By Russ Pankonin
The Imperial Republican
Anticipation toward the 2010 version of the Chase County Fair & Expo begins to build with the announcement of this year’s grandstand entertainment.
Like always, the Chase County Fairboard has put together another great combination of country and rock performers for this year’s fair, slated for Aug. 15-22, 2010.
The Friday rock show will feature Creedence Clearwater Revisited and the Kahuna Party Band. The Saturday country show will feature country great Rodney Atkins.
Revisited, Friday, Aug. 20
The rock event will be held Friday, Aug. 20, at 7:30 p.m. and will feature Creedence Clearwater Revisited playing many of the all time great hits by Creedence Clearwater Revival.
Formed in 1995 by former CCR members Stu Cook and Doug “Cosmo” Clifford, the Credence Clearwater Revisited band took on a life of its own.
The band was formed to once again perform live Creedence Clearwater Revival hits— touchstones of a generation. Though the pair initially only planned to play private parties, Creedence Clearwater Revisited now performs up to 100 shows a year.
They released the double CD, “Recollection,” recorded live during one of their shows. The CD features authoritative versions of 22 classic hits of the original band. It went platinum in 2008.
After Creedence Clearwater Revival disbanded in 1972 with 16 top 40 hits, Cook and Clifford remained close. After separate music stints, the two realized they both missed playing live Creedence music that had been lying dormant.
Former ex-bandmate John Fogerty had called for a boycott of and refused to publicly perform Creedence Clearwater Revival music.
So, the pair decided to put together their own band to perform the songs in concert.
Since then, Revisited has been playing classics like “Susie Q,” “Lodi,” “Proud Mary,” “Down On The Corner,” “Fortunate Son,” “Who’ll Stop The Rain,” “Midnight Special” and many more of the original band’s classic hits.
To keep the rock experience going that night, the fairboard has booked the band, Kahuna Beach Party, to follow CCR.
The band brings a musical celebration of the Beach Boys to the stage, featuring a light-hearted tribute to the fun and optimistic feeling of the early 1960’s.
After a year of rehearsals, Kahuna Beach Party’s public debut was a series of concerts with the Jefferson Symphony Orchestra in Colorado in 2007. They performed with two other symphony orchestras, all to rave reviews.
They continue touring and building a fan base spanning all age groups in the Rocky Mountains, the Southwest and Midwest.
They travel to numerous state and county fairs and other events, performing to audiences numbering from 300 to 30,000. Their mission is to provide a fun entertainment experience for their audiences.
Saturday, Aug. 21
With the rock event getting crowds going Friday night, the Chase County Fair will follow up Saturday night with another great country show featuring artist Rodney Atkins.
Atkins made a splash on the country scene in 2006 with not one No. 1 hit but four from his platinum album, “If You’re Going Through Hell.”
No one had accomplished that feat since 2002.
The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard country albums chart and the title track spent four weeks atop Billboard’s country singles chart.
“Watching You,” from the same album, spent two weeks atop the charts.
That success earned him the Academy of Country Music’s Top New Male Vocalist award, plus five other ACM nominations and two Country Music Association nominations.
That’s why Atkins has become a favorite with concert audiences all over the country.
The adopted son of a loving family and the proud father to a family of his own, Atkins understands regular lives because he still leads one.
“People always talk about image—‘You’re the guy in the ball cap, the All-American country boy,’” says Atkins, who does indeed still favor caps to cowboy hats. “But if the songs don’t connect with the folks listening, then none of that stuff matters.”
Atkins made the connection again and again on his 2008 album, “It’s America.”
Credit Atkins’ honest view to his upbringing. He was adopted as a frail, sickly infant from the Holston Methodist Home for Children in Greenville, Tenn., but two families returned him to the home because the burden of caring for him was too great.
Then Allan and Margaret Atkins took him in. “From what I understand, I became more sick than I had ever been during that time,” he says. “But it just never crossed their mind to take me back.”
With their love and care that weak, ill child grew into a strong, healthy young man.
He began singing in church as a boy, and learned to play guitar and write songs while in high school.
Soon after he headed off to college, Atkins began making regular trips to Nashville in order to write, perform and learn the business.
Word got around quickly about this talented and charismatic up-and-comer, and soon he was signed to Curb Records. Atkins’ 2003 debut album, Honesty, earned him a Top 5 hit with “Honesty (Write Me a List).”
Never one to stray far from his roots, Atkins, along with his wife of 10 years, Tammy Jo, continue to raise their family (and enjoy a simple life) in Middle Tennessee. “My family is my priority,” he says. “I cherish them so much.”
He’s toured with the superstar likes of Brad Paisley, Brooks & Dunn, Martina McBride and ZZ Top. Similarly, he’s had the pleasure of helping the causes that mean a lot to him, such as the National Council for Adoption.
He said he feels an unbreakable connection to the fans who buy his albums, request his songs and fill up his shows.
“Sometimes it is the simple things in this great country that really make me appreciate it. When we share this sense of pride through music, you become friends with everybody listening. It’s an honor to go out there and represent the everyday man, and to represent country music and what it’s all about,” he added.
Tickets for both shows go on sale in late June. For more fair information, see the website at www.chasecountyfair.com.