Chris Johnson

Senior Lecturer: Music Production

School of Performance & Media Production


T: 87 6762

Chris Johnson

Chris Johnson BA(Hons)


I am a producer-songwriter having worked on over 20 commercially released albums to date. I am most well known in the international Progressive Rock niche for my work with Mostly Autumn, Halo Blind and Fish (ex-Marillion) and I perform around 80 – 100 gigs in various bands, and as a solo artist, across the UK and Europe every year. My most recent work with Mostly Autumn reached number 6 in the UK Official Rock Chart in April 2017 and I work professionally as a producer, songwriter, mix engineer and multi-instrumentalist. My first publishing contract in 2004 helped finance a small home studio which I have been building up ever since and forms the heart of my boutique record label Nautical Records which deals with the contracts, release schedules and promotion of my in-house productions. I studied Sound Design for Film and Television and have worked as a sound designer on several short festival films, and well as the multi-award winning feature film Ahlaam, which was optioned for an Academy Award in 2006.


In 2000 I devised and produced BBC Music Live in York; a music festival which brought together the BBC, local government, venues, musicians and communities in an annual 10-day event that was televised nationwide. Such community work developed into songwriting, music production and film making workshops designed to help embed creativity into school curricula and to widen access to media arts.


Before joining York St John University, I worked as a Lecturer at Huddersfield University teaching radio production and music production. Teaching on the BA Music Production at York St John draws on my wide range of expertise and my research enables me to continue exploring and discovering more about creativity in songwriting, performance and producing music.

Further Information


BA(Hons) Music Production: First Class

Post Graduate Certificate in Higher Education

Foundation Degree: Sound Design for Film and TV

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


  • I teach on the Music Production suite of courses:
    • Music Production BA(Hons)
    • Independent Music Production BA(Hons)
    • Music Production & Creative Business BA(Hons)
    • Digital Music BA(Hons)
  • I am the module leader for 1MP107 Making Music in the first year, 2MP010 Producing Music in the second year, and 2MP013 Song & Artist Development in the second year.
  • I am a Major Project supervisor in the third year.
  • I am Year Tutor for all second year students.
  • I also teach topics on many other modules where my expertise is required:
    • Studio skills and technology
    • Songwriting and music composition
    • Advanced recording and mixing techniques
    • Radio production
    • Sound design for film and television
    • Film Music
    • Marketing, PR and promotion
    • Music production in social contexts
    • Music Publishing
    • DIY music production

Professional Activities

  • Regular output of commercial music productions
  • Regular performances across UK and Europe (80 – 100 a year)
  • Chris sits on the Musician’s Union (MU) Live Performance Section committee
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


Chris is studying for a PhD. His research focusses on a musician’s view of their own self and how it is mediated by the collaborative, social and technological processes of music production. He is currently co-authoring a book with Dr Robert Wilsmore for Routledge focusing on collaboration in music production.

Publications and Productions

Book Chapters

Wilsmore , R and Johnson, C (2017)  The Mix Is. The Mix Is Not. In: Hepworth-Sawyer, R and Hodgson, J ed. Mixing Music. Perspectives on Music Production. New York, Routledge.


Music Productions

October 2018

Smoke Rainbows: Music Minds Matter – Various Artists [Monks Road Records HMUK1]

Executive Producer. This project brought together 12 artists to record live at Abbey Road Studios raising awareness of the @musicmindsmatter mental health campaign in aid of the charity Help Musicians UK

April 2017

Sight of Day - Mostly Autumn [Mostly Autumn Records AUT0350]
Songwriter, performer, producer, recording engineer.

January 2017
Sight of Day : Limited Edition - Mostly Autumn [Mostly Autumn Records AUT0349]
Songwriter, performer, producer, recording engineer.

January 2016
Illusions Reckoning - Mantra Vega [Black Sand Records CDBSAND3]

June 2015
Island (single) - Mantra Vega [Black Sand Records CDBSAND2]

April 2015
Box of Tears - Mostly Autumn [Mostly Autumn Records AUT0346]

December 2014
Festive - A Garland of Flutes
Producer, recording engineer.

August 2014
Long Way Home - Pete Davies [Home Roots Music Ltd HRCD 019]
Producer, performer, recording engineer, mix engineer.

February 2014
Occupying Forces - Halo Blind [Nautical Records NAUTCD 0006]
Producer, songwriter, performer, recording engineer, mix engineer.

October 2012
Songs from the Old Kitchen – The Heather Findlay Band [Black Sand Records  CDBSAND2]
Producer, performer, recording engineer, mix engineer, graphic designer.

November 2012  
The Structure of Recollection – Simon Snaize [Aktual Records AKR003]
Recording Engineer.

February 2012        
Live the the Café 68 – Heather Findlay and Chris Johnson [Nautical Records  NAUTCD005]
Producer, songwriter, performer, mix engineer, graphic designer.

August 2012              
The Rookery – Chris Helme [Num Num Music LNM10]

March 2011     
The Phoenix Suite – Heather Findlay [Black Sand Records CDBSAND001]
Producer, arranger, performer, recording engineer, mix engineer.

September 2009      
The Fabric – Halo Blind [Nautical Records NAUTCD004]
Producer, songwriter, performer, recording engineer, mix engineer.

August 2009             
Pass the Clock – Mostly Autumn [Autumn Records AUT0033]
Songwriter, performer.

March 2009
Imperial Measures – The Yards [Industrial Erotica Records IERCD002]
Recording engineer.

February 2008 
13th Star – Fish [Chocolate Frog Records CF1402207]

November 2007        
Offerings – Odin Dragonfly [Independent]
 Recording engineer.

February 2007          
Heart Full of Sky – Mostly Autumn [Mostly Autumn Records AUT0933]
Songwriter, performer, recording engineer.

November 2006        
Heart Full of Sky: Special Edition - Mostly Autumn [Mostly Autumn Records AUT0932]
​Songwriter, performer, recording engineer.

March 2006               
Storms Over London Town – Mostly Autumn [Mostly Autumn Records AUT6333]
Sound designer.

November 2005       
Spirit of Christmas Past – Mostly Autumn [Autumn Records AUT9333]
Performer, sound designer.

October 2005                        
Storms Over Still Water – Mostly Autumn [Autumn Records 1770]

September 2004 
The Northern Country – The Evernauts [Nautical Records NAUTCD002]
Producer, songwriter, performer, recording engineer, mix engineer.

December 1999        ­
Lo Beams – Lo Beams [Circular Productions CIRCCD002]
Performer, producer.


Film Productions

October 2011

End of the Innocents - (USA) Drama, 35mm, 27min, Dir: Deborah Chesher USA
Responsible for sound editing, dialogue editing, sound design and song production.

January 2007

Yorkshire Skies: Pilot - Documentary, DV, 20 mins, Prod: BNT, ITV Yorkshire
Concepts, sound design and dubbing mix for experimental 'non-verbal narration' developmental film for ITV Yorkshire.

September 2006
Ahlaam - (Iraq) Drama, 35mm, 110min, Dir: Mohammed Al-Daradji, Human Film/Iraq Al-Rafdeen
Responsible for the sound design and audio editing of the climactic final reel of the award winning international feature film.

July 2006
Mum - Drama, 16mm, 7 mins, Dir: Gustav Thornel, Northern Film School
Responsible for sound design and dubbing mix on this short festival film.


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