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Johnny Rodriguez

A reliable country hitmaker for much of the '70s, Johnny Rodriguez was born in Sabinal, TX, in 1951, growing up 90 miles from the Mexican border. His older brother Andres, a big country music fan, bought him a guitar when he was seven, and he was playing and singing by his teens. Rodriguez was captain of his high school football team at 16, but when his father died of cancer, he spiraled out of control, racking up four arrests in two years. While Rodriguez was serving a jail term, Texas Ranger Joaquin Jackson heard him sing and introduced him to music promoter Happy Shahan, who booked Rodriguez to work as a singing stagecoach driver at the Alamo Village Amusement Park during 1970-1971. There he was discovered by Tom T. Hall and Bobby Bare, who brought him to Nashville to join Hall's Storytellers. Not long after, Rodriguez signed with Mercury, releasing his debut single, "Pass Me By (If You're Only Passing Through)," in early 1973. It climbed into the Top Ten and turned out to be the first of 14 consecutive Rodriguez singles to do so. His next two, "Ridin' My Thumb to Mexico" and "You Always Come Back (To Hurting Me)," both hit number one.

1974 brought the Top Five hits "Dance With Me (Just One More Time)" and "We're Over," plus the number one "That's the Way Love Goes." The following year was even better, as all three of his singles -- "I Just Can't Get Her Out of My Mind," "Just Get Up and Close the Door," and "Love Put a Song in My Heart" -- hit number one. More Top Five hits followed over 1976-1977 in "I Couldn't Be Me Without You," "I Wonder If I Ever Said Goodbye," and "Desperado," but he and Mercury parted ways in 1979, upon which point he signed with Epic. "Down the Rio Grande" went Top Ten that year, but Rodriguez subsequently endured a serious commercial slump. He returned to the Top Ten in 1983 with a pair of hits, "Foolin'" and "How Could I Love Her So Much," which proved to be the last of his career; his final chart single came with 1988's Top 20 hit "I Didn't (Every Chance I Had)" on Capitol. He did record a couple of honky tonk-style records during the '90s, specifically Run for the Border (Intersound, 1993) and You Can Say That Again (Hightone, 1996). ~ Steve Huey
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

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alderipu396
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My life in the 1970's ... johnny Rodriguiz
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Love this station. My moms boyfriend told me about Johnny. I listen to it every day. Love it.
From New Braunfels Tx.
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I love this music !!! Tons of love from a girl from SA, Tx
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roglgarcia
He is a classic, texmex talent, go johnny go , best wishes from a x-texan,, R.garcia
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I Loved North of the Border, and well all the rest too!
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musicloverjj
Loved Johnny from the very first song I ever heard him sing he is still awesome
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Have always loved Mr. Rodriguez's songs.
He sing to me anytime!
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I play Ridin' My Thumb to Mexico every show. Folks love it and I still do, too. Johnny has always been one of my favorites!
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Saw you Johnny at The Coupland Inn last weekend….He' s as good as he ever was….what a fab performer….s o much fun ! We love you, Johnny!
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sylviamcleod
Always one of my favorites
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My all time favorite Johnny Rodriguez song
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barn706
I AM A ODIE KINITA AND CONDREY....
.
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I love you and your music keep making cds csierra.
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Looking forward to getting your new cds. Keep them coming. You keep getting better. Love ya now as always
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One of the most underrated country singers ever!
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lstearns57
I love you Johnny! I remember sooo well all of your hits.
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Hey johhny i just love are songe i ues go ser you in texas
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I still love to listen to you..... Please hurry and make a comeback because we love you! You are wonderful... M y r n a Gomez
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You are a different type of singer. Glad to have got to meet you so many years ago on the ranch i lived on down south
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Hey Johnny it's time for us to have another backyard party again just getting touch with David asked and he'll hook us up hope see you soon
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pfinnessey42
Hey johnny bac to mamas song A SU TUMBA . My name is Lupe Ramirez Jr. Alice Tx. 802 Jim Wells
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pfinnessey42
Johnny all I want is for u to sing w/me my mamas song that I wrote for her and recorded A SU TUMBA.
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charmels26
One of the Best in Country Music. It's so sad that Country Music is controlled by Big Business and not the fans. They only play what is allowed and most of it is NOT Country. How sad.
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Hey Jonny hope to see you again soon Danny and the sergeants
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I saw him in a benefit concert years ago. I love his music, song
selections, and singing, but thought he was a lousy entertainer.
During the concert, where most entertainers would talk with the
audience, he spent all of his time talking with his band. But--
great to listen to!
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My sisters from Mi. visiting me went to Alton, Il. to see him but he didn't show but still love to hear his music, hope he traveling again in our area so can go see him. He's great singer, love to hear hid songs.
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I met him in the 70's while he played in Carson, CA. I went on his bus and was so happy to meet & chat with him. I was supposed to meet him again the following week, but I got my days mixed up and missed it. I just love his voice and he'll always be my favorite country singer...
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elsacomulada
Love his music so much
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mom2014
1st saw him at 6 Flags Over Texas. He played right under a street light and we stood around and listened to him. Next he played the Lubbock Rodeo, my husband and I went every night just to hear him. Last time I saw him was probably the early 2000's or late 90s, he opened for George Jones in Sulphur Springs, Tx. We were on the 1st row and just was great, both of them.
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Check out his website, www.johnnyro d r i g u e z m u s i c . c o m to see where he will be playing.
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Johnny lived in Corpus Christi for several months back in 2000-2001
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One of his Biggest Fans. I went to se him perform but, when i got there he had left. I met Tom T. Hall and he signed Johnnys picture. Sure wished that i could of met him. Oh well, at least i can still listen to his music. Maybe one day he will come back to Corpus Christi,Texa s and i might get lucky and get a chance to meet him!!
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mrbmwjr
One of the best !!!
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he is a legoned
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Come back Johnny!

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i would to find his i want to wake of with you. i would also love to find any cd's by him.
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classic!!!
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Will always be one of my best.
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i have seen him at his best and worst and I still love him!! Anhalt texas remember Johnny?
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many many yrs and this is still great
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i love his voice and such a gorgeous man what is he doing today i hope him the best........ . . C a r o l e Dukart
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I have always loved Johnny Rodriquez's music. Plus he is really nice looking man. He's on my Pandora list for sure. Linda Blanton Smith
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I love his singing since he first started, i lived in a suburb of Juarez when he was born, isn't that something?? I bought his first album during the 70s and still play it over and over
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High Johnny. If you get this, sure would like to hear from you on the raido again. You can Email at w.leeper@aol . c o m if you like. Thanks.
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while working I heard johnny rodriguez and oh how it brought back memories of my childhood. We grew listening to country music, and I must say that I really enjoyed listening to the older country music. Thanks dad for giving us the enjoyment of listening to country music
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gculp410
I seen Johnny one night on tnn he was sitting in for Ralph Emory.
Johnny was so drunk he couldn't stand up. Conny Smith was on the show that night and when Johnny was intrducing her he went on about her acheivements then he abruptly said "hell she aint going to give me any anyway heres Conny Smith". After this I didn't hear of him again for several years.
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ethent to sabinal texas to see him sing on the back of aflat bed truck the same week his grand mother died you are great johnny dw lex sc 1975 i think great memories
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The first time I heard of Johnny Rodriguez was in the early 70's playing in a club on Watt Avenue, North Sacramento and all these years later his music is just as special. I am still haunted by the idea of "Riding My Thumb to Mexico," my idea of saying the hell with it and taking that as my escape. A gifted musician and a tribute to traditional country!
Eduardo Jose, Jr.
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Johnny was playing local venues here in San Antonio when I was in high school. He did a gig at The Farmer's Daughter, a then-famous small dance hall. My best friend was there. She requested a song. Johnny not only sang the song but he leaned over and gave my friend her first kiss!

I still can't listen to "That's the Way Love Goes" without puddling up. For me, it is the most special of Johnny's hits.
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