- About Us
- The Bands
- Blog / News
- Contact Us
Born on Independence Day in 1941 to Conrad O. Johnson Sr. and Birdie Wilson Johnson, Conrad Johnson Jr. was the oldest to three siblings in Third Ward, Houston.
He began his education at Booker T. Washington High School before being transferred to Kashmere Gardens High School. Upon graduation from high school, he attended Texas Southern University (TSU), where he earned a Bachelor of Science in chemistry with a minor in mathematics in 1966.
Conrad’s interest in music remained a constant throughout his childhood, high school and college years as a member of the TSU marching band. After graduating from college, he helped as equipment manager with his father’s namesake Big Band, combos and the children’s and youth orchestras. As his father’s name became more widespread, Conrad was entrusted with contract negotiations and documentation for the numerous performances.
Upon the death of his father, he now assists with performances and fundraising events involving the Conrad O. Johnson Regional Youth Orchestra and The Conrad O. Johnson Music and Arts Foundation Youth Orchestra. He also divides his time with the newly formed Kashmere Reunion Stage Band and the Conrad Johnson Orchestra, which includes numerous events and the various public relations activities related to the documentary, “ThunderSoul. “
Ensuring that his father’s music never ends, Conrad also works with The Conrad O. Johnson Orchestra (formerly the Heritage Band, Big Blue Sound and Big Band), which continues to showcase tremendous longevity and talent for the more than 45 years. Throughout, Conrad has had the fortune of meeting great artists who have performed with the orchestra as guest artists, such as Donald Wilkerson (The Texas Twister), Arnett Cobb, Shelley Carrol, Kirk Whalum, Johnnie Reason, Carl Lott Sr., Barrie Lee Hall and Carl Lott Jr.
For Conrad, the countless and tireless energy put forth in keeping his father’s legacy alive continues to be a labor of love.
Wendi J. Turner has worked for over 10 years in community outreach. She specializes in positively impacting at-risk youth and adults by means of “relationship empowerment.” Realizing the need to extend her services for those who have no voice, she dedicated her efforts to bring liberation and relevancy to those in the Houston and surrounding areas. Wendi graduated with honors from the University of Houston, she earned her undergraduate degree while remaining active with various outreach programs in faith based organizations, national organizations such as United Way, and animal shelter programs.
She has been invited as a featured keynote speaker on radio, television interviews and as a seminar leader for youth summer and winter programs; conducting workshops and classes on abstinence, diversity and tolerance, conflict resolution, anger management and college readiness. She has also spoken in many churches, sharing her passion for people through inspirational messages. Currently, she is teaching professional development classes to teachers nationwide as well as collaborating with leaders in education on strategies to improve better working relationships with their employees as it relates to empathy and rapport building.
Granddaughter of Conrad Johnson. Entrepreneur for over twenty years. She is the merchandising executive and seeks to continue Prof’s legacy by engaging consumers with all things “Prof.”
Educator and Consultant. Worked for many years in HISD and with HCC. Received his undergraduate and masters from TSU and His doctorate from Ohio State University. Is the son of Conrad Johnson. Loves to hunt, fish, and travel.
My name is Flora Johnson Thomas. I am the youngest child and only daughter of Conrad O. Johnson. I am presently a wife and mom. I have been an entrepreneur for 28 years.
I was under Prof’s tutelage through Junior and Senior High School. Some of my fondest childhood memories of Prof were when he would take me to the Ringling Brothers Carnival. It was a real treat when the circus came to town because I knew I would get to spend quality time with my dad. He also exposed me to a very diverse group of musicians. He took me to see Duke Ellington, Roland Hayes, Liberace, James Brown and a group of Russian dancers. I could not appreciate anybody back then except James Brown, but now I truly appreciate them all. I also met a few great entertainers through Prof as well such Grover Washington, Quincy Jones, Jerry Butler and Richard Roundtree.
Prof was always there to give me sage advice when I needed it. One of his favorite quotes was “If you make your bed hard, you will have to lie in it.” That is still a part of my life today.
My mom was known to everyone as Mama Birdie. She was Prof’s backbone. She was there as well to support and help us through life’s situations. She was the glue that held our family together. One thing the Johnson household had to get adjusted to was listening to music at anytime, day or night. Whenever the mood hit Prof, he would wake up and begin to play his sax at 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning. It did not matter what your agenda was, he would play his music. He was a man on a mission. I can really laugh about it now.
If you lived in the Johnson Household, you had to play an instrument. Occasionally I will pick up my flute and play, but it’s not quite the same.
One thing I can say, that there was never a dull moment on Rosewood Street, at the Johnson house, sometimes known as Grand Central Station.