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Musician Johanna Rose Is Using The Pandemic To Focus On Solo Work

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Lex Allen
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Milwaukee-based musician Johanna Rose playing guitar.

For musician Johanna Rose, the pandemic has been a mixed blessing.

The time in isolation has meant they haven't been able to perform with the many groups they're a member of, including Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the Hughes Family Band, and the musical duo Nickel & Rose. But it has given them time to focus on their solo work and explore new ways to create music. 

Rose recently released their first solo album, Postponedalone, as well as an EP called Only Good Nites. The latter includes a song by the same name that started off in the studio but was finished by musicians performing at home. 

"So this is all from people’s homes and they sent in the files and then we mixed it all together ... So it was kind of like, bridging the studio, the times of before and then completing it in quarantine," Rose explains. 

Another song, "The One That I Call," was created entirely from isolation. Rose mixed it together using a program they learned while in quarantine. 

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Listen to "The One That I Call," and Johanna Rose talks with Lake Effect's Joy Powers about the process of creating an entire song in quarantine

The song "I Should Leave" was actually written a while ago, but Rose felt compelled to release it because of sexual assualt allegations in the DIY music community and their own experience with sexual assualt. 

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Listen to "I Should Leave," and Johanna Rose talks with Lake Effect's Joy Powers about deciding to release the song in the wake of allegations of sexual assaults against Burger Records.

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Joy Powers joined WUWM January 2016 as producer for Lake Effect. Most recently, she was a director and producer for The Afternoon Shift, on WBEZ-fm, Chicago Public Radio.