The Ultimate Bearhug
indie-folk from Santa Ana California
Contact DetailsKristine Acosta
A chance encounter at a Southern California loft party in late 2010 sparked a collaboration between the two songwriters at the heart of indie folk-duo The Ultimate Bearhug - the name simply being a reference to their hope that their music “will hug you.” Doll Knight and Barrett Johnson’s impromptu conversation evolved into a late night songwriting session with immediate musical chemistry. As Johnson tells it, “That same night we almost completed a full song and knew we couldn’t stop there.” And indeed, they haven’t. With overwhelming encouragement from local songwriters, the pair spent the following year patiently writing and playing shows at Hotel Cafe in Los Angeles. The result is their debut full-length album, Just South of Los Angeles – a true gem of a composition recorded with Dallas Kruse at his Zion Studios in Santa Ana, CA. Just South of Los Angeles brings together ten exquisite songs, including three arrangements for a string quartet. The album bridges the gap between timeless Folk and Indie/Pop, all anchored by Doll’s uniquely expressive and haunting vocals and Barrett’s intricate songwriting which have elicited equal praise and have drawn numerous comparisons to Billie Holiday and Madeleine Peyroux. As they’ve proven, sometimes a moment is all it takes to ﬁnd a perfect symbiosis, and just a few minutes with the music of The Ultimate Bearhug has the power to cast a similar spell between artist and listener.