Jay-Jay Johanson was born Jaje Johansson on 11 October 1969 in Trollhattan, Vastra Gotaland. His debut album, Whiskey, was released in August 1996. Recorded at Break My Heart Studios in the Stockholm archipelago, the album was characterized by its jazzy vocals over trippy, film noir arrangements.
In 1998, Johanson released Tattoo, taking a step into a more richly textured, poetic ambience. Johansson’s third album, Poison, was released in April 2000 and went straight into the French charts at number four. The album featured contributions from The Cocteau Twins founder and guitarist Robin Guthrie. The same year Johanson also composed the soundtrack to French director Ilan Duran Cohen’s film La Confusion des Genres, and in 2001, Johanson emerged with “Cosmodrome”, a sound-and-image installation first exhibited in the French city of Dijon. This art-piece has travelled around the world and was last shown at the Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris.
Antenna was released in 2002, recorded with assistance from German experimental electronic group Funkstorung. 2004 marked the release of the compilation Prologue, meant for the American market. It was followed by Rush in 2005, an album partly produced by French producer Jean-Pierre Ensuque.
Johanson co-wrote and contributed vocals to The Knife’s 2006 song “Marble House”. In the spring of 2006, he called together the musicians he had worked with on the three first albums, and January 2007 saw the release of their collaborative effort The Long Term Physical Effects Are Not Yet Known. A tour in promotion of the album kicked off in China and continued to more than thirty cities around the world.