Becoming an Online Singer: Mackenzie Johnson

Becoming an Online Singer: Mackenzie Johnson
“The internet is becoming a career launch pad for lots of young artists these days. I take pride in being one of them.” –says Mackenzie Johnson

Mackenzie Johnson is a 22-year old singer-songwriter from Philadelphia who has built an amazing audience on YouTube in a short period of time – nearly 200,000 have subscribed.

But her career highlight was dedicating one of her videos to a fan who was battling cancer and seeing how much that meant to her.


The biggest challenge in the beginning was the sheer vulnerability I felt

What is an area of your career that is a little (or a lot) unique or different?
Just 10 years ago, building a career and a following online wasn’t even a possibility for artists like me. So, I think it’s pretty unique that I was able to find my footing as an artist online, beginning my career on YouTube.

One influential singer?
Ed Sheeran. His talent is remarkable, his songwriting is totally ingenious, his style is so unique; he’s really proven himself to be a game changer in the industry.

Biggest challenge to breaking out and sharing your music with new people?
I think the biggest challenge in the beginning was the sheer vulnerability I felt sharing my thoughts and feelings with the world.

Something’s that’s worked for you in reaching a larger audience?
I think that being musically versatile has really helped me find a wide array of fans around the world with varying tastes in music.

A performance FAIL?
At the very first open mic night I ever played, my guitar kept going out of tune so I kept having to stop, retune and start the song over again like 3 separate times – I was so flustered, it was so embarrassing!


A performance SUCCESS – and why…?
The first time I ever played my song, “Pretty” live felt like such a success because I got to witness firsthand the crowd’s reaction to a song that meant so much to me.

Favorite Vocal Gear and why?
I love my MXL 991 condenser microphone so much because there’s something about it that really captures the warmth in my voice.

A musical lesson you’ve learned the hard way?
Overthinking any kind of performance or audition is something I’ve found to be detrimental in most cases; it’s important to be prepared but I’ve learned to just go with the flow.

A vocal-singing lesson you’ve learned the hard way?
I’ve learned that not warming up is something of which to be wary because it can really hinder a performance.

A few ingredients of a memorable vocal performance?
Anticipation, excitement, nerves, family, friends, good music; my first gig.


Performing live and performing on YouTube provide different opportunities

Most important lesson you have learned about social media?
I’ve the learned that it’s so important to utilize social media to the best of your ability and to be active on these platforms because they’re invaluable tools right there for anyone wanting to be heard or trying to build a fan base.

Most important lesson you have learned about vocal health?
I’ve learned to cherish my voice and to consciously care for it not only because I rely on it for what I do, but because it’s the only one I’ve got.

A question you wished we asked you – and your answer?
Where do you envision yourself and your music in the future?I see myself releasing a debut album of music I’m proud to call my own, touring the world, meeting fans, and being happy and healthy.

What does YouTube do for you?
Although I made my rounds playing coffeehouses and small venues, YouTube has given me a plethora of opportunities. I get to interact and work with all kinds of different artists from around the world, make a video every week and know that my little army of amazing fans will be right there watching, and there’s comfort in knowing that there are new people discovering my music everyday and new opportunities just waiting for me.

MackenzieJohnson Bio

My name is Mackenzie Johnson and I’m an acoustic pop singer-songwriter from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After performing in small venues around Philly for a couple of years, I decided to devote my time to growing my YouTube channel. 15 million views and nearly 200K subscribers later, here I am!

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