The Entertainment Guide

Chad Johnson and His Minnesota Transplants are on a Roll


Chad Johnson has been in the music industry for a long time. He was part of many bands as a teenager and young adult, has been a solo artist and was notably the co-front man of the very popular 8th Street Band for many years. When the 8th Street Band came to an end in 2018, Johnson set out in a new direction, joined by 8th Street Band drummer, Andy Jaynes. 

In the process of releasing his most promising album to date, What We’ve Become (2018), Johnson crossed paths with bass player, Makai (Kai) Catudio, formerly of the Jason Paulson Band, which developed the group into a trio. Later, a chance meeting brought lead guitarist, Jeenti Dutta, into the band. Dutta is a seasoned professional, having toured internationally with his previous band, Papon. Johnson is a lifelong Minnesotan, while his band hails from other parts. Jaynes comes to us from Colorado, Catudio from the great island of Hawaii and Dutta all the way from India. In the spirit of this, the name, The Minnesota Transplants, was born. For short, they are the MN-T’s. 

chad-johnsonIn 2017 and 2018, Johnson and the 8th Street Band headlined the Saturday night entertainment for Defeat of Jesse James Days, drawing record-breaking crowds to the tent. While Chad Johnson and The Minnesota Transplants performed on Saturday of the 2019 festival, it was not in the entertainment tent, but at the Reunion in downtown Northfield. The band packed the venue to full capacity. In 2020, in lieu of in-person entertainment, Chad Johnson and The Minnesota Transplants hosted the Saturday night Defeat of Jesse James Days entertainment from his back yard, as a livestream fundraiser for the DJJD Committee. This year Chad Johnson and The Minnesota Transplants are again headlining the Defeat of Jesse James Days Saturday entertainment on Sept. 11 from 9pm-1am in the Entertainment Center, and it is a performance not to be missed. They’re planning a night of excellent music, including the official song of Defeat of Jesse James Days, Minnesota Nice. Special guests will join the band on stage, and a musical tribute to the anniversary of 9-11 is also planned. 

For more information about Chad Johnson and The Minnesota Transplants, visit or subscribe to their YouTube channel “Chad Johnson.” 

by Kari Freund 


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