Rodney gives student a concert for one

By: Nick Malawskey
May 30, 2009

For most fourth graders, just meeting a country music star would be an experience of a lifetime.

A 10-year-old from Ferguson Township received an extra bonus Friday morning at the Fox News studios in New York — a concert for one.

After appearing on the morning program “Fox & Friends” to greet country singer Rodney Atkins, Cassie Greenland, 10, from Pennsylvania Furnace, was asked after the show if she would like to hear one of her favorite songs.

Atkins then played for her one of his hit singles, “Watching You,” while Cassie took a front-row seat at the studio.

Atkins and his band also played another of her favorite songs “Cleaning my Gun,” acoustically for Cassie and her family following the show, and signed several autographs.

“He was very nice,” Cassie said later. “Those are two of my favorite songs.”

Cassie and her family were invited to visit the program after she sent a letter in March to Atkins as part of a school assignment.

The letter was addressed to Tennessee Tech University, where Atkins went to college. The college contacted a local newspaper that was able to forward the letter to Atkins.

The story of the letter was posted on the Internet, where Fox News learned about it. The network on Thursday invited Cassie and her family to visit the morning program to surprise Atkins, who was appearing to promote his latest album by performing his new single “15 Minutes.”

At the end of his performance, the hosts brought Cassie onto the stage to meet him. Atkins immediately recognized Cassie as the letter writer from Pennsylvania. Cassie said she admired him “because I want to become a country singer.”

She said she sometimes tries to be like her father, and her father likes Atkins’ music.

“My dad introduced me (to his music) when I was 7 and then I listened to the songs ... and I just kept listening to it and I got really into it,” she said.

Cassie’s father, Chuck Greenland, said meeting Atkins on television was an experience the family would be talking about for some time.

“It was pretty neat,” he said. “We’ll just have to make a scrapbook out of the whole thing.”