Exclusive Interview with Acklen Park

Acklen Park Why country music ?
~ ANDREA: Country music is honest and real. The songs tell stories of true life and of dreams. So it's a great way to reflect on your life and also fantasize about the things you desire.
~ MARCUM: I couldn't agree with Andrea any more. Country Music is simply put "GENUINE".... sung and written by Genuine Honest Folk. It is real music.

If everything would be possible (waking the dead included) , which two people should sing the ultimate country duet?
~ ANDREA: Patsy Cline and Vince Gill :)
~ MARCUM: I love Faith Hill when it comes to duet partners, however we are talking about the ULTIMATE Country Duet..... so with that in mind then I agree with Patsy Cline and will go with either Hank Williams (senior) or Garth Brooks. I think Garth & Patsy would blend better, however Hank was such a huge part of why Country Music is Country music. Hard to go against a man so inspirational.

What song you ever recorded means the most to you and why?
~ ANDREA: Feels Like Love - It's honest and relatable. We've all experienced relationships that we knew were bad for us, but we just couldn't let go.
~ MARCUM: This is tough because "every" song means a lot to me. I don't record songs unless they truly mean something to me personally. Songs are like children, they are my babies, so cherish each one of them the same way. I can say this though, "Feels Like Love" is the first song that me and Andrea wrote together and I can't wait for the rest of the world to hear the final copy in a couple months ;)

Who would you like to write a song for you?
~ ANDREA: Brad Paisley - His songs have a certain humor about them, and I'd be curious of what he would say about me. Maybe I'm so much cooler online? :)
~ MARCUM: Garth Brooks, Skip Ewing, Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Peach Pickers (songwriting trio comprised of Rhett Akins, Ben Hayslip & Dallas Davidson) or Hilary Lindsey & Brett James. I can't just pick one writer, there are too many in this town to choose from ;)

Whisky wine beer or water?
~ ANDREA: Oooo tricky...wine. Moscato, to be exact.
~ MARCUM: Whiskey for me.... Grateful Dead to be exact.

If you could turn back time to make only one change, what would you change?
~ ANDREA: I would have moved to Nashville much sooner and started on this journey way back when. I'm having the time of my life!
~ MARCUM: I am a firm believer that EVERYTHING happens for a reason! There would be no point to look back at the past for me. Are there things I would change about my life, sure, don't we all have that. But I also believe that God puts us on a path to travel that we have to do our best to follow his lead. So I believe that me and Andrea are exactly where we are supposed to be at this particular moment in time. I wouldn't ask for anything different. ;)

What is the question interviewers never seem to ask you and...you wish they would? (Please provide your answer as well.)
~ ANDREA: No one ever asks me if I have any pets! And I love to talk about my Dixie and Romeo:) Dixie is a weiner doggie and total sweetheart, and Romeo is the funniest little tabby cat I've ever seen.
~ MARCUM: HA, no one ever asks if we play any sports or have played in the past. It's always music related or if Me and Andrea are romantic with one another, LOL. However, if it were the sports question then I'd be able to talk about the time I played Tennis semi-professionally for the Volvo team, had a career record of 45-5, had a world ranking & almost turned PRO to go out on the Tour Circuit the same year Malavai Washington did. Unfortunately, I had a career ending injury and Malavai won Wimbeldon 3 years later.

Describe the ultimate recording studio (not the technique but the facilities)
~ ANDREA: The perfect studio would be equiped with Starbuck's coffee and Crystal Light with Snuggies for everyone. I get cold easily...
~ MARCUM: We have pretty cozy studio now at Benchmark Sound.... but I agree with Andrea, a Starbucks would be super sweet, maybe a Big Screen TV to watch with Headphones attached to the Chairs or Couch so we can hear the TV without interrupting the Producer/Engineer while he or she is tweaking sounds, a Ping Pong Table or Air Hockey table would be cool too. But then again, we may end up playing more than actually working if that was the case.

Johnny or June ?
~ ANDREA: June, because she stood by her man through some very tough times. She is a true testament of love.
~ MARCUM: Gotta stick with us guys, Mr. Cash. Johnny was just too darn cool!

Give us your top 3 country songs ever.
~ ANDREA: Ugh, tough question.
1. Stand By Your man - Tammy Wynette
2. Jolene - Dolly Parton
3. Rain - Patty Griffin

~ MARCUM: Wow, very tough! Not sure if I can answer this; I'm gonna leave some out I'm sure
1. Every Now and Then - Garth Brooks (love love love this song!)
2. Coast Of Colorado - Skip Ewing
3. Only A Dream - Mary Chapin Carpenter (still gives me chills to this day) or New York (Hold Her Tight) - Restless Heart (toss up between those two)

What was the most memorable day in your musical career and tell us why.
~ ANDREA: We had the privilege of playing for a biker Sunday church service in Clarksville, TN, on a huge outdoor stage in front of a great crowd. I saw people become saved and truely felt God's presence that day.
~ MARCUM: To me it was the day I got to do a writers showcase for Homeless Veterans her in Nashville at the Boardwalk Cafe. What made it so memorable for me was the fact that I go to share the stage with one of my all time songwriting idols, Skip Ewing, that day. I even handed him the sharpie to sign the guitar right after I signed it. He signed right below me. That was just too cool and I wish I had a cell phone that took pictures back then in order to capture that moment HA That was in the 90's though.

Acklen Park

Photos by: Melody Hood of Innamorata Photography

Answers given on October 30, 2011