Happy Birthday John Rich: The Big & Rich Star Turns 47

by Kayla Zadel

It’s going to be a Rich day for one-half of the country duo, Big & Rich. John Rich is celebrating his 47th birthday.

In honor of John Rich’s birthday, were taking a look back at where it all started for this country music star and entrepreneur.

John Rich is a Texan

The 47-year-old was born in Amarillo, Texas to a preacher’s father. His humble upbringing taught him to work hard. Rich always had the itch to pursue his dreams of country music and he moved to Nashville to do just that.

Not long after he met up with the group that’s now known as Lonestar. Rich was a member of the group from 1992 to 1998. he played bass guitar and alternated as lead vocalist. His lead vocals can be heard on “Heartbroke Every Day.” Additionally, Rich co-wrote two of the band’s singles “Come Cryin’ to Me” and “Say When.”

The mullet-sporting Rich is in the video for “No News” playing bass and singing backup vocals.

Rich parted ways with the band after some turmoil in the late ’90s. He then sought a solo career. Rich released an album,  Underneath the Same Moon, with BNA Records. This is when he met William Alphin, also known as Big Kenny. He was pursuing a solo career as well, but when his first album flopped like Rich’s, the two decided to form Big & Rich.

Big & Rich Becomes Legendary

The two formed the eccentric country duo in 2002 and recorded three albums during the years 2004 and 2007. Big & Rich were the first of their kind in the country music industry, and they took it by storm.

The albums Horse of a Different ColorComin’ to Your City and Between Raising Hell and Amazing Grace produced ten singles for Rich and Big Kenny.

Horse of a Different Color produced four straight Top 40 country hits, including the number 11 “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy).”

Additional hits from these albums are “Lost in This Moment” and “8th of November.”

A fourth Big & Rich studio album was released in the summer of 2012, with the inspiring “That’s Why I Pray” reaching No. 15 on the country charts.

He calls himself the “Cowboy Stevie Wonder” and it’s even written on his guitar. Rich is also known for having messages written on the backside of his instrument and he will often turn it over when he’s playing live in concert for fans to see.

Other Rich Endeavours

Not only is John Rich a successful singer, but he’s written many songs that have gone on to be hits. Songs like “Redneck Women” for Gretchen Wilson, “Mississippi Girl” for Faith Hill, and “Why” for Jason Aldean are a few notables. Plus Rich has even co-written on Taylor Swift’s album, Fearless.

Rich has also produced songs for Gretchen Wilson, Keith Anderson, Jewel, and John Anderson.

Rich also appeared on “Celebrity Apprentice” in 2011. He eventually went on to win the competition. Furthermore, Rich, Big Kenny and crew filmed the opening for ESPN’s “College Gameday.”

John Rich is the Sauce Boss

Rich is an entrepreneur through and through. The work ethic he learned from his late “Granny Rich” has spawned many Rich endeavors.

John has opened two bars named Redneck Riviera, one in Nashville and the other in Las Vegas. He often makes unannounced appearances at the Nashville location.

In addition to the “Work Hard, Play Hard Bar & BBQ” projects, Rich also has a line of whiskey called Redneck Riviera Whiskey.

He also just debuted a collection of barbecue sauces named 1776. According to Outsider’s Josh Lanier, “Rich promised that the sauces are made in America and would support American workers.”

Also his name really is John Rich. Trust us, we checked.