Johnson attended Jacksonville State University for two years and then left to join the United States Marine Corps Reserve. Throughout his eight years of service, Johnson found solace in creating music that brought him back to his roots. He wrote in his free time and performed for his fellow Marines.
After serving in the Marines, Johnson moved to Montgomery, AL and began playing his captivating music throughout bars in the city. In 2000, Johnson moved to Tennessee to pursue a professional country music career. By 2005, Johnson found his footing in the industry, signed a recording contract with BNA and released his debut album The Dollar just one year later. Johnson went on tour promoting the album but went through strife behind the scenes. During this period, he went through a divorce and was dropped from his label. Because of these hardships, Johnson took a step back from the spotlight and wrote for other known country artists like George Strait, Trace Adkins and Joe Nichols.
After a short hiatus from the forefront of the industry, Johnson signed to Mercury Nashville Records and released his second album That Lonesome Song. This album includes his popular hit songs like “In Color,” which reached number nine on the Billboard Country Chart, and “The High Cost of Living.” The album went gold and earned Johnson multiple nominations at the 2009 Country Music Association Awards and the prestigious honor of Song of the Year for “In Color.” Shortly after this album, Johnson released another album entitled The Guitar Song which was met with praise. It debuted at number one of the Billboard Top Country Albums and sold 63,000 copies in its initial week of release.
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