Ken Snakehips Johnson

A collection of articles that tell the story of Britain's first black swing bandleader.


Ken Johnson
Ken Snakehips Johnson

Ken Snakehips Johnson was Britain's first black swing bandleader. He was inspired by the sounds of the orchestras he heard on a trip to the United States. The material presented here was gathered together during April and May 2000 to satisfy the new-found curiosity about the life and times of this extraordinary man.

The material gathered here comes from a variety of sources, but there are certain people who have been instrumental in researching and authenticating the life of Ken Johnson. I would like to express my sincere thanks and deep gratitude to Val Wilmer, Howard Rye, Jeff Green and Stephen Bourne for all the work they have done in bringing this story to a wider audience.

Please note that copyright exists in the material and images presented here. Please do not download or reproduce it. Any enquiries can be submitted to Ken Johnson pages.


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