James P. JohnsonJames P. Johnson February 1, 1894 - November 17, 1955) was a pianist and composer. With Lucky Roberts, Johnson was one of the originaters of the stride style of piano playing.
Johnson's tune Charleston (which debuted in the Broadway show Runnin' Wild in 1923, although by some accounts Johnson had written years earlier) became one of the most popular tunes and arguably the definitive dance number of the Roaring 1920s. His other hits included "You've Got to be Modernistic", "Keep Off the Grass", "Old Fashioned Love", "A Porter's Love Song To A Chambermaid", "Carolina Shout", "If I Could Be With You (One Hour Tonight)", and "Snowy Morning Blues". He wrote music in many styles, including waltzes, ballet, symphonic pieces and light opera.