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Idol Chit-Chat
This is your place to discuss all things "American Idol." The performances, the judges, the past contestants — it’s all right here.

Friday, June 1, 2007

My Night With Josh Gracin...

Before there was Carrie Underwood, Kellie Pickler or Bucky Covington to carry the “Idol” country torch, there was Josh Gracin.

But with the delay of his second album, Josh has gotten a little lost in the “Idol” shuffle. That's a real shame because Josh has got the goods as we saw in Portsmouth last night…

It’s nice to see artists who care about giving their fans a good show and Josh certainly delivered with his constant fan interaction. He threw t-shirts, drumsticks and even water into the crowd. During a rousing rendition of “Ain’t Goin’ Down (‘Til the Sun Comes Up), Josh was all over the venue to mingle with the audience who screamed through every minute of it.

And why wouldn’t they scream? Josh is every bit the hottie he was on “American Idol.” In fact, I would say he’s even hotter in person…

The hour-long set was pure energy as he performed several cuts off his first CD including “Wheels” and “Turn It Up.” “I Want to Live,” Josh’s first #1, was the second song of the show and a slightly faster pace for it worked nicely. There was also a scorching cover of Loverboy’s “Workin’ for the Weekend.”

The sweetest moment of the night was when Josh performed Third Day’s “Cry Out for Jesus.” I think Josh could have a real niche in Christian music if he ever wanted to go that route.

The segue into “Brass Bed” was a little strange at first, but the performance was so earnest, it was hard not to swoon. Even Marti Dodson of Saving Jane was singing along.

And of course Josh saved “Nothing to Lose” for last, whipping the crowd into one last frenzy before he doused them with water and left the stage…

There’s no doubt that Josh has come a long way from his “American Idol” days and he will undoubtedly keep getting better and better with his second CD—if we ever hear it.

The fine folks at Lyric Street Records tell me that Josh’s new CD should be out this fall, but I have to say that I’m still concerned. Josh did perform “I Keep Comin’ Back” and “All About Y’All,” but there was very little else in the way of new material. And even Josh himself didn’t seem certain about when the album would be out, saying something about recording material we’ll never hear.

A recent “USA Today” article said that Josh’s CD (which was supposed to be released last fall) was scrapped so his label could find better material for him after “I Keep Comin’ Back” didn’t chart all that well. There were also a few rumors flying last night about the delay…

Whatever the reasons, I hope they get resolved soon because Josh Gracin deserves to be a bona fide country star...

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