On This Day: Kenny Chesney Performs at the White House for President George W. Bush in 2006

by Katie Maloney

Fifteen years ago, Kenny Chesney brought country back to the White House during a performance for President George W. Bush.

2006 was a big year for country music superstar Kenny Chesney. He won the CMA Entertainer of the Year award for the second time. He released his first live album, “Live: Live Those Songs Again.” And he received a pair of custom cowboy boots from former President George W. Bush. You heard that right, the President gifted Kenny Chesney a pair of boots! Why did the President give Kenny Chesney new boots?

It all started when Kenny Chesney performed during a dinner at the White House for Australian Prime Minister John Howard. And when a big-time celebrity performs at your house, you give them a gift. So, that’s exactly what Bush did. During the dinner, Chesney performed some of his hit songs while sporting his new boots. Apparently, Chesney and Bush both purchase boots from the same custom bootmaker in Houston, Texas. Bush owned two dozen pairs of boots from R.J.’s Boot Company. And Chesney’s gifted pair were made of black eel skin with a black calf top and black eel inlays. The boots also featured the initials “K.C.” and had images of the U.S. and Australian flags.

“The president knows what to give somebody,” said Chesney before his performance.

What Do Kenny Chesney, the Queen of England and Dolly Parton All Have in Common?

We’ll give you a hint: it has to do with their feet. If you guessed cowboy boots, then you’re right! Rocky Carroll of R.J.’s Boot Company in Houston Texas, has custom-made boots for the Queen, Prince Philip, Princess Diana, Oprah Winfrey, Willie Nelson, George Strait, Clint Black, Rogers Clemens, Kenny Chesney and Dolly Parton, just to name a few. He made Liz Taylor’s $40,000 cowboy boots with nine carats of diamonds. Carroll also made Chris Hadfield, the first Canadian to walk in space, a pair of boots complete with the NASA logo and a maple leaf design.

Additionally, Carroll has made boots for four decades worth of presidents including Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Other world leaders have also worn his boots including Russian presidents Vladimir Putin and Mikhail Gorbachev.

In fact, Carroll’s business cards say, “The President’s Boot Maker and ‘Boot Maker to the Stars.”

A set of boots from Rocky Carroll start at $500, with an average price of $1,000 to $1,500. He uses materials including alligator, eel, ostrich and calf. And each pair is customized with designs unique to the buyer – Just like Kenny Chesney’s included his initials.

“I try to build your personality into your boot,” he said.

“I love it,” said Carroll. “And I like to make something nobody can do.”

The best part is that each set of boots is handmade using a mold of the buyer’s foot. You can’t get much comfier than that!

“It fits like a glove. You ever wear a handmade boot, you won’t go back to a store-bought boot,” said Carroll.

Carroll’s son agreed, “They are like wearing slippers. They are incredible.”

In conclusion, if you’re looking to join the ranks of Kenny Chesney and the Queen, take your boot game to the next level and check out R.J’s Boot Co.

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