In 2011, a 16-year-old country boy with a powerful, deep voice was crowned the champion of Season 10 of American Idol. Now, at 25 years old, Scotty McCreery has been captivating country fans for eight years and counting.
At such a young age, McCreery has already lived an eventful life. So a few years back, he felt it was the right time to write about his experiences. His book Go Big or Go Home: The Journey Toward the Dream, was released in 2016 and details his life story, especially his time on American Idol.
After the book’s release, he was traveling across the country to promote it, and stopped at bookstores along the way to sign copies for fans.
In the middle of his busy schedule, McCreery found the time to talk to The Tennessean about his book and some of his life experiences that made him who he is. One such moment was during his time on American Idol, and was surprisingly controversial.
During the week of the competition where contestants sang songs from movies, McCreery originally chose Fred Neil/Harry Nillson’s “Everybody’s Talkin'” because he liked it and thought it would showcase his voice.
But he later realized the song was from the X-rated film Midnight Cowboy. Although it was days before the show, he told the executives that he refused to sing it.
When the executives told McCreery he had to sing the song, he flat out told them “no.” Knowing he had young fans, McCreery didn’t want them to go look up the movie after they heard him sing the song.
“I said, ‘With all due respect, I’m not going to walk on stage,’” he recalled.
That made the executives change their minds, so they let McCreery sing George Strait‘s “I Cross My Heart” from the movie Pure Country instead.
Clearly the choice paid off for McCreery, since he remained a fan favorite and ended up walking away with the winning title.
Looking back on the moment, McCreery is glad that he stood up for himself and what he believed in. “I kind of pat myself on the back for sticking to my guns,” he said. “That was a lesson I learned firsthand through all of that.”
We’re glad that McCreery kept true to who he was, and he ended up delivering one extraordinary performance as a result. Check it out in the video below!
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