Trace Adkins Talks Using His Country Music Expertise for ‘Monarch’

by Suzanne Halliburton

You probably know Trace Adkins as a country music superstar and the new lead on Monarch. But did you know he’s also the show’s unofficial historian?

Yes, if the writers of Monarch, the new Fox drama set for the fall schedule, screw up a detail, Adkins says he’ll correct it. This 60-year-old has been singing professionally for almost 30 years. So he knows his stuff.

A Fox entertainment reporter asked Adkins if Monarch uses him as a resource. That’s a yes.

“I did a couple of times,” Adkins tells Fox News. “It was more along the lines of country music history stuff. I noticed in the script that they said something about Johnny Cash a couple of times. I just went, “Excuse me, that’s not true, I don’t care if it’s just TV, don’t say that.”

Adkins didn’t offer any details about how and why Johnny Cash got a mention. Guess we’ll have to wait until fall. Monarch is all about a modern-day first family of country music. Fox likes to create dramas with the music business as a backdrop. It worked well with Empire, which told the story of a family that dominated hip hop.

Now, it’s country music’s turn for the drama. Adkins portrays Albie Roman. Albie is a country king, but you could say the crown is kind of fading. Albie hasn’t had a hit in a decade. And he’s got anger issues. Susan Sarandon is Dottie, the definitive queen of country music and her family. Luke Roman is Albie and Dottie’s only son. He’s also CEO of the family’s business, which is dubbed Monarch Entertainment. Daughters Gigi and Nicky are the country stars in waiting.

Trace Adkins, Susan Sarandon and Fox Entertainment CEO Charlie Collier talked Monarch last month during the network’s Upfront presentation. (FOX via Getty Images)

Of Course Trace Adkins Will Sing on Monarch

There will be singing. You can’t make a show about country music without picking up a guitar and a microphone.

Adkins also offered a preview of some of the music you might hear from Albie. It sounds terrific.

Adkins told Fox: “The coolest thing musically for me is I never would’ve dreamed of going in the studio and covering a Merle Haggard song or a Willie Nelson song or Waylon Jennings.

“The music also underlines everything. That’s what drives the whole train. That’s kind of the way it is for me.”

Fox initially planned for a spring premiere of Monarch. It was set to follow the NFC championship game, Jan. 30. But Fox pulled the show. With the series still in production, the network didn’t want to risk it being shut down because of the Covid pandemic.

So Fox made it a focal part of the fall schedule. It’ll get a two-night premiere on Sept. 11 and 12th.