Where to Begin was released on Friday, November 8 and is available at our shows, on this website and on all streaming services. This record was born from rehearsals during early summer in preparation for our 30-year career anniversary and Road Show held in Montana – which culminated with an unforgettable sold-out concert in Bozeman at the Gallatin County Fairgrounds. As we were looking back and relearning songs from our younger years, something surprising happened. We discovered new meaning, new life and deeper appreciation for them. It was as if these early songs were actually meant for this stage in our lives, and for our voices of today. This reflection has also been a rediscovery of who we are at our core – two friends who choose to write and craft music together – and then yearn to share our creations with others. 

For Where to Begin we went back to where we began… at Peak Recording Studio in Bozeman. Our old friend Gil Stober, the very same engineer who in 1989 recorded our first tape, Chris & Johnny, was quick to welcome us, commemorate our 30-year mile marker and applaud the vision for this project.  We captured 12 tracks – some known by many for decades and others rarely, if ever performed, and maybe new to your ears. They are: Mentors, I Am a Lover, Whipporwill, Satisfied Land, Crescent Moon, She Holds My Heart Out In The Wind, Shapeshifter, Campfire on the Taylor Fork, Storm, Inside Emotion, Pancho & Lefty and Things I Love. We approached the recording exactly how we perform – the two of us playing our guitars and singing for live, in-studio captures… and counted on the magic of that synergy we’ve known and strived for for so long.

As Storyhill celebrates 30 years of making music together, I’m going to highlight their 15 albums and my favorite tracks from each of them. First up, Shapeshifting. Released in 1991, Shapeshifting may be the album that introduced many of you longtime fans to Chris and Johnny. My favorite tracks are Mentors (who is singing the third harmony?) and Things I Love. I get an extra smile on my face when they pull out Things I Love at concerts as it’s been with them for so long!

What are your favorite tracks off Shapeshifting that they should be practicing for the 30th anniversary celebration? Let us know!

Is your cassette or CD worn out? Shapeshifting is available online at Bandcamp.


Shapeshifting on cassette!

Hello all, Jim Kowitz here. Today is an exciting day at the Storyhill camp. For the first time in their 30 years of making music, Storyhill is releasing an album on vinyl! Our most recent live album, Stages, has been remastered, pressed and shipped and is now available to purchase through our online store. It is limited edition double LP with 22 tracks, including 6 that weren’t on the original Stages CD.

Stages was a fun and nostalgic album to create. After Chris and John decided to go on hiatus in 2015, I spent many hours listening to archives we have of them performing songs from Dovetail, Storyhill (self-titled) and Shade of the Trees. I also found great versions of their newest songs that I wanted all of you to hear. We discussed getting these recordings to you and working with our good friend @Alex Oana to make it happen.

Since I played a role in selecting the tracks for Stages, they are all meaningful to me. But if I had to pick two that standout, they would be Blazing Out of Sight and World Go Round. Blazing Out of Sight is a fun story song that provides so much imagery about young love situations. You can’t help but smile with you hear lines like “I just stood there watching the phone ring until it was done.” We’ve all been there!

World Go Round is Storyhill captured at their best. This may be my favorite song from the album. The quality of the performance, how succinct the guys were that night in Zumbrota, MN and the mastering Alex executed make this track timeless. This is the song I play when I want to a new listener to hear Chris and Johnny’s amazing talent!

If you want a total different Storyhill listening experience, I encourage you to get a copy of Stages on vinyl, you won’t be disappointed!


This coming summer marks a major milestone in our 30-year musical career!

After graduating from high school back in 1989, we spent a day at Peak Recording in Bozeman, Montana and made a record, a cassette simply titled Chris & Johnny. Little did we know back then how far that experience would take us; from weekly pub gigs in college, full-time national touring, landing a record deal with a highly reputable label, and many appearances on well-known, highly praised festivals, venues and stages (Kerrville, APHC, Mountain Stage, Falcon Ridge…the list goes on).

To celebrate this milestone with you, our loyal fanbase who have been listening and encouraging us all these years, we have created a customized one-time event – a 30th Anniversary Celebration – scheduled for July 24-27, 2019 to be hosted in and around our hometown of Bozeman in the most beautiful part of the state. We are so excited to be your personal hosts for this special experience and have two options for your participation and enjoyment.

Check out our 30th Anniversary Celebration page!

Stages will be released on Friday, November 16. The record includes 16 tracks recorded on several ‘stages’ we visited while touring between 2003 and 2015. Each individual track captures a moment in time when we knew there was connection. We connected with the people in the room, but also connected with each other. You may hear some ambient sounds in the background of some of the tracks, but you if you listen carefully, you’ll hear what some people call our signature sound: two voices, two guitars, and the tight ethereal harmonies that continue to surprise and delight old and new fans.

We are very excited about the work our Storyhill team put into making this album come to life. Once again, we turned to our good friend and audio wizard Alex Oana, with his keen ear and knowledge of our combined talents to mix a new live Storyhill album that you’ll enjoy for years to come.

Stages will be available on tour with us this fall, at our website and on all of your favorite online music platforms. Reserve your copy today!

Tour Dates

We are excited to hit the road after a nearly four-year hiatus from touring. We’ll be kicking things off this week with a quick trip through Minnesota and then heading west through Montana later in the month. Tickets are moving fast for our shows. Check out our tour stops below and get your tickets today if you’d like to see us on the road. More information is available on our newly designed website.

Here are our updated performance dates and locations:

Thursday, November 15, 2018 – SOLD OUT!    
The Loft at Studio J   

Stillwater, MN
7:30 p.m.

Friday, November 16, 2018 – SOLD OUT!
State Theatre

Zumbrota, MN
7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 17, 2018 – SOLD OUT!
Hopkins Center for the Arts

Hopkins, MN
7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 18, 2018
Sacred Heart Music Center

Duluth, MN
7:00 p.m.

Thursday, November 29, 2018
Covellite Theatre

Butte, MT
7:30 p.m.

Friday, November 30, 2018
KM Theatre

Kalispell, MT
7:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 1, 2018
The Roxy Theater

Missoula, MT
7:30 p.m.

Sunday, December 2, 2018 – SOLD OUT!
The Rialto

Bozeman, MT
7:30 p.m.

We are blown away by the response from the 350 friends and fans who pledged over $35K to help bring Stages to life. Now that our Kickstarter campaign has wrapped up, we are now turning our attention to the release of Stages and our fall tour.

Tickets are now on-sale for our upcoming shows in Minnesota and Montana. We are visiting some familiar venues with stops at new ones, as well. Check out our Shows page to secure your tickets today. They are moving fast!

We can’t say thank you enough. We feel very fortunate to have amazing fans, fans who supported two young songwriters from Bozeman, were with us through college at St. Olaf, followed us around during our heavy touring through the Midwest in the mid-90s, pushed us to new heights in new places in the 2000s, and shared time with us on cruise ships, folk festivals and at our very own memorable Storyhill Fests.

Our journey would never have happened without you – thanks for being part of the ride!

Steady on,

Chris and Johnny

New CD and Tour!!

Hello friends, 

It has been a couple years since we sent our last update. Hopefully this finds you well! While on hiatus from Storyhill, we’ve been busy with our individual projects, families, and careers. But during that time away, there has always been a calling to get back to it. Get back to making music together. Get back to sharing our music with you. Get back to this community that we’ve known and loved for nearly 30 years.

The wait is over. 

We’ve had the opportunity to play some pretty amazing stages during our time together. Since our ‘reunion’ in the early 2000s, our reach expanded and our fanbase grew. And while all of that happen, we played some great sets together. We were fortunate to capture some of those moments by recording shows at venues large and small across the country.

While away, we rediscovered some of these gems. Since we haven’t released a live record since 2002, we felt the time has come for a new live album. It is with great excitement that we announce the release of Stages.

Scheduled for release on November 16th, Stages captures 15 live performances of songs from our studio albums Dovetail, our self-titled disc Storyhill, Shade of the Trees and a couple unreleased songs. The Storyhill team has culled the archives to find individual performances that captured our ears and our hearts. Though the performances may not be perfect, each song archives a moment in our collective musical career that has meaning to us. And now, hopefully for you, too.

To get this new album into your hands and headphones, we’re launching a Kickstarter campaign to help fund its creation. Over the next 21 days, we’re looking to you, our Storyhill family, to visit the Stages Kickstarter website and contribute if you are able. We’ve put together some fun packages to reward you for your contributions to this record.

We need your help to make it come to life. As we work our way through the 21 day campaign, we will share updates on the album, including the track list, bonus disc tracks, and other information on this album. We are confident that you’ll love it. Head on over to our Kickstarter page and check out the campaign. 

Fall Tour!

To celebrate the release of Stages, and after a nearly four-year hiatus from touring, we are hitting the road for a tour through Minnesota and Montana. Ticket information is now available on our Shows page. We’d love to see you on the road and help us celebrate Stages.

We’re very excited to bring Stages into this world and reconnect with you on tour. It’s hard to believe we started this almost 30 years ago in our hometown of Bozeman, Mont. and have watched it grow into the community it is today. We thank you for your support throughout those years, whether we’ve been recording and touring, or taking time away to recharge our batteries and reignite our passion for performing.

Thanks for your love and support through all stages of our career. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Chris & Johnny

Hello friends,

We hope this newsletter finds you well.  We recently returned from a quick weekend tour in North Carolina. It was great to play old favorites and some of our newest songs. Thanks to all of those who came out – it was a memorable time and excellent hospitality.

We are busy planning the next couple of months for Storyhill. As we mentioned in a previous email, we’ll be taking a hiatus from the road after our commitments through May. After much deliberation, we’ve decided to put touring and our cherished Storyhill Fest on the back burner for the time being. But before we say farewell (for now), we have a cruise in the Caribbean with A Prairie Companion AND a final tour through Minnesota. Here are the details:

A Prairie Home Companion Cruise – March 2015
We are thrilled and honored to be joining Garrison Keillor on the next A Prairie Home Companion’s Eastern Carribean Cruise, scheduled to sail March 14-21, 2015. Only limited suites are remaining, so if you’re thinking about joining us, book your tickets now! We’ll be making stops at Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Maarten, and Half Moon Cay. Information and ticket sales are available here!

Hiatus Tour
Later this spring we’ll be in Minnesota for one last tour before taking a break. Along for the tour will be our good friend and the amazing artist, Connor Garvey. Known as “CoGar” among the songwriter community, Connor has been a stand out staple at Storyhill Fests and recently took home top awards at the Rocky Mountain Folks Fest, Kerrville Folk Festival, Solarfest, and the prestigous Falcon Ridge Folk Festival.

Here are the tour stops:

Thursday, April 30 – Stillwater, MN: The Loft at Studio J.
This will be an intimate show in a unique space in downtown Stillwater. There are two ticket options: one includes a VIP experience before the show – including appetizers, a cash bar, meet and greet, and a special gift from us. The other is a concert only ticket. http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/1197526

Friday, May 1 – Zumbrota, MN:The State Theater.

A great theater just south of the Twin Cities. Always a great audience in Zumbrota! https://www.vendini.com/ticket-software.html?t=tix&e=e3095e7504184b2dfa628a4b0f922465

Sunday, May 3 – St. Paul, MN: The History Theatre.

This will be the final show before the hiatus. This is the theater where our double live CD Reunion was recorded back in 2001.  There’s not a bad seat in the house!


These will be our final shows together for the foreseeable future. We’d love to have you to join us as we close this chapter in our career together.

Thanks for all of your continued support through this transitional period. It truly means the world to us.  We so appreciate the energy and enthusiasm for Storyhill – and all the years of diligent work and dedication that our team has put in to keeping the boats afloat; it is both humbling and inspiring.

Although we don’t know yet what will happen after these swan song events, we are clear there will be a future for us and for Storyhill sometime down the road. We love to make and share our music with you.

Steady on!

Chris and Johnny

Hello everyone,

We hope you’re enjoying the changing season and anticipating a warm, relaxing Thanksgiving weekend. We wanted to tell you about what’s in our world.

For the last couple of years we’ve been working toward releasing a new album and getting back on the road. For many personal reasons and after much discussion and deliberation, we’ve recently made the tough decision that we need to put those plans and Storyhill Fest on the back burner for now. 

At this point we don’t know what the future holds for Storyhill. We’re very much looking forward to our upcoming shows in Montana, North Carolina, and on the Prairie Home Companion Cruise in March – and plans are being made for more shows in Minnesota and Montana this spring. But following those commitments, we don’t have any definite plans to tour after spring of 2015 or record a new record.

Storyhill Fest has been a life changing experience for us – and it’s hard to imagine not being a part of that unique community next year. It’s been a privilege to host so many of you on Hyalite and Clearwater Lakes these past nine years. We’re grateful for the work and heart our manager, Jim Kowitz, and the volunteers have put into it to make it happen.   

If you have any questions about this announcement or about Storyhill Fest, please reach out to us at manager@storyhill.com.

When we broke up in 1997 we thought that would be it for us. But we gained a lot of valuable perspective during those four years and we found our way back to Storyhill. While we don’t know what the future holds for us now, we know we love singing together. And we love it most when you’re there to hear it! Your support over the years has meant the world to us. We are blessed to have you in our lives. Let’s be in touch. . .

Steady On! 

Chris and Johnny