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Orin Johnson grew up in Tyler, Minnesota, in the Southwestern part of the state. Tyler is in Lincoln County, one of the only counties in all of Minnesota without a stoplight. Yes, no stoplight. Unless you count the one at the Gas Station Car Wash; most people don't.

His folks started him on organ and piano lessons when he was 6, with the probable intent of his playing in his hometown parish, St. Dionysius in Tyler, Minnesota. He started playing there, for Stations of the Cross, when he was 11, and started playing for Masses shortly after that. He also played the trombone and sang through high school.

In college, Harvard University, he was active in the men’s chorus, the Catholic Student Association Choir, and several other shows and other musical tidbits. He began seriously writing music about this time, after taking a few classes and realizing he had at least some little ability in the area.

After four years at Harvard (AB in Music and Folklore and Mythology) and two at Radford (MA in Choral Conducting), Orin arrived at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows, in Belleville, IL, near St. Louis, MO, where he was coordinator of music and liturgy from 1998-2012. Since 2012 he has been director of music ministries at Sts. Joachim and Ann Parish in St. Charles, MO.

In December of 2000, he met Erin Hammond. To make a long story ridiculously short, they married on November 27, 2004. They reside in St. Louis with their dog, Gracie.

Beyond Erin and his ministry at Sts. Joachim and Ann Parish, Orin also enjoys singing with the St. Louis Chamber Chorus and serving as their Assistant Conductor. He holds an MA in Theology from Aquinas Institute of Theology, and accompanies services at Shaare Emeth Temple in St. Louis. He is one half of Oddwalk Ministries, an itinerant music and witnessing duo with Shannon Cerneka. He has been Assistant Director for the St. Louis Archdiocesan Chorus; he’s also sung with and rehearsed with the St. Louis Symphony Chorus, is music minister at Chaminade College Prep, and does worship aid design for the Archdiocese of St. Louis. And many other things, as time permits.