Celebrity Birthdays, July 31: Rico Rodriguez and Zac Brown

By Marie Blake,

Actor Rico Rodriguez and musician Zac Brown are celebrating their birthdays today.

Rico Rodriguez, 16


Image courtesy of Jennifer Graylock/INFphoto.com

Actor Rico Rodriguez turns 16 today. Rodriguez was born in Bryan, Texas. His siblings are brothers Ray and Roy, Jr. and sister Raini Rodriguez, who is also an actress herself, and stars on Disney's Austin & Ally. He is of Mexican American descent. Rodriguez had not considered becoming an actor until his sister began acting in 2006.

In September 2009, Rodriguez earned the role of Manny Delgado in the ABC hit comedy series Modern Family. Rodriguez, as well as the cast of Modern Family, were winners of the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series in 2011 and 2012, and received a nomination for the same award in 2010.

Rodriguez has published a book titled Reel Life Lessons...So Far that was released in 2012.

Zac Brown, 36


Image courtesy of INFevents.com

Guitarist and singer Zac Brown turns 36 today. Brown learned to play classical guitar at the age of 7. As a teenager, he played solo gigs in local venues, performing country and pop cover songs. By the age of 18, he began touring the Southeast with a drummer and his dog. Nine years later, he formed the Zac Brown Band, which consisted of Brown on acoustic guitar and lead vocals, backed by a drummer and a bass guitarist.

In 2004, Brown opened a music club and restaurant with his father called "Zac's Place." A developer bought the restaurant and, in turn, the Zac Brown Band bought a tour bus and began touring full-time, playing rock and country clubs as well as folk and jam band festivals. 2004 also saw the release of the Zac Brown Band's first independent album, Home Grown. That same year, Brown added violinist/fiddler and tenor vocalist Jimmy De Martini to the Zac Brown Band lineup. John Driskell Hopkins stepped up as bass guitarist and, in 2008, they released their first major labeled studio album, The Foundation.

The Zac Brown Band currently consists of Zac Brown as lead vocals and guitar, Jimmy De Martini on fiddle and vocals, John Driskell Hopkins on bass guitar, banjo, ukulele, upright bass and vocals, Coy Bowles on guitar and keyboards, Chris Fryar on drums, Clay Cook on guitar, keyboards, mandolin, steel guitar and vocals, Matt Mangano on bass guitar and Daniel de los Reyes on percussion.

Since 2009, the Zac Brown Band has earned 55 award nominations from the Grammys, Academy of Country Music, American Music Awards, Country Music Association and Country Music Television, and has won 8, including Best Country Album at the 2013 Grammy Awards.

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