Cody Johnson talks up cowboy style, cologne, and a possible Christmas surprise.
Country music star Cody Johnson is in high demand. From a Wrangler 20X jeans endorsement and Resistol hat line to his own CoJo cologne, the cowboy from Texas has a lot on his plate — and that’s not to mention two albums coming out this year. We talked to him about how he manages his brand and how he sets trends (even if he doesn’t mean to).
Western & English Today: What inspired you to take on CoJo cologne?
Cody Johnson: My business partners Ricky Bolin and Woody Leath brought me a bottle of cologne, unlabeled, and asked me to use it. Immediately, I got compliments on my cologne — and that’s never happened. I just believed in the product, and I loved the way it smells.
W&E: CoJo Cologne’s tagline is “for the cowboy in you.” As a former rodeo competitor, you obviously have a cowboy in you. Does everyone?
Johnson: I believe that everybody has a little bit of cowboy in them, in the sense that everyone wants to know if they have that grit and determination to be one. That’s part of our brand, and it comes from me being a cowboy. Resistol’s slogan is, “We live it every day.” I think that whenever you put on CoJo Cologne, you do feel like you are living part of that cowboy brand every day.
W&E: You’ve been described as a Western trendsetter. How do you find (or set) the next trend?
Johnson: I’ve never once tried to set a trend. If I’ve ever set a trend, it’s completely by accident. And that’s just the power of authenticity. I don’t use products I don’t believe in. I wear things out, and if they don’t last, they don’t last long with me.
W&E: What is your vision for the Cody Johnson brand?
Johnson: Unapologetically authentic. My brand stands for that cowboy code of morals: You do what you say you’re gonna do, make your yes mean yes, your no mean no, and nothing in between.
W&E: How would you describe your personal style?
Johnson: I’m pretty old-school. I dress the exact same way for a team roping, cutting competition, church, dinner with my wife, or being on stage. I’ve never really tried to follow anybody else’s trend. What’s the old song? “I was country when country wasn’t cool”? A classic outfit for me is a plain-old Wrangler pearl-snap work shirt, a pair of Wrangler 20X jeans, a Resistol hat, and a buckle on.
I’m pretty old-school. I dress the exact same way for a team roping, cutting competition, church, dinner with my wife, or being on stage.
W&E: How do you juggle being a husband, father, musician, and brand ambassador?
Johnson: It is very hard to juggle, but I feel like when you are comfortable enough with yourself to give your whole self to a product, your family, your wife, your band, it makes it a lot easier. When I’m out here on the road, I give 110 percent to every single person that works for me and every single person that pays for a ticket. When I’m at home, I give 110 percent to my wife and kids, and I shut off work and I pay attention to them. I don’t let one bleed over into the other.
W&E: What does a day in the life of Cody Johnson look like?
Johnson: It varies every single day. It could be saddling and unsaddling horses for team roping; chopping wood, getting ready for the fall; cutting brush on my tractor or working on my land; at home being lazy on the couch and spending time with my wife and kids — fishing, taking my wife on dates, church; and then some days, like today, I’ve been up all morning on the phone doing business and I’m about to go work out, do sound check, and play three shows.
W&E: What’s next for you?
Johnson: We have a new album coming out in October called Human; we’ll be releasing one or two songs every month until then. A documentary about my life called Dear Rodeo is coming out in August (a follow-up to our single “Dear Rodeo”). We’re also going in this year to cut a Christmas album, so lots of things happening. We may or may not (hint, hint) have a women’s CoJo cologne fragrance coming out just in time for Christmas.
From the June 2021 issue of W&E Today, the ultimate resource for Western retailers from the editors of Cowboys & Indians.
Photography: (All images) Cameron Powell/Courtesy Drango Artist Management