The Johnnys

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The Johnnys
Origin Australia
Genres pub rock, country, punk
Years active 1982–1989, 2004
Labels Regular, Mushroom, Festival, Urbane
Associated acts Hoodoo Gurus, Allniters, Ross Wilson
Past members Roddy Ray'da
Graham Hood
Billy Pommer
Spencer P. Jones
Michael Armiger
Paul Doherty

The Johnnys were an Australian pub rock band from Sydney in 1982–1989 that combined country and punk musical styles. Members included founder, Roddy Ray'da (aka Roddy Radalj) and Spencer P. Jones.


The Johnnys formed in 1982 in Sydney when bass guitarist Graham Hood tried out for the Hoodoo Gurus after quitting the Allniters. He met Hoodoo Gurus' guitarist Roddy Ray'da (aka Roddy Radalj) and they discussed an idea for a side project: playing pub rock in a country music style at a punk pace—which was labelled as cow punk.[1] Ray'da left Hoodoo Gurus and, as a lead vocalist and guitarist with Hood and drummer Billy Pommer Jr, founded The Johnnys.[2] The Johnnys performed its first concert at Palms disco on Oxford St, Taylors Square, Darlinghurst Sydney Australia in November 1982. New Zealand-born Spencer P. Jones joined on guitar and backing vocals.[1] The four-piece released "I Think You're Cute" in October on Regular Records, Ray'da left the group in early 1984 and formed Love Rodeo.[1] Jones took on lead vocals and the band signed with the Green Label to release "My Buzzsaw Baby (Really Cut Me Up)" and an extended play, The Johnnys in November.[1]

In 1985, the band had signed with Mushroom Records which released their single, "Injun Joe" in November. "(There's Gonna Be a) Showdown" followed in March 1986 and then "Bleeding Heart " in June. Their debut album Highlights of Dangerous Life appeared in August and was produced by Ross Wilson of Daddy Cool and contained the three singles.[1] Two non-album singles followed in 1987. Wilson produced their second album, Grown Up Wrong, released in August 1988 which included two further singles, "Motorbikin" (July) and "Anything Could Happen" (November).[1][2] Michael Armiger (ex-Paul Kelly Band) replaced Hood on bass guitar. The band broke up in 1989 with Jones continuing in his side-project Beasts of Bourbon.

According to rock music historian, Ian McFarlane, "Despite being one of the most popular bands on the pub-rock circuit, The Johnnys never crossed over into the premier league".[1] They reformed for shows in 2004.




  • Highlights of a Dangerous Life (1986) – Mushroom
  • "Grown Up Wrong" (1988) – (Mushroom Records)

Track Listing

Side 1

  1. "There's Gonna Be a Showdown"
  2. "The Day Marty Robbins Died"
  3. "Injun Joe"
  4. "Move It"
  5. "The Edge of Death"

Side 2

  1. "Green Back Dollar"
  2. "Bleeding Heart"
  3. "Way of the West"
  4. "Deadmen from Boot Hill"
  5. "Slip Slap Fishin'"
  6. "Mountain Man"
  • Grown Up Wrong (1988) – Mushroom
  • Live at La Dolce Vita (1990) – Urbane


  • "I Think You're Cute/Mountain Man" (1983)
  • "Way of the West" (1984)
  • "Buzzsaw Baby" (1984)
  • "Injun Joe" (1986) No. 32 AU
  • "(There's Gonna Be A) Showdown" (1986) No. 46 AU
  • "Bleeding Heart" (1986) No. 71 AU
  • "Elvisly Yours" (1987)
  • "Don't Put The Blame on Me" (1988)


  1. ^ a b c d e f g McFarlane. Encyclopedia entry for 'The Johnnys'. Retrieved 18 June 2010.
  2. ^ a b Holmgren, Magnus; Georgieff, Didier; Zurek, James; Simonetti, Vince. "The Johnnys". Australian Rock Database. Magnus Holmgren. Archived from the original on 14 May 2011. Retrieved 18 June 2010.