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Rascal Flatts Release Long-Awaited <i>Feels Like Today</i>

It took Country vocal group Rascal Flatts two years to release its third and latest album Feels Like Today. Some changes in their personal lives and an exhausting tour schedule made it the most difficult album they've made. But, they say it was worth the wait to give their fans a collection that they feel is musically and lyrically the best of their career.

The lyrics in "Then I Did" perfectly describe Rascal Flatts' rise to fame in Country music. But, Rascal Flatts members Jay DeMarcus, Joe Don Rooney and Gary LeVox worked very hard during the past few years to prove their talent.

Early in their career, Country traditionalists criticized the trio for its young, pop-influenced sound. Jay DeMarcus says, "They said we were trying to be Country's answer to The Backstreet Boys or 'N Sync." Fans and Country radio showed their support, however, and Rascal Flatts' 1999 debut album went on to sell a million copies. Sales of the trio's second release, Melt, doubled that number and earned the band the Country Music Association's 2002 Horizon Award. Last year, Rascal Flatts won the CMA's Vocal Group of the Year honor, a category they appear in again this year.

Rascal Flatts gives thanks to their fans in "Here's To You," a track on the new album that was co-written by the group's Jay DeMarcus. Their current tour, which is named after the song, will take the trio to 28 U.S. cities through the end of the year.

Feels Like Today entered Billboard's Country Albums and Top 200 charts at Number One. Rascal Flatts is only the second Country group to achieve that feat. The first was another trio, The Dixie Chicks, who debuted in the top spot of both charts in 1999 with Fly and again in 2002 with their latest album, Home. Rascal Flatts has the fifth highest Country sales debut of 2004 by selling nearly 201,000 copies of Feels Like Today.

Rascal Flatts recently earned its eighth Country Top 10 hit with the album's title track. Only two of the trio's singles have made it all the way to Number One on the Country chart.