Kenny Rogers knows his way around a camera and a tennis court
If you go
What: Kenny Rogers in concert
Where: American Music Theatre, 2425 Lincoln Highway East, Lancaster
When: 8 p.m. Thursday, July 16
Details: Order tickets by phone at 800-648-4102, 717-397-7700 or online at tickets.amtshows.com
It seems like there hasn't been a time when Kenny Rogers wasn't one of music's most recognizable voices.
A husky-voiced, three-time Grammy Winner, Rogers has sold more than 120 million albums and has 24 No. 1 hits to his credit. Rogers' resume includes a list of familiar tunes too numerous to mention. A few of the highlights are "Lady," "Islands in the Stream," "Lucille," and of course, "The Gambler."
The country icon will be performing some of his best-known work when he brings his "Through the Years" world tour to American Music Theatre in Lancaster on July 16.
It's a return to a part of the country with which Rogers is familiar. He's played York Fair multiple times, most recently in 1995.
"I love going to places that care about the music," he said in a telephone interview.
Rogers' fans turn out to hear the tunes they know and love. He's happy to oblige.
"I'd hate to be the guy who goes out there [on stage] without them," he joked.
Rogers is partial to songs that tell a story, ballads "that say what every man would like to say and what every woman wants to hear," he said.
He also likes to keep his show conversational, chatting with the audience between numbers.
"I do some humorous stuff, and try to keep it seamless," he said.
An avid photographer, when Rogers' not behind the microphone, you're likely to find him behind a camera lens. He likes to photograph waterfalls and other natural scenes. A fourth book of his photographs, "Places I've Been, Things I've Seen," is scheduled to come out early next year.
Rogers takes his photography seriously. He sought out some of the best photographers -— John Sexton, an assistant to the landscape photographer Ansel Adams, and Yousuf Karsh, the famed Canadian portrait photographer — to tutor him.
Rogers gets deeply immersed in his hobbies.
When Rogers got into tennis, at the relatively late age of 35, he would be on the court eight hours a day. He's faced off against scores of pro tennis players, through the years, including plenty of Wimbledon winners. He doesn't play any longer, though.
"I miss that more than anything," he said.