Rodney Atkins had delivered a world-class release with Honesty back in 2003, but even then he was searching for something that would bring his music home to his heart and his memory and his love for the people and the values that guide his life.
That’s what makes his new project different. The voice is still there, deep and strong, a little rough to the touch, like a fence in a field, but also tender and simmering with quiet feeling. It’s a voice that’s lived a bit since we last heard it. That difference can be heard on the new album’s first single, “If You’re Going Through Hell (Before The Devil Even Knows)”.
“When I heard the single, I loved it. It makes a powerful statement. But I had to think, ‘Okay, would I sing this song?’” This question led to songs that meet the same musical standards as the ones set by Honesty and yet come even closer to the kind of man Rodney has always been.
As if to tighten the ties that bind this music to his world, he built a simple studio at home, where he laid down all the vocals between doing chores and spending time with his family. “This could be the most inexpensive record Curb has ever done,” he says, “because there was no engineer and no studio clock ticking away. I’d just go in whenever I felt like singing and it made the process for me that much better.”
Rodney understands that country music, the way it ought to be played, isn’t just about life – it is life. “It’s about what people face every day. That’s what they want to hear in country music. And that’s what I draw on, what brought me here, every time I sing.”