A series of ailments prompted The Gambler singer to announce his retirement plans last year (14), but as he prepares to release a new festive album and tour to promote it, he's busier than ever.

Rogers tells Rolling Stone magazine, "I have a new book that I'm doing. There are probably 550 pictures, so there will be at least two books. One will be called American Beauty, and it's all waterfalls and beautiful canyon shots. It's really spectacular.

"The other will be places I've been and things I've seen, and it'll be pictures from China, Africa, Europe, Switzerland, over the Alps in a helicopter."

And fans can expect a few breathtaking shots in there - because Rogers in no mere amateur.

He explains, "They gave me an honorary master's degree from the Professional Photographers Association."

And when he isn't taking photos, the country star is showing off his interior decorating skills.

"I'm about to do a project with a friend of mine, and I can't talk a lot about it but it'll be called Kenny World and have everything you ever dreamed of," he adds. "We're going to do a hotel, and I'm going to design it. I'm going to decorate all the rooms."

But his retirement plans are fixed, as far as touring is concerned - he recently confirmed his upcoming North American tour will be his last.

The Islands In The Stream singer had already hinted he is ready to tone down his touring commitments by playing a number of "farewell" shows in countries including New Zealand, Australia and South Africa earlier this year (15).

He has confirmed that his upcoming Once Again It's Christmas Tour, which begins in Ontario, Canada on 12 November (15), will be his last.

He recently said, "I've done this long enough. There's a fine line between being driven and being selfish, and I think I crossed that line when I was younger. I really want to be there with my kids and my wife. I don't see enough of them. And I have some things on my bucket list."