Tim McGraw Releases Album, Produces TV and Stars in Film

Tim McGraw asks a lot of his fans.

Onstage, the country singer encourages them to live, love, dance, care, grab it all. Offstage, he urges them to vote, give blood, donate money, to help any way they can.

He asks even more of himself.

On March 28, he released his 10th CD: "Tim McGraw Reflected Hits Vol. 2."

Before the end of July, he will: Put the finishing touches on his "Tim McGraw: Reflected" television special, airing Friday, April 7, on NBC; join wife Faith Hill on a 70-city Soul2Soul II concert tour; and star in Fox's remake of "Flicka," set for big-screen release on July 29.

The TV special, his third, is his most intimate, he said.

"You know, I'm not a big talker, especially on the stage. So this special, there is probably a little more insight," McGraw told The Associated Press in a telephone interview from New York City.

Recorded at New York's Avalon Club and McGraw's getaway farm outside Nashville, Tenn., the show includes the orchestra-backed "My Little Girl," the title track from "Flicka."

Hill joins McGraw on the one-hour special for some gentle teasing and a fireplace duet of "I Need You."

Hank Williams Jr. returns to the farm house, built in 1843, where he grew up. McGraw bought it three or four years ago. McGraw tells Williams he was his inspiration: "There's a little Hank in everything I do."

McGraw and Hill are both 38. They were married in 1996 and have three daughters: Gracie, 8, Maggie, 7, and Audrey, 4. Between them they have recorded 16 albums and sold over 65 million. He's had 26 No. 1 singles, she's had 11. His name is on three Grammys, hers is ship in 1980.

McGraw heard the song while his father was sick and knew he would sing it, he said.

"Emotion helps in the music business," McGraw said. "You can't fake emotion when you're trying to sing. That's the real connection that people get with an artist. ... I like to think that when I put something on the table, you gotta believe it."

A lot of McGraw's songs look at the fragile side of life. Does that worry him? "Yeah, I could go at any time. But you don't live like that. You just live. There's a reason behind living. You live and try to do the best you can and try to be a good person."

McGraw writes a lot of songs but seldom records them "because they are no good," he claims. He did co-write "My Little Girl" for "Flicka."

The movie was important to him because he wanted his girls to see it. He wouldn't let them see him in the 2004 Billy Bob Thornton movie "Friday Night Lights" -- he played an alcoholic father. McGraw also appeared in the independent "Black Cloud" and Hill was in the 2004 remake of "The Stepford Wives."

McGraw and Hill are always reading proposed movie scripts and the search for music never ends.

They'd like to do a movie together someday. "But we're not going to do it just for the sake of doing it. It has to be something that would be special," he said.

They want to turn the farm into a summer home. For now, it's home to the family's bird dogs and horses. And it's where McGraw and his band, the Dancehall Doctors, go to practice.

McGraw would like to own another sports franchise -- he is minority owner of the Arena Football League's Nashville Kats. "I'm a sports freak," he said. "I'd love to see Nashville get a Major League Baseball team someday."

Also someday, he may run for governor or U.S. Senator from Tennessee. "Down the road," he said.

Meanwhile, he'll keep asking people to vote and speak his mind when he feels like it.

"That's why we're in America. That's why people are fighting -- to be able to speak what they feel. That's what this country was based on and founded on."

No matter what he does, you probably won't see McGraw dance. Why? "Cause I suck. That's the main thing. I definitely have a white man's disease when it comes to dancing."