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Friday, September 2, 2011

Bucky Covington Talks New Label, Drunk Tweeting and BLT Sandwiches

I still maintain that Bucky Covington’s self-titled debut album is one of the best CDs ever released by an “American Idol” contestant. But any new music from him got completely shanghaied by the folding of his label, Lyric Street Records.

So when the words “new record label” came out of Bucky’s mouth tonight, I was pretty jazzed. The official announcement won’t be released until next week, but I did manage to get some details out of him…

I had the opportunity to talk to Bucky before his soundcheck for his concert at Portsmouth River Days tonight. The show will start around 9:30 p.m., so you’ve still got plenty of time to get to the river and enjoy what will no doubt be a rockin’ good show.

When Bucky achieved such early success, I was happy for him. And now that I know he is such a good guy, I’m hoping he achieves that success—or more—again soon.

In all honesty, I could’ve hung out with Bucky all night. He’s that kind of guy. But we managed to have a pretty good time in the 20 minutes or so we had together.

Read on to get Bucky’s thoughts on touring, his record label shutdown, drunk tweeting and the pros and cons of BLTs for breakfast…

Welcome to Portsmouth, Sorry it’s so hot.

It ain’t so bad when you’re on the water like this. And that has got to be the absolute longest boat landing I have ever seen. You can’t miss that one. I could’ve backed a boat in with my bus. It’s a nice thing. It does look like everybody’s out on the river having a great time. With the stage right on the water, I tell you I’m looking for a great time tonight.

Tell everybody what they can expect tonight.

Well the first album I put out when I came off of “American Idol” debuted at #1 and went on to produce three consecutive Top 10s. First of all, I thank all the fans for that. That was a great way to walk into country music. For the show tonight, we’ll be playing about half of that. I’ve just signed up with a new record label. We have a new single coming across your radios in the next two or three months. The album another five, six months after that, of course, once the song releases. I’ll be playing about half the old album, half the new album. Plus some cover songs. You know, you just gotta come to see what cover songs we have. You can’t give it all away.

Oh come on. Just a little tease?

Okay, we’ll do Elvis. And then some.

That was a good tease.

Yeah. [laughs]

Tell me about the new record label.

Well we haven’t exactly put out a press release on it yet. It’s a great company. It’s a great company that’s moved into Nashville. I’m the first country artist they’ve signed. I’m absolutely thrilled. The guy that’s heading it up, Van, is also from North Carolina like myself. So far, I’m also working with a lot of people who were on Lyric Street. Of course, when Lyric Street Records shut down, everybody goes a little somewhere and a lot of the folks have gone over to this company. So I’m looking very much forward to working with some of these folks again.

So that had to be a disappointment when Lyric Street shut down.

It really is. Without a doubt, it really is but that’s one thing that scared me to death comin’ into the business. When I came into the business it was kind of battin’ a thousand. I came off of a big “American Idol” show, everybody knows who you are. But the scary thing to that is when all that goes away, how do you go away and then you get it back? ‘Cause that’s the way…It’s gonna happen. I’m sure it’s gonna happen again and again. Hope not. I really really really hope not. But it does happen all the time so it’s always something I have in the back of my mind. At least I’ve dealt with it now and it makes you much more comfortable in the business just having been through it a little bit.

I thought your album was one of the best, if not the best release of anyone from “American Idol.”

Well, thank you so very kindly.

Well don’t get mad at me for saying this, but I’m not that big of a country music fan. But I thought your album was so solid from beginning to end.

Well thank you. That’s very sweet of you. We’ll aim to change your mind tonight about that country thing [laughs].

I am so happy to hear that you’re working on a new release.

Without a doubt. They’re actually big in Los Angeles and everything and they’re ready to come into Nashville. Looks like everybody’s likin’ a little piece of that country which is…God bless you and thank you very much.

You have never stopped touring though.

That’s one thing we did when things got slow with everything. Off my first album, I had a song called “Hometown.” And I had this idea. I’m from a very small town called Rockingham, North Carolina. And I live in Nashville now. And every time you go to Chicago or Nashville, you say, “Where you from?” “I’m from a little town 45 minutes away.” Half hour away, three hours, four hours away. Nobody’s really from the big cities, you know. So I had the idea of I wanted to go on a hometown tour. Instead of going to Chicago, go two hours outside of Chicago and tour that area. And do the same thing in North Carolina, Alabama and every bit of it. We put that together and called it the Hometown Tour and it just…it started selling out in the beginning of it. God bless the people when they show up because I haven’t really had a whole lot of songs on the radio lately with the label shuttin’ down and everything. To think we came to town and all these people came out and just…well, frankly, got hammered with me is completely awesome.

What is it that you love about touring?

Touring altogether. For me, when I first saw myself playing on a stage it was the live shows. It was the instant gratification. I was in the Hannah Montana movie and I absolutely enjoyed doing it and I wanna do more movies without a doubt. But there’s a big difference of…See when I did the movie, a year later my cousin comes up to me and goes, “Oh my goodness, we saw you in the movie.” and I’m like what? Oh yeah, that’s right, yeah. ‘Cause see it was already gone for me because I did it a year ago but it just came out. And music, when you do a great song and I sing one of my songs and people sing the words back to you, I think that kind of tops all. I think there’s some great things we get to do. We get to see some wonderful charity events. We get to help out a lot of folks. I mean we as in country music artists in general. We do a lot of charity things. We help a lot of stuff, so there’s a lot of great things that go along with it. But when you’re standing on stage…writing and everything, the studio, everybody has fun. But when you’re standing on stage and you play something and the crowd just digs it, that definitely beats all. Without a doubt.

So what’s the one everybody digs the most?

Well, it’ll change. And that’s what’s great about it. You go to a theater show, it might be a song like “I’ll Walk,” a ballad. You go to a rockin’ fair like I have a feelin’ tonight’s gonna be, it’ll probably be “Good To Be Us.” It might be a song that’s not even been on the…not even been out yet. Something that’s just rockin’. The best part about it is it will change night after night depending on the crowd. I’m thinkin’ tonight it’s gonna be a rockin’ tune. Whichever one it’s gonna be, it’s gonna be a rockin’ tune. Everytime we come here, man, it just always rocks.

You’re going to have a lot of people comin’ from their high school football games.

Good deal. From me to all y’all, I hope you won.

Unless you have two teams from the same area.

Just remember, Bucky says, I hope you won. Both of you. I hope it’s a dead tie.

Where are you takin’ off to next?

We’ll go back into Nashville tomorrow and then I think I’ve got a show [Turns to his publicist]. It’s either Iowa or Wisconsin. You can go to though and be exact on point. Now you’re already on the Internet, you just go over there to and matter of fact, tweet me and let me know where I gotta be. So whoever goes to please tweet me and let me know where in the h—l I’m supposed to go Sunday. I’m lost. Help me, folks.

So you’re a big tweeter?

Actually no, I’m not a big tweeter. I’m starting…I have an idea, I have a tweet I have to call it in still because they’re still scared I’m gonna drunk tweet. I have a pretty big sense of humor so I’d hate to go sending something I think is funny and the whole world thinks it’s oh my goodness [laughs]. So yeah, all my tweets are still screened, but they are me. You have to screen it. We know what I’m talkin’ about, you don’t want that to be goin’ out. Well, some people might want that tweet goin’ out, but I don’t think I want that tweet goin’ out.

Do you Facebook?

I’m more of a tweeter than Facebook. We stay up on Facebook, of course, to let you know about events coming up and where I’m gonna be at and everything else, but definitely tweeting is a little more, I reckon, today? I’m still learning a lot of the social stuff. I’m slow.

But it’s a great new way to interact with the fans.

Without a doubt. I dig it. The other day I sent out a tweet about what I should have for breakfast—a BLT or a sausage biscuit. And you know there’s a lot of people who eat BLTs for breakfast? I didn’t know that. I thought it was a major lunch thing. I like them for breakfast but everybody said BLT, BLT. Of course, then again, my breakfast is kind of lunchtime. I kind of wake up like 10 or 11 and by the time you eat, it kind of is lunchtime. That’s probably the reason I got the big BLT response. I ended up eating chocolate chip pancakes in case you’re wondering.

That sounds good.

It was very good. I didn’t realize it was an option at the time [laughs].

Is there anything else you want to say to the fans?

You know, every time we come into Ohio, it’s just absolutely great to us every time. Thank you all very much for everything that you do. You know, I had no idea country music was so big in Ohio, because I’m from the Southeast. We think everything above the Mason-Dixon is New York City [laughs]. Turns out I was wrong. You all got more rednecks than we do [laughs]. I absolutely love coming to Ohio. Every time we come we have full crowds, people have a great time. Y’all come out, y’all look to have a good time. Come on out and have a great time tonight and we’ll see ya soon.

Bucky Rocks the River Tonight!

Just a reminder that Bucky Covington will be performing at Portsmouth River Days tonight (Friday) at 9:30 p.m.

I won't be at the concert tonight, so if anyone wants to share their thoughts, please feel free.

However, I will have more from Bucky later tonight and maybe a picture or two...

Stay Tuned...