With another year of American Idol over, and another winner crowned, it’s hard to forget the “Idols” that have proven why the show was a true launching pad for talent. One, for example, has moved to Nashville and just released his latest single, “Laying Me Low.” Yes my friends, I am talking about David Cook.
Speaking with me on a rainy Nashville day, I congratulated Cook on his third feature in Broken Records Magazine. He requested a plaque or something to commemorate the milestone. Duly noted.
His latest single, co-written by Cook along side Andrew Waldeck and Chris Reardon, is a slight departure from what his rabid fans may be used to. Lyrically, musically, and emotionally, it is a little bit darker yet still has the groove that he’s laid down through his first three records.
When speaking about the single and the other “6 or 7 strong songs,” David tells us that these songs won’t all be about “boy loves girl and love with a pretty bow on it.” Instead, his new music may be a bit darker in tone.
“Laying Me Low,” for example, was originally to be just a “staccato guitar part and vocals,” but when Waldeck and Reardon came back with their version, David just loved it but he added, “I’m like…I don’t play piano!”
Recently, David decided to leave his West Coast home for somewhere a bit more musical. Since Nashville is the home of Country music, I figured I’d ask if he has decided to cross the musical line and add some Country elements. Remember, he is a Southern boy from Missouri. With the exception of “a little Mandolin undertone” in songs, Country has not found a home in his music but he may have found a home in someone else’s Country songs. He can’t say whom yet, but he has “one in the can” and he is working on one today (May 17th) too.
Most musicians, myself included, dream about the day that we can put a platinum or gold record on our walls. I’ve never cared about a Grammy, Billboard, VMA or any other award, but a plaque that says you’ve sold 500,000 or 1 million units is the ultimate. Now that the Recording Industry Association of American (RIAA) has decided to allow streaming services to count towards those certifications, it may help independent artists reach the goal that most would never reach. David, on the other hand, would love more plaques to put on his walls (especially the Broken Records Magazine one), but sees the streaming services of the business as a helpful way to bring music to more fans as long as it still allows them to earn a living. Cook remembers, “I had heard about an artist who had like 500,000 or 1 million streams or 2 million streams and they received a check for $140.”
This is why fans should support their favorite artists through going to concerts and buying their merch- one thing Cook fans never stop doing. I still remember my first David Cook show February or March of 2009 in Atlantic City, NJ with Ryan Star opening. Almost everyone at that show had either a “Declaration Tour” T-shirt or a homemade Cook shirt.
If you’ve ever seen David and his band live, you know that you’re in for an actual show. His live performances don’t need crazy backgrounds and choreography- instead, Cook takes us into a journey of a rock show. After all, David is a “rock guy.” “I’m about guitar, bass and drums.”
The millions of viewers who watch American Idol were given a treat on May 2nd when he returned to the Idol stage to debut “LML.” Returning to American Idol is “always fun” he said, and David loved knowing that he only had to get on stage that one night and not “week after week like the contestants.”
In other live concert news, keep your fingers crossed for some tour dates to come along the way. Nothing has been officially signed off but Cook is hoping to do a club tour promoting the new single.
And the award for most original tattoo goes to (drum roll please)… David Cook! Recently there has been a lot of chatter about the tattoo that DC has. In the past Cook told a fan that it was the Monster Energy Drink logo. “I’m sorry to that person if they are reading this,” he added but did tell us what the tat really is. “I went into the studio and said the names of my nieces and nephews. I took the soundwaves and got them tattooed on me.”
Now in his fifth year being part of the Race for Hope in WashingtonDC, Team Cook raised “just over $90,000” last time he looked and the race over all took in about $2.3 million. Cook said it’s a “cathartic experience” and that when he was on stage watching the pre-roll before his recent Idol performance, he couldn’t believe it has been four year since his brother passed away.