Cody Johnson Credits Hard Work and God With Signing Major Record Label Deal

Cody Johnson is going where no man – and no country artist – has gone before. The 31-year-old is releasing his seventh studio album, Ain't Nothin' to It early next year, on Warner Music Nashville. But what makes Johnson stand out is that the record will be released on Warner's new imprint, CoJo Records, created especially for Johnson.

"It comes from being ten years, working hard on the road," Johnson told "When you're independent, you have to go out, and you have to do it what I consider to be the hard way. And thankfully because of people in the Texas Regional Radio Report, which consists of about eight to 12 states, we did have a little bit of radio play. We've had six independent albums. The album that we have coming out in January, called Ain't Nothin' to It, is a co-venture between myself and Warner Music Nashville. The record was completely recorded by myself and Trent Willmon, my producer beforehand."

"We were going to put it out independently, and Warner Music Nashville came to the table with what is basically a 50/50, we're not going to try to change you deal," he continued. "That's the only kind of deal I was going to sign anyway. Timing is everything. God's got a plan. If you think you've got plans tell him and He'll laugh, and so here we are."

Johnson's debut single from Ain't Nothin' to It, "On My Way to You," is already in the Top 15.

"It's crazy," Johnson said. "People call it new traditional. I always say if Bruce Springsteen played country music, it would be that energetic. The live show is really what it's all about. That's what we base these records around is what it does to our live show. A huge shout-out to the fans that have been there for us all this time.

"On My Way to You" reminded Johnson of his relationship with his wife, Brandi, even though it's a song he didn't write.

"From the first time I heard it, I went, 'Oh, my Lord. What is this?'" Johnson recalled to Billboard. "It seems autobiographical of myself, from my journey to my wife, to the career path that I've taken. It talks about the bumps, and the bruises, and the hard times along the way, and the negatives that wind up being the positives. And man, and it spoke so hard to me. I thought, I said, 'Did Tony Lane and Brett James know that we were cutting a record? Did they write this specifically for me?'"

"It couldn't have been any more perfect," he added. "I mean, I can sit here and lie to you and say I wished I had written it. But if I had a hand in writing it, it might not be as good."


Ain't Nothin' to It will be released on Jan. 18. Pre-order the record, and find a list of all of his upcoming shows, at

Photo Credit: Getty images:/Nicholas Hunt