Friday, May 31, 2013

‘IDOL’ WINNER MCCREERY BALANCES SCHOOL WITH TOUR LIFE

Scotty McCreery was less than five months shy of his 18th birthday on May 25, 2011, when he was crowned the Season 10 winner on “American Idol.” That singular moment catapulted him into the world of country music.
“I know it hasn’t been that long ago,” McCreery said last week while preparing for a concert in Pittsburgh, “but I honestly have a hard time remembering much of that moment. It was a strange situation with Lauren (Alaina) standing there and finishing second with the confetti flying all over the place. I don’t recall what was said or what I did. Needless to say it was an awkward moment. But that moment changed everything.”
He went from a student’s desk in the junior class at Garner Magnet High in North Carolina to the stage of the Grand Ole Opry. The transition was one thing, but was the world of country music what he expected?
“I’ve heard that at rap and hip-hop concerts and rock concerts they have guards around the stage and the bands leave in a hurry,” McCreery said. “But country music isn’t like that at all. The singers go out and talk to the fans afterward; everyone is friendly to each other. If you have an impression of it (country music) from the outside, then let me tell you it’s exactly the same way on the inside.”
McCreery, who still hasn’t reached his 20th birthday, will perform in Southern California for the second time in less than a year (he was at the San Diego County Fair last summer) today at the Temecula Balloon & Wine Festival. He will follow that with an appearance Saturday at the Spotlight 29 Casino in Coachella.
“I had a great time last summer at the Del Mar concert. I love the San Diego area. Can’t wait to get back out there,” he said.
He launched his “Weekend Roadtrip Tour” in February and worked it around his class time as a freshman at North Carolina State, where he is majoring in communications with a focus on information media.
While most youthful athletes/celebrities choose to delay their education until their careers are over, McCreery went in the opposite direction.
“Education has always been important in our family,” he said. “I just finished my first year at N.C. State. We were able to work the classroom stuff around touring.”
Of course, first he had to finish high school after “Idol,” which he did. But what he didn’t do was get to play that final season with his high school baseball team.
“Yes, I missed playing, but I couldn’t do both being on ‘Idol’ then,” he said. “I was a pitcher. In high school I could throw in the high 80s, but I don’t think I was going to make it at the college level.” In his final high school game he struck out nine batters in a complete-game shutout. 
His father, Michael, who was raised in New England, played at the semipro level and is a lifelong Red Sox fan. “Our family has various rooting interests,” he laughed. “The Braves are one of our favorite teams, but we have to root for the Red Sox, too.
“I think there is a part of him (his father) that would have liked to have seen me continue in baseball,” McCreery said. “But he’s very proud of what I have accomplished.”
“Clear As Day” is his debut country album. It features a mix of new and old styles of country music. “I enjoy both (studio work and concerts),” he said. “You get to be creative in the studio, and it is all spontaneous and different every night on tour.”
So while McCreery’s country music career continues to grow, his launchpad, “American Idol,” seems to be in a state of disarray with tumbling ratings.
“I think it’s like anything else,” he said. “It’ll have its ups and downs. Maybe they do need a new judges’ panel. But they will figure it all out. It’ll be OK.” 


2 comments:

  1. Scotty Did Play Baseball His Senior Year in High School

    This is a very nice article about Scotty but they got it wrong about his High School baseball. Scotty didn't play baseball during his Junior year at Garner Magnet High School because he was out in California winning American Idol. He went back to Garner for his Senior year and he played baseball during the Spring. I know this because I went to 3 of the games! I was very fortunate to get to see Scotty pitch a couple of times.

    I especially remember "Senior Night" when the Senior players are honored along with their families. I got some wonderful photos of Scotty with Mike, Judy and Ashley out on the baseball field. There was a terrible thunderstorm before the game started and this kept a lot of people from coming early. I went early and got to spend some time with Scotty before the game. It was amazing to be able to talk and visit with Scotty with no one else around. There were a few people who got photos and autographs but there wasn't a big screaming crowd--mostly just local Garner people. Scotty pitched part of the game and there was a good sized crowd who came after the storm was over. After the game, Scotty signed autographs at a little table just beyond the bleachers. Blair Garner was there making videos and doing interviews. It was definitely one of the best days of my life--small town baseball, hot dogs, nice friendly townspeople, the McCreery family and a front row seat behind home plate to watch Scotty pitch. And being able to give Scotty a big hug before the game was the icing on the cake!!!

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    1. Lucky you, It had to be nice to seen him before any one got there. you had a great time spending time with our Scotty one day you will never forget. I Bet the pictures are out of this world great. I listen to one or two of the games on the Computer and it was fun. and they played his songs when he went up to pitch. cause you could hear it in the background. That is what I want to do is give him a big hug. Was Blair Garner fun seeing. Love Our Idol Scotty So much.

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