Rodney Atkins Strikes a Chord With 'Caught Up in the Country'

Rodney Atkins' latest single, "Caught Up in the Country," is from his upcoming new album. The tune, which he recorded with the renowned Fisk Jubilee Singers, is already striking a chord all over the world.

"To have a song that people relate to, and even people – I say they're friends you just haven't met, that just reminds you that we're all connected," Atkins tells PopCulture.com. "And music, when you're playing a show, and it doesn't matter if you're in Panama City or Idaho or New York or Afghanistan, you get to sing those songs; we often kind of forget where we are, and we're just there. It's magical. I mean, it does it to me now. I love getting to sing it."

"Caught Up in the Country" reminds Atkins of his previous chart-topping hit, "Take a Back Road."

"It's a tune about connecting the sky and the ground and,it's something that just took me somewhere similar to 'Take a Back Road' did, when I heard it," Atkins says. "It's just celebrating being outdoors really. The Fisk Jubilee singers, those crazy kids came in and they clapped and stomped and sang their hearts out, and so far it's doing better than any single I've ever had at this point. It's been so much fun seeing people singing the song live when we go out, and they're clapping in the right spots and singing every word already."

For Atkins, watching fans sing along to his music reminds him of why keeps working so hard.

"I owe the people my career," says the 49-year-old. "Back when we did the first Honesty album, we didn't really have much success with that. But after that, I went out on the road and I tried songs out in the real world. I was actually told at one point, when I was working on the Going Through Hell album, that people didn't want to hear about going through hell, or hear me sing about my four year old saying a four-letter-word."

Atkins quickly learned that his fans have strong opinions, and that experience taught him to listen to those who pay to hear hismusic.

"I went out and played them for real people, that's what's happened on this record," Atkins says. "I've got to sneak these songs in and play them live, and take four-and-a-half years to make a record. And we just went in and recorded the last two songs ... I'm kind of getting a good understanding of what I think the next single should be. I can't say exactly what it is, there's about four songs that are in the running."

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Download "Caught Up in the Country" on iTunes.

Photo Credit: Getty images/Leah Puttkammer