‘Idol’ winner Scotty McCreery heads here

SHARE ‘Idol’ winner Scotty McCreery heads here

“American Idol” Season 10 winner Scotty McCreery brings his country music act to Naperville Saturday.

North Carolina native Scotty McCreery captured the national spotlight as he competed on “American Idol” — ultimately winning the high-profile singing competition in its 10th season. The young country singer has gone on to win multiple new artist awards, plus became the youngest man to ever have his first album top the all-genre Billboard Top 200 album chart.

McCreery will appear in concert at 8 p.m. Saturday at North Central College’s Pfeiffer Hall, 310 E. Benton Ave. in Naperville. For ticket information go to northcentralcollege.edu/showtix.

Q: Since your days on ‘American Idol,’ what are some of the most important things you’ve learned about the entertainment business and this world that you’re now a part of?

A: One of the biggest things I’ve learned is that show business IS a business. When I went into the whole ‘Idol’ stuff, I was just a kid who wanted to sing. But I’ve learned that there’s a lot more to it than just that. There’s a lot behind-the-scenes stuff that goes into booking concerts and guaranteeing that everything can come off the right way. It’s also about who you’ve got around you. That’s a big part of what keeps me sane. I’ve got a great crew and a great band on the road with me. I’ve got a great team back in Nashville that kind of keeps the balls in air for me, and keeps things churning, so I’m fine.

If you’ve got a good group around you, you’re able to do a lot of great things.

Q: I know that your personal faith is important to you. Can I assume that’s also a big part of what keeps you on track in this otherwise, often crazy business?

A: It definitely is important to me. Without it, I don’t know how I would be doing this. That goes back to what I was saying about my team. Everybody on the bus with me, traveling around the country, they’re great Christian guys. We kind of keep each other accountable. Otherwise, life on the road can get kind of crazy. You have to surround yourself with like-minded folks, who keep you from going off the deep end. So, yes. Faith is very much an anchor in my life.

Q: You’re coming to the Chicago area, with this Naperville appearance. Your thoughts about Our Town? There certainly are plenty of country fans here!

A: I love Chicago. Yes, there are good country fans up there, which I wouldn’t have realized until I got into all this. But, of course, as we know, there are country fans everywhere in this country and also overseas as well.

As for Chicago, as a real Southern boy, I like getting up there in the summer. It’s great in the summer. Wintertime it gets a little chilly for me.

Q: Obviously today, country music covers a wide range of artists and sub-genres. What are your thoughts about country music in general today, and your role in it?

A: For me, I’m kind of an old soul. I grew up listening to the traditional stuff. So it’s kind of weird to see things change like it is now. But it’s not a good thing or bad thing. I understand that everything goes in cycles. It’s more popular than ever today, and as a result we’re getting more fans in the genre.

It’s a cool thing. One of my things is to straddle the line between the very traditional and some of the newer aspects of country that are popular today. I’m 20 years old, so I’m trying to keep it current and keep it contemporary. I’m also going to try to throw some stuff in there to keep it along the lines of what I grew up listening to.

So, if you listen to my record, you’ll get a little bit of both.

Q: When it comes to your songwriting, what inspires you?

A: I like to pull from real-life stuff. It’s tough for me to write about stuff I’ve never been through or never even heard about. So I pull from stuff I’ve seen in my own life or have been through in real life — including things I’ve heard about that have affected people I’ve known.

I pull from everyday life and everyday stories, that’s kind of what country music is.

Q: A lot of musical artists, including a number of country stars, have also tried their hand at acting. Any thoughts about that for you?

A: I’ve had a couple of opportunities come my way. They haven’t been the right ones yet. But when then right one comes along, and it works out — who knows? Right now I’m mainly focused on the music and trying to take it to that next level.

But who knows. I acted once in my life and that was for a high school musical, “Bye, Bye Birdie.” I was only in it because of the Elvis angle, and I’m a huge Elvis Presley fanatic, so that worked out. [Laughs]

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