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Rodney Atkins gets the VIP treatment from President Bush

Thursday, November 22, 2007 – Rodney Atkins got the VIP treatment when he went to Washington last week. Not only did he perform in front of a gathering celebrating adoption, Atkins received a VIP tour of the White House, bowled in the president's bowling alley, while his son plumped himself down in the president's lap.

Atkins flew to Washington Nov. 16 for a special performance in the White House East Room in honor of National Adoption Month.

In his role as spokesman for the National Adoption Council, Atkins was invited to perform for President Bush, the First Lady, several members of Congress and a room full of adopted children and their families.

Joined by his wife Tammy, son Elijah and his parents Allan and Margaret, Atkins performed for the invitation only crowd and shared his own heartwarming story of adoption. The President enjoyed two of Atkins' hits and asked for a third. While performing "If Your Going Through Hell," son Elijah climbed up in the president's lap.

Prior to the show, Atkins and his family were treated to a special "behind-the-scenes" tour of the inner workings of the White House. In addition to the private movie theater; the group was shown the flower room, the chocolate room, where they saw a white chocolate replica of the White House in progress and the kitchen.

At lunch, the kitchen staff treated Elijah with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, cut in triangles. Atkins was also made friends with Presidential Pups Beasley and Barney. The highlight of the tour was a single lane bowling alley, where father and son enjoyed a few throws of the "first" bowling ball.

"It was an unbelievable experience. President Bush and his wife Laura made me and my family feel at home. What a thrill to see all the history that surrounded us," Atkins proclaimed. "My dad kept nudging me in arm and saying, 'Can you believe this, ain't this something.' I was so honored to be there."

"It was funny, the first thing I said on stage was 'Howdy y'all.' Then I said, 'I can't believe I just said y'all in the White House, but I'm sure it's not the first time y'all has been said here.' President Bush said 'No, it's definitely not.' I just hope I represented respectfully country music and my family. It was a thrill I'll never forget. We even put the picture of President Bush with Elijah on the first page of my website. What an experience."

Atkins was recently named the National Celebrity Spokesperson of the Year by the National Council For Adoption (NCFA), a leading adoption advocacy organization.

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Take a Back Road CD review - Take a Back Road
Rodney Atkins' breakthrough album, "If You're Going Through Hell," produced the top singles of both 2006 and 2007. His moment in the spotlight was brief, with his follow-up album,"It's America," being largely ignored except for the title track. From the get go on "Take a Back Road," Atkins comes across as a regular guy, not a detached superstar. There are songs about hanging out on back roads away from the hustle of daily life, getting fatherly »»»
It's America CD review - It's America
When you've recorded Billboard's number 1 country song of 2006 (If You're Going Through Hell) and 2007 (Watching You), what do you do for an encore? Rodney Atkins is here to tell us: you don't mess with the recipe. As usual, the hook-seeking guitar licks lead the pop country charge, with the occasional appearance of fiddles and banjos for seasoning. Atkins tapped into the services of an army of writers for the 11 songs, including 3 he helped write. »»»
If You're Going Through Hell CD review - If You're Going Through Hell
You know, kids, believe it or not, back in the day, country singers didn't have to sing about how country they were. When they opened their mouths and sang - even if they were singing about being chairman of General Motors and living in the big city - you knew it was a country song. But nowadays when country and pop rock are all but indistinguishable, artists have to waste a lot of valuable time establishing their country credibility. Take Rodney Atkins for instance. »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: LSD tour provides a lot of highs – This was not your grandkids' country, that's for sure. Even the name of the tour - the LSD Tour - was a throwback (albeit far before the principals were making music). But make no mistake about it. With the ever cool country traditionalist Dwight Yoakam, the country with some rock and blues and rabble rousing of Steve Earle thrown in and the... »»»
Concert Review: Alvin, Gilmore fortunately get together – Dave Alvin and Jimmie Dale Gilmore had known each other for decades, but it wasn't until last year that they toured together in a guitar pull setting. What started as a small Texas tour mushroomed into points east and west and eventually the release earlier this month of their blues-based disc, "Downey to Lubbock." And now we have the... »»»
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