Johnston now shares his passion for teaching with students around the world thanks to MikesLessons.com, the largest educational site for drummers. Read on as Johnston shares life lessons and gives insights into his recording setup.
Audio-Technica: You studied extensively under drumming legends like Pete Magadini and Will Kennedy. What lessons would you say they instilled in you?
Mike Johnston: I would say the biggest thing that I got from Pete was the idea that it was OK to have teaching be my “Plan A.” During one of our lessons when I was in my twenties, Pete said to me, “Mike you are a good drummer and you seem to really enjoy it, but when you explain stuff to other people your whole face lights up with pure joy and enthusiasm. Maybe you should consider teaching as your primary focus.”
Having someone that I looked up to give me the verbal permission to switch my dreams from being a rock star to an educator… Well, my life hasn’t been the same since, and I couldn’t be happier.
Mike Johnston’s musical journey began when he took up the drums at an early age. Later, he pursued the rock star dream, touring the world and releasing two albums on a major label with the band Simon Says. However, he soon discovered that education was his true calling.