Biography

Over the last few years, Tommy Atkins has cemented his place in country music, turning in performances at the Bluebird Café, receiving placements on official CMA playlists, and collecting numerous awards. In 2020, Atkins made history with the first country hit in the UK and Europe to feature overtly gay lyrics. ‘Freedom’ was playlisted by hundreds of major country radio and pop stations.

And now, the singer-songwriter has released his debut album, Truth Be Told. Upon release, the album debuted at #1 on the country download charts in both the UK and New Zealand. This builds on the success of the album's preceding singles, which racked up four #1 chartings, thirteen Top-5s, and a further seven Top-10s across the UK, Canada and New Zealand. 

 

“The main reason I began a recording career was because I didn’t see myself fully represented in country music, and I figured there were a lot of other people out there who didn’t see themselves either. I wish I’d heard this kind of album when I was a kid."

Recorded between Nashville and the UK, Atkins executive produced the album with Dr Ford, working with GRAMMY-award winning fiddler Michael Cleveland, guitarist Chris Condon (Billy Ray Cyrus), dobroist and pedal steel player Smith Curry (Dolly Parton, Taylor Swift), harmonica player Will Wilde (Blanco Brown, Diplo), singer-songwriter Anna Pearson, and GRAMMY-nominated mastering engineer Pete Lyman (Chris Stapleton, Brandi Carlile). The collection also includes features by trailblazers Rissi Palmer and Hollier.

Hailing from the picturesque villages of England’s rural northeast, Atkins connected with country music at a young age through Alan Jackson cassette tapes and Shania Twain CDs. These influences, he says, swayed the musical direction of the album.

 

“There’s a real mix of 90s-style honkytonk and country-pop on show here. It was important to me to feature fiddle and steel and prominent harmonies. It was also important that, lyrically and musically, there was an arch from the first track to the last. All of the songs feed a bigger story about my love-life and finding my place in the world. I hope everyone can see parts of themselves in that story when they listen.”

As well as his recording and songwriting career, Atkins is the founder and host of Proud to Be Country, a radio series which features LGBTQ+ country artists. The show goes out on ARC Radio in the UK.

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Tommy's debut performance at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, Tennessee. June 2018.

Tommy Atkins - Kiss Me, Cowboy - Country Music Artist - EP Cover

Tommy's EP, Kiss Me, Cowboy, was released September 2020. It went on to hit #1 in 3 countries.

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Tommy's first award was a Listener's Choice for Male Artist of the Year. December 2019.

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2020 saw Tommy win 'New Artist of the Year' with Country Queer, and a nomination at ITV's NDAs.

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Proud to Be Country returns June 2021 for a second season on ARC Radio. Check out the Spotify playlist.

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Be sure to follow Tommy on social media for lots of fun content, including cocktail recipes inspired by his songs!

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Kiss Me, Cowboy was featured on the CMA's official Country Pride Playlist - June 2021.

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It Took a Woman saw Tommy duet with one of his idols, Rissi Palmer. It became Tommy's 7th Top 10 in the UK. June 2021.

Tommy's debut album, Truth Be Told, was released on September 1 2021. It hit #1 on the Country download charts in the UK and New Zealand.

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