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"Changed," and changes, are good for Rascal Flatts

@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013

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"Changed" was not the first single from Rascal Flatts' 2012 album of the same name. But guitarist Joe Don Rooney says it's the "perfect" song to both encapsulate the project and the country trio's current state of affairs.

"It's the perfect title for a song at the right time for us," Rooney, 37, says of "Changed," which was co-written by the group's Gary LeVox and co-produced by the band with Dann Huff. "We've been through a lot of changes during the history of the band -- us becoming the men we are today, becoming the husbands and fathers we are today and having a career in this crazy music business.

"We've learned so much along the way and gone through so many experiences we've been fortunate to have, and then taking all that and throwing into the ('Changed') album, basically. I think (the song) takes that all into account, which is why it was so perfect."

"Changed" is Rascal Flatts' seventh consecutive No. 1 country album and will be followed by a new set that's due this fall. The group also filmed an episode of CMT's "Crossroads" with Journey at this year's Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans, and Rooney says straddling the country and pop line is natural for the group.

"We've got a little bit of a rock/pop/country sound. Always have," Rooney acknowledges. I don't think there's anything wrong wtih that. A lot of people do in country. We all had siblings who went to 70s and 80s rock, and we love it.

"But I'll tell you this; we have always loved traditional country music i ways you can never imagine. Back when we got our start, that's all we were doing -- a little old-time rock 'n' roll, maybe, but a lot of hard-core country stuff like Waylon (Jennings), Merle Haggard, George Jones stuff. That's what our parents passed on to us.

"So I think Rascal Flatts is a variety of things, and we love it all. We really do."

Rascal Flatts, the Band Perry and Cassadee Pope perform at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 27, at the DTE Energy Music Theatre, Sashabaw Road east of I-75, Independence Township. Tickets are $79.50 and $59.50 pavilion, $29.75 lawn. Call 248-377-0100 or visit www.palacenet.com.

Web Site: www.palacenet.com

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