Jamey Johnson gives golfers chance to see sold out show

As a native son of Montgomery - along with being an amazing country singer and songwriter - it should be no surprise that Jamey Johnson's 8 p.m. show Friday at Wind Creek Wetumpka sold out pretty quickly.

For those who got tickets early, congratulations.

For the rest of us, there’s still hope to get in… if you’ve got a good golf game.

Johnson's songs include greats like "In Color," "Macon," "My Way to You," "High Cost of Living" and many more, His 2008 album "That Lonesome Song" went platinum, and "The Guitar Song" went gold. He's a Grammy-nominated artist who is also know for co-writing hits for country's superstars, like “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk" for Trace Adkins back in 2005 and the 2007 award-winning hit "Give it Away" for George Strait. He recently co-wrote the title track of Willie Nelson's new album "God's Problem Child."

“It’s always great working with Willie," said Johnson. "He’s a mentor. He’s a friend. A great example of what young artists should aspire to be when we all grow up.  At 84 years old, he’s still playing. He’s still traveling. Still bringing the music to the people. He’ll never retire. He’s a national monument. A living and breathing and touring national monument.”Cottonwood Golf Course, which Johnson co-owns at 7160 Byron Nelson Blvd., Montgomery, is hosting a Down-Home Dozen Spring Scramble on Friday at 2 p.m. with a dozen four man teams. The cost is $400 per team, and as of Monday there are a limited number of spots still available.

"It’s just nine holes so that it doesn’t take everybody out of a whole day of work,” said Johnson.

The first place team gets 8 backstage passes, which includes side-stage standing room access. The second place team gets four backstage passes. Third-place team members each get $50 in golf shop credit (total $200).

Johnson said there going to be some post-game music on site at the golf course. "Everybody that comes is going to get to hear some music from one of my friends in Georgia. His name is Drew Ellis. Great musician,” said Johnson. "He’ll be playing out at the course when everybody gets done."

For information about registering for the scramble, visit cottonwoodgolfclub.com or call Jonathan Leyendecker at 956-206-1889.

"Good things are happening at Cottonwood. We’re rebuilding some of the bunkers. The greens look perfect, as usual,” said Johnson. "Before he passed away, that was one of the crowning achievements of the late John Bell. He did a fantastic job of refurbishing that golf course in terms of the greens and the fairways, and took really good care of that place. We’re trying to continue the good work he did out there.”

Of course, Johnson knows not all his fans are golfers. He’s truly looking forward to seeing his fans at Wind Creek Wetumpka Friday night. For all the hometown fans who couldn’t make it:

“Just tell them I love them,” said Johnson. "If they weren’t able to get tickets to this show, don’t worry. I’m always coming back. There will be another show down the road. In fact, we’ll do one in October, and who knows? After that, we may book another shortly after.”

Johnson, who just finished an eight-city Stagecoach Spotlight Tour with Margo Price and Brent Cobb, as well as a being part of a "superband" at the Saenger Theatre in in New Orleans,  took some time to talk about some of his other projects, along with what it’s like to work in the industry.

Homecoming concert in October

In October, Johnson will be back in Montgomery for the sixth-annual Homecoming Golf Tournament to benefit Toys for Tots and the Nikki Mitchell Foundation, which supports research for early detection and a cure for pancreatic cancer. Johnson is one of the founding members of the foundation.

"This will be our sixth annual this year. It’ll be Oct. 1,” said Johnson. "We will typically do a dinner that Friday night for the people who get there early. Past couple of years, that’s been a catfish fry. Saturday, we’ll have a practice round so people can familiarize themselves with the course. And then the tournament will be Sunday, and the post-game concert will be Sunday night. The golf tournament usually sells out to our top sponsors, but the concert is for everybody in Montgomery. That’s open to the public. Generally, we will accept toys for Toys for Tots. That goes to my local Marine Corps reserve unit on Federal Drive. We let them divey out the toys to the kids in the Montgomery area. That’s something that’s really been close to my heart ever since the first time I went around delivering those toys in a set of dress blues myself."

Co-writing title track for Willie Nelson’s new album

"Tony Joe White and I got together one day and we were telling some stories from the road trying to find some inspiration for a song. It didn’t seem like anything was coming to us. Went to lunch and I got some great catfish at this local place in Franklin, Tennessee…. Came back and we were just about to call it a day. It didn’t seem like the inspiration was hitting, and I remember this turn of a phrase I had written down. Something that came to me in my travels, ‘God’s problem child.’ How funny it was to think about those words in that way, and how many people does that really describe. Ultimately, I think it describes mankind as a whole. As much as God has a child, he definitely has a problem child. So we sat down and we wrote this song. Like I always do, anytime that I write something that I really like, I’ll send it to two artists. I’ll send it to Willie and I’ll send it to George Strait. Willie was the first one who called me back on it… I was really proud that he thought enough of it to make it the title track of his new album. To be quite honest, I think the song, the phrase describes Willie Nelson to a ’T’. I think it works really well for him.”

Changing sound of country

"I guess you can blame it on the Internet, if there’s any blame to be passed around at all, for the lines blurring between the genres. It’s not just country music that has changed. It’s every format. Formats existed back when the radio stations needed to have parameters so people would know how to identify. They also existed because record companies needed to know what part of the store to put your record in when it came out for sale. Are you going to be R&B? Are you going to be blues? Jazz? Fusion? Funk? Rock & roll?  Pop? Country? All of these classifications created themselves in that era. The Internet made every one of those classifications obsolete, because it doesn’t apply to this generation. People get their music all kinds of different ways, not even just by the Internet. That’s why you have bands coming out that don’t seem to have any one particular identity. That’s not just country music. You have to look across the board and realize, man, some of the bands today are playing all kinds of different music. You have to embrace it. It’s not a bad thing."

From the Montgomery Advertiser