the faculty at various institutions, including the Performing Arts School in Worcester, Massachusetts; North Shore Community College in Lynn, Massachusetts; and Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida. He has also served as Director of Music for multiple churches, along with working as a musical engraver, arranger, and editor for many music publishing companies, including Great Commissions Publications, Crown & Covenant, FJH Music, and Lifeway Christian Resources.
In his professional career, Johnson has focused on recording, performing, and publishing his original compositions and arrangements. He has written music for solo piano, orchestra, vocal and handbell choirs, vocalists, and jazz ensembles. His original music has also been featured in film and television, including shows like Hard Copy, the 1990 Public Service Announcement Don't Be a Litterbug!, and the 2007 drama Out of Balance. He has also licensed music to various programmed background music providers like Muzak, 3M, AEI Music, and Sirius Satellite Radio.
In 2010, Johnson returned to original music with his eight-volume Matthew's Yoga Music series and the religious-themed Reflections on…The Proverbs of Solomon. The holiday album The New Silent Night arrived in 2014, followed a year later by O Holy Night. He also released similar spiritual-leaning albums inspired by such Bible figures as Noah and Luke. Johnson released a handful of albums in 2019, including Surrender, New Life, and Every Time I Feel the Spirit. More instrumental-themed recordings followed in 2020, including Hot Cup of Tea, Broadway, We Gather Together, Come, Ye Thankful People, Come, and My Own Compass. ~ Matt Collar