TriStateRodeo

It's going to be a great year at the Tri State Rodeo in Fort Madison, Iowa this year, September 7,8&9th! Get ready for the best fast paced rodeo around and concerts featuring National Recording Acts with 965 Kiss Country, Cody Johnson, Smash Mouth and Jon Pardi! 

Cody Johnson is no stranger to the rodeo arena. After briefly attending Angelina College in Lufkin, Texas, he traded in his books to become a professional bull rider. Johnson did okay in that sport – the oversized belt buckle he wears today was won fair and square on the back of a bucking bull – but he broke a litany of bones: his right leg, his left arm, two ribs and his right collarbone. “That’s a very, very rough sport to be in,” Johnson notes. “It’s very, very rough on your body. It’s very rough on your mind, and it’s scary. I mean there’s not a professional bull rider that won’t tell you it’s not scary. If it wasn’t scary, we wouldn’t do it.”

His current Gotta Be Me project, paints him as a cowboy, raised on outlaw country, who drinks too much, fights too much and won’t apologize for having an opinion. By the time the 14-track journey is over, he’s shared his rodeo history in “The Only One I Know (Cowboy Life),” demonstrated his woman’s influence in “With You I Am” and paid homage to his gospel heritage in “I Can’t Even Walk.” This album is loaded with solid country instrumentation and winsome melodies.

His love of music was passed down from his father, who played drums for their congregation at church. The drums were the first instrument Cody picked up, “Learning drums first taught me about feeling the song – feeling that dynamic of when it’s supposed to be big and when it’s supposed to be soft,” he says. “

Johnson learned guitar next, and when a teacher heard him playing an original song, he convinced Johnson to form a band with a few other students enrolled in the Future Farmers of America. Just a few months later, that first band finished runner-up in a Texas State FFA talent contest, creating an internal buzz that Johnson would continue to chase.

Not thinking music was his life’s calling, he pursued the pro rodeo circuit. Cody started recording his own music during that phase of his life, beginning with Black And White Label, which featured his dad, Carl, on drums. Johnson sold the CDs, pressed on his own CoJo imprint, from his pickup.

Eventually, Cody took a job at the prison to pay the bills. His band kept hitting the clubs on the weekend, with Johnson kept banging away on the guitar on Fridays and Saturdays while overseeing some very hardened convicts whose crimes had cut them off from humanity.

Meanwhile, his weekend crowds began to grow, and Johnson started landing hits on the Texas music charts. After the release of his third album, he won New Male Vocalist of the Year in the Texas Regional Radio Music Awards.

With the support of his then, fiancée, he put his full effort into making it on the country music scene. After many sacrifices, hard work and employing the right songwriter, Cody broke onto the Billboard chart with “Cowboy Like Me”.

Which brings us back to today and the Cody Johnson who will be performing at the Tri-State Rodeo. In essence, Gotta Be Me (his newest project) documents the life of a guy who’s lived in the fast lane as a beer-drinkin’, rodeo-ridin’ cowboy, but who’s also seen just enough darkness to temper that wild streak.

Johnson delivers it all with an uncanny confidence. His smoky baritone and ultra-Southern enunciations give him a voice as uniquely identifiable as country kingpins Jason Aldean or Tim McGraw. And he uses it to convey a Texas-proud swagger, a real-man charm and an unwavering honesty about who he is, where he comes from and where he hopes to go.

“I’m a God-fearin’, hard-workin’, beer-drinkin’, fightin’, lovin’ cowboy from Texas,” he grins. “That’s about it.

Multi-platinum, Grammy nominated band, Smash Mouth will grace the stage at the Tri-State Rodeo on Friday, September 8th.  They will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of their debut, smash-hit album “Fush Yu Mang”, released July 8th, 1997.  Out of nowhere, the single “Walkin’ On The Sun” was an immediate international sensation. (Quickly shooting to #1 on the Billboard charts, and eventually boosting “FYM” sales to over 3 million copies in the U.S. alone.) In the two decades since, Smash Mouth has not slowed down. In fact, they are as vital and vibrant as ever.Smash Mouth didn’t slow down after the success of “FYM”, they racked up a string of top-ten hits, including “All-Star”, “Then The Morning Comes”, and “Can’t Get Enough Of You Baby” with their follow-up album Astro Lounge which approached quadruple platinum.

Smash Mouth’s third, self-named album, features the jubilant first single “Pacific Coast Party” and the smash hit “I’m a Believer”. Around this time, Smash Mouth crosses over into the film world by providing the musical heart of the soundtrack for “Shrek”, and even making a cameo appearance in the movie “Rat Race”. In recent years, Smash Mouth has focused on entertaining troops in such places as Japan, Guam, Guantanamo Bay, Afghanistan, and Iraq.

A look back at Smash Mouth’s formative years shows us a band determined to make an impact from the get-go. Formed in 1994, the band immediately begins recording demos and showcasing in both San Jose and Hollywood, CA. In June of 1997, Smash Mouth is signed to Interscope Records when label brass catch wind of an unknown (and unsigned) band being ADDED to highly influential LA radio station KROQ’s playlist after only one spin (!) of their song “Walkin’ On The Sun”.2017 will also see the band releasing a new album of all-original material. And though I’m not allowed to divulge any details…look forward to seeing a whole lot of Smash Mouth on your TV screen very soon. 2017 is already shaping up to be a banner year for the veteran San Jose rockers.

Jon Pardi

The Tri-State Rodeo is proud to welcome the Academy of Country Music 2017 New Male Vocalist of the Year, Jon Pardi. Pardi’s one-of-a-kind voice, his on-stage charisma and accessibility, his polished yet raucous sound, and his well-crafted and infectious songs will attract fans old and new.

His latest project, California Sunrise and only his second studio album, has gained Pardi hard fought recognition by the country music world. “Head Over Boots” – the first single from California Sunrise – became Pardi’s fastest-rising single to date, thanks to its buoyant melody and incessant optimism. Pulling from that same upbeat viewpoint, Sunrise makes multiple allusions to fashion through such titles as “Head Over Boots,” the bouncy “Dirt On My Boots” and the suggestive “Cowboy Hat.” There’s a workman-like ethic embedded in the sweaty “Night Shift” and the pounding “Paycheck.” And there’s an innate sexiness throughout.Jon Pardi scores his second No. 1 single with “Dirt On My Boots” topping the Billboard country radio airplay chart. “”Having two back-to-back No. 1’s is unbelievable,” shares Pardi. “It’s been so great to have an album people believe in.”A natural storyteller, he writes what he knows, bringing it all together into a strong, cohesive musical statement. “I really don’t have any negative songs,” he says. “It always feels good with me so when you come to a show or listen to the record, you’re going to have a good time.”It’s not hard to see where the earliest seeds of Pardi’s approach lie. His musical journey began with a grandmother who loved classic country and had a karaoke machine in the house. Young Jon developed a special fondness for Hank Jr. and the two Georges—Jones and Strait—along with Alabama, Dwight Yoakam and Mark Chesnutt. He was just 7 when he sang “Friends in Low Places” for all he was worth at his dad’s 30th birthday party at a local Legion hall. “My dad was a super-hard worker,” Pardi explains. “Now as a grown man I really appreciate that. The area I’m from is really blue-collar, agricultural, everybody’s working, everybody’s doing something in construction, something in farming. Everybody’s just working hard. When I go back, there’s that pride there that’s like this made me who I am.”Pardi wasn’t afraid to get his hands dirty, but he mostly wanted to wrap them around a guitar. He started writing songs by the age of 12 and was in his first band at 14. By 19, he knew Nashville was in his future. Once he arrived in Music City, there was more conventional work to keep him going – he was a lifeguard at a public pool for a time – but he found his way into Nashville’s songwriting community, where he applied some of the same skills he’d learned at his father’s dusty feet. Pardi is sure to please audiences of all ages with his throwback sound and his youthful flare with songs like, “Up all Night”, “Heartache on the Dance Floor” and “California Sunrise”.