Country star Rodney Atkins is lending his voice to a great cause, joining Miley Cyrus, Terrence Howard, Gabrielle Union and others to recognize local community heroes at this month’s first-ever American Giving Awards. Speaking exclusively with Celebrity Baby Scoop, the ‘Take a Back Road’ singer, who is dad to son Elijah and stepdad to girls Lindsey and Morgan, reflects on some of his favorite family moments and talks about the importance of giving back.
CBS: Can you give us some background on the American Giving Awards, Presented by Chase? We hear you’ll be performing! Why did you choose to become involved?
RA: “I am excited about it. One of the greatest things about this country is people helping people out. When we got the call that they would like me to be on the show we jumped at the chance to be involved in a big way with so many people and great organizations that are giving back and truly making a difference. The AGAs are the first ever celebrity tribute to local heroes where everyday Americans decide who wins the $1 million. It’s not too late to vote, check out the Chase Community Giving Facebook page to pick your favorite charity from the final 5.”
CBS: Are you active in any of the charities being recognized?
RA: “I have not been involved with the charities being recognized this year, but have worked hard to use whatever I can to help many charities. I have generally tried to focus my energies on Adoption/ Foster Care causes and helping the troops protecting us all. It doesn’t matter what the cause is though. It is important for people to find something they are passionate about and to give, their time, their energy, their money, anything. Just give back!”
CBS: You were born and raised in Tennessee; did growing up there inspire your country music career?
RA: “Absolutely. Growing up in east Tennessee is a big part of my music. The songs I sing all are rooted in being raised the way I was raised and where i was raised. To me I try to sing songs that reflect real life (or at least my version of it).”
CBS: Out of all your songs, including your latest, ‘Take a Back Road,’ do you have a favorite or one that has special meaning? If so, why?
RA: “I think that is like asking which is your favorite kid. It all depends on the day and how they are acting.”
CBS: How has parenting affected your career? Do you find inspiration from your kids?
RA: “Parenting has definitely affected my career. It changes the way you see the world. I find inspiration from being a father in everything I do. From the songs I record, to decisions made as far as when to tour and what things to do. It is really about trying to find balance in everything. Sometimes I do a better job than others.”
CBS: What are some of your favorite fatherhood moments or memories?
RA: “There are so many of them. I was such a baseball nut growing up, and now my son has picked it up. We went to the MLB Allstar game this summer. Watching the game that I grew up loving through his life is amazing.”
CBS: What’s up next for you?
RA: “Playing a lot of shows and keeping at it making music.”
Rodney will be performing at the American Giving Awards, which will air on NBC on December 10. You can cast a vote for the charity you’d like to see win the $1 million grand prize at the Chase Community Giving Facebook page.