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Byrd on Byrd: Country Music Star Talks Hunting, Fishing, Conservation and Kids

Following and speaking from his heart has always worked for Tracy Byrd.

In Nashville, where music careers are often decided by committee, Byrd has held fast to his own creative vision, charting 13 top-ten singles, an arsenal of hits, five gold albums and one double platinum album. Unlike many who attain such celebrity, he also remains unwaveringly true to himself as a devoted family man.

Through it all, as if weaving together the different parts of his life, is Byrd's unabashed love for hunting and fishing.

It's all part of the reason why Byrd was selected as honorary chair of National Hunting and Fishing Day, set for Sept. 23.

And it's all part of Byrd's new straight-from-the-heart interview now available in a free audio file (MP3) at three Web sites: tracybyrd.com, nhfday.org and nssf.org.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation, which founded National Hunting and Fishing Day in 1971, produced the 9-minute audio file as a way to reach out to new audiences with a strong message about traditional outdoor activities.

In the interview, Byrd talks hunting, fishing, conservation, kids and country music, including his newly released single titled Cheapest Motel, and upcoming new album, Different Things.

He also gives a nice shout-out to Wonders of Wildlife, the National Fish and Wildlife Museum and Aquarium in Springfield, Mo. The museum is the official home of National Hunting and Fishing Day and the only hunting- and fishing-focused facility that's both affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution and accredited by the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Byrd is the second two-time honorary chair of National Hunting and Fishing Day. The first was country music legend Hank Williams Jr. Other honorary chairs have included George Bush, Tom Seaver, Arnold Palmer, Terry Bradshaw, George Brett, Robert Urich, Ward Burton, Louise Mandrell, Travis Tritt, Wade Boggs and many other sports and entertainment figures.

"Tracy is a wonderful ambassador, helping the media and music fans understand that America's hunter- and angler-based model for conservation funding is a success story unmatched anywhere in the world," said Tony Schoonen, executive director of Wonders of Wildlife.

Byrd said, "It was an honor and a natural fit for me to be this year's honorary chairman for National Hunting and Fishing Day. When I was asked to chair again in 2006, I couldn't say