The story of Sixto Rodriguez’s late bloom to fame has made him an indie-scene darling. In 1970, the Detroit-dwelling folk singer recorded Cold Fact. The record’s songs relayed the inequities facing inner-city poor.
The album did mediocre and his label dropped him. Rodriguez returned to obscurity. He once ran for Detroit city council. His name was misspelled on the ballot.
Meanwhile, in South Africa, unbeknownst to the Michigan musician, Rodriguez’s popularity reached cult status. Rumors that he was dead by his own hand were part of his myth.
In the past decade, America has re-discovered Rodriguez. There’s been a documentary about his life, a re-release of his albums from the 1970s, and spots on shows like “Late Show with David Letterman.”
Rodriguez will perform his trippy-tinged music to a sold-out show at the Wexner Center today. There is a wait-list for extra $18 spots in the audience on the Wexner website. Don’t fret. If Rodriguez has taught us anything, it’s that good things are worth waiting for.