Rascal Flatts have been one of the most important groups in the revival of country music. Garth Brooks may have saved the genre from being forgotten with the passing the Baby Boomers and Faith Hill may have merged twang and the soft hearts of those listening to adult contemporary, but the Flatts energized an entire generation of young musicians and listeners to give country a chance and to feel free to explore mixing and mashing its core principles with the rest of the music stratosphere. Rascal Flatts tickets sell to this day for that very reason and they have sold to the tune of seven million since they became a headliner.
Jay DeMarcus, Gary LeVox, and Joe Don Rooney became international headliners in 2004. The group had just made a lasting impact with a few Top 5 hits from the album Melt and returned to the recording studio to produce Feels Like Today. The album yielded three certifiable hits, “Bless the Broken Road”, “Fast Cars and Freedom”, and “Skin”. The album followed Melt’s lead and went multi-platinum in the United States and platinum in Canada. Thus, the Rascal Flatts finally had more than enough support to embark on headlining gig. The tour, Here’s to You Tour, featured support from some of today’s most influential and popular country musicians, including Blake Shelton and Gary Allen. It would be the first of many headlining gigs and proved that a country singer could take the stage with frosted tips and a manicured facial hair in place of a cowboy hat and a grizzled face.
Now the Rascal Flatts can boast a few more multi-platinum albums, a few more certified singles, a few million-ticket tours, and some responsibility for launching the career of musicians like Jason Aldean, Taylor Swift, and Luke Bryan. They helped to create this golden age of country music and arrival of Nashville as something more than a destination for just those in South.