African Americans on Postage Stamps

James P. Johnson

Jazz Composer and Pianist

32-cent James P. Johnson stamp
The James P. Johnson stamp was issued on September 16, 1995.

Known as the “father of stride piano,” James P. Johnson was a great pianist and composer. In 1923 he composed “The Charleston,” perhaps the most famous musical piece to come out of the “Roaring Twenties.” His innovative use of the left hand to provide rhythmic, recurrent, and harmonic intensities influenced Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Erroll Garner, and Thelonious Monk.

The Black Experience