Alan Jackson To Headline Sound Speed

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For the third consecutive year, the stars of country music and NASCAR will converge on Music City USA to join Grammy-winning, multi-platinum-selling recording artist Alan Jackson and other top country music performers for Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust on Jan. 11-12, 2008. The announcement was made by executives from Sprint, SunTrust and NASCAR during the Pep Boys Auto 500 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

The third annual Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust celebration will take place in and around Nashville’s (Tenn.) Sommet Center the second weekend in January and will include a concert extravaganza headlined by Jackson on Saturday, Jan. 12, at 8 p.m. CST.

Jackson is one of the most compelling performers/songwriters in country music – a favorite of critics and fans alike. Jackson has sold more than 49 million albums, has penned 21 of his 31 No. 1 records, and is the most nominated artist in Country Music Association (CMA) history. As everyone in Nashville knows, Jackson is an avid car collector with a garage full of classic cars, including his first set of wheels, a 1977 Thunderbird. His 1997 video for “Who's Cheatin' Who” was filmed at the Concord (N.C.) Motorsports Park and featured some of NASCAR’s hottest drivers such as Dale Jarrett, Rusty Wallace, Mark Martin, Brett Bodine, Ernie Irvan, Jeremy Mayfield, Bobby Hillin, Jr., and Bill Elliott. The three-time CMA Entertainer of the Year topped the album charts not once, but twice, in 2006, with the success of Precious Memories and Like Red on a Rose.

Tickets for Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust with headliner Jackson will go on sale Friday, Nov. 9, and will be available through TicketMaster (www.ticketmaster.com) and on the website, www.soundandspeed.org. Tickets are $39.50 for the concert, $20 for the festival, or $54.50 for both.

In addition to the country music concert, the two-day Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust festival will once again give fans of racing and country music the opportunity to get up-close and personal with drivers, team owners and top-name musicians for autographs, story-telling and question-and-answer sessions.

“The Sprint Sound & Speed event is a true celebration, bringing together both music and NASCAR,” said NASCAR President Mike Helton. “I look forward to joining fans who will gather to enjoy many of the stars from our industry working with the likes of Alan Jackson, Josh Turner and Diamond Rio for such a great cause.”

Celebrities already scheduled to participate in autograph and question-answer sessions are country artist and soon-to-be member of the Grand Ole Opry, Josh Turner (Long Black Train sold over a million copies, garnering multiple nominations from the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music. Your Man attained double-platinum status and earned two Grammy® nominations), Diamond Rio (over 10 million albums sold to date, whose hits include “Meet in the Middle,” “Norma Jean Riley,” “Unbelievable” and “One More Day”), Danielle Peck (most-played debut female country artist of 2006, whose hits include “I Don’t,” “Isn’t That Everything,” “Findin’ a Good Man,” and the new single, “Bad for Me,” impacting radio now), Bucky Covington (top-10 finalist on Fox’s American Idol, whose first single, “A Different World,” reached number one on the country Billboard charts) and trio newcomer Lady Antebellum (whose recently released single, “Love Don’t Live Here,” is creating a buzz and high anticipation for their upcoming album due to hit store shelves in March).

Among the NASCAR celebrities already scheduled to appear at the third annual Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust are Richard Petty, Kyle Petty, Darrell Waltrip, Ryan Newman and Jamie McMurray. Joining them from the sports car racing ranks will be Max Angelelli and Wayne Taylor, while more drivers and country music performer appearances will be added to the star-studded line-up weekly.

The blockbuster event will also feature show car and sponsor displays, as well as a charitable auction with memorabilia from the racing and entertainment industries. The first two Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust events drew an estimated 25,000 fans and raised more than $500,000 for its designated charities, which once again include the Victory Junction Gang Camp and the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum.

For more information, visit www.soundandspeed.org.

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