25-Song Set Marks 25 Years In Country Music Featuring Blake Shelton, Melissa Etheridge, Snoop Dogg, Stevie Wonder on Harmonica and More
“Where the Country Girls At (feat. Luke Bryan & Pitbull)” Out Now
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Country star Trace Adkins is celebrating the release of a milestone recording project today (8/27), dropping his highly-anticipated and bold-as-ever 13th studio album, THE WAY I WANNA GO. Arriving on Verge Records and distributed by global music giant ONErpm, these 25 new songs recognize the star’s 25 years in Country music. THE WAY I WANNA GO touches on all the aspects of Adkins’ storied career – from deeply profound ballads to clever-Country party anthems, all steeped in the diverse sound of his Louisiana upbringing. In addition, the Target exclusive version of the album includes two bonus tracks, “Maintenance Man” and “Home Is You.” Available in stores and online here.
The Grand Ole Opry member has 11 MILLION albums sold, more than TWO BILLION streams and over 20 charted singles to his credit already. But these days, Adkins finds himself at a new creative peak.
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“This album is not only representative of 25 years since the release of my first album DREAMIN’ OUT LOUD, but also a creative high point for me,” says Adkins. “The songs, the production, and the collaborations with iconic artists make this very special for me. I am humbled and grateful to my fans, for they have allowed me to stick around long enough to record this album.”
Produced by Mickey Jack Cones and Derek George, THE WAY I WANNA GO is filled with smooth baritone vocals and Adkins’ signature Country charisma, but that’s not all. Also speaking to his well-established independent spirit, the set features all-star collaborations with Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan and Pitbull, Melissa Etheridge, Keb’ Mo’, Snoop Dogg, plus Stevie Wonder on harmonica with fans and critics already reacting.
Outlets like Billboard, People and Music Row are lauding the epic double album with in-depth features on the project, while Grammy.com praises THE WAY I WANNA GO for presenting “Adkins’ signature, deep baritone at its finest.” It’s a testament to a one-of-a-kind vocalist who’s still at the top of his game.
“It’s such a privilege to work with an artist like Trace—a Country music icon. He’s comfortable and confident in who he is musically and driven by a passion for perfection that is unparalleled,” Mickey Jack Cones says. “In recent interviews,” he adds, “Trace has emphatically proclaimed that this is his favorite album he’s ever recorded. That statement alone speaks volumes to me, not only as the label head, but as a co-producer on the project who’s worked with Trace for over 15 years.”
The project’s rowdy first single, “Where The Country Girls At (feat. Luke Bryan & Pitbull),” is out now. And last week Adkins performed “Got It Down” on NBC’s TODAY – a track personifying the grit and determination he’s carried since 1996’s PLATINUM-certified debut, DREAMIN’ OUT LOUD.
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“It’s just a fun song, and I like what it says,” Adkins shares of the tune, co-written by Craig Wiseman with Brandon Kinney. “It does reflect how I feel, since this is a reflective period in my career, looking back on 25 years. I’ve just never given up, even when times were tough and it looked bleak, I just don’t give up. So, when it comes to never giving up, I got it down.”
Other early-release standouts include “Empty Chair” and “Heartbreak Song,” and on Wednesday night’s (8/25) 14th annual ACM Honors, the larger-than-life star presented the prestigious Merle Haggard Spirit Award to friend and fellow Country music icon, Toby Keith, followed by a surprise performance of Keith’s classic “Love Me If You Can.” Adkins is currently on the road with longtime friend and collaborator Blake Shelton, appearing on select dates of the FRIENDS & HEROES 2021 Tour, and has additional headlining dates scheduled into 2022.