Archives For gavin degraw

Erin Brady entered the Miss Connecticut USA pageant in 2011, seeking to represent The Nutmeg State in the Miss USA 2012 competition. The East Hampton, Conn. Native placed first runner-up; not bad considering it was her first pageant, ever.

About a month after the October 2011 event, Brady’s boyfriend Tony Capasso proposed, and she said yes.

“He had it planned and he said, ‘Thank God you didn’t win because it totally would’ve blown our plans,’” Brady recalled in an interview with “The Ralphie Show.” “After the first Miss Connecticut (USA) we left for Italy, about three weeks later.”

The current titleholder revealed that she and Capasso discussed the idea of another try for the crown before she entered in 2012.

“It was, ‘If this is something you want to do, by all means,” Brady noted of her fiancé’s response to her idea. “Obviously not knowing that I’d become Miss USA!”

For full disclosure, I was a member of the judges’ panel that placed Brady second in 2011. While she had the look, I felt her lack of experience would have hurt her during the national competition in Las Vegas. Hindsight is 20/20 of course; Brady concurred.

“I hadn’t really had any clue as to what was involved and what I needed to prepare for the next year,” she said. “Coming first runner-up for me, never having done it in that system, was just overwhelmingly exciting.”

Little did Brady know, the “overwhelmingly exciting” part of her life was just getting started – the engagement, winning the state qualifier, and taking the Miss USA crown in Vegas last June. Now she finds herself yielding offers like the one she accepted to star in Gavin DeGraw’s new music video for his single, “Best I Ever Had.”

“I actually had really been a big fan of his even before he kind of came back and has this new flavor and this new sound,” Brady said, referring to the up-tempo, rhyme-driven verses in the artist’s new single. “It was just great, because I had never been a part of that before.”

The project did prompt another conversation between Brady and her fiancé: the Accounting degree holder and DeGraw lock lips at the end of the piece.

“It was a little interesting, but it’s part of the job, and I thought it was tasteful,” she remarked. “He’s a gentleman, and we’re in front of 50 other people.”

Later this year Brady will travel to Russia to compete for the Miss Universe crown, currently held by former Miss USA Olivia Culpo. The pageant airs on November 9. The same country winning the title in consecutive years is not unprecedented; Venezuela completed the feat in 2008 and 2009.

Ed Sheeran is traveling the country with Taylor Swift on her “Red” tour, and is requested to perform at some of the biggest award shows in the U.S. But while speaking with “The Ralphie Show,” he revealed that he no longer approaches artists whom he is a fan of.

“I’ve been really disappointed a bunch of times,” Sheeran told me during an interview taped the weekend of the Billboard Music Awards. “A lot of people are d–ks.”

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Sheeran estimates that for every five singers he meets, one is usually genuinely nice. At first, he thought it might be an American thing. Then he realized that it simply falls along genre lines.

“Country artists are wicked,” Sheeran said, using the term as a form of endearment. “I’m English, and I’m a massive hip-hop fan. I grew up listening to a lot of rappers. When I was at The GRAMMYs and I met some people, it was just a bit like… you know, I’m not asking for anything, just a handshake. Some people wouldn’t even shake my hand.”

The “A-Team” singer revealed later that the particular encounter he was referring to involved rapper Nas. Sheeran owns all of the star’s albums.

“It’s not that hard to be nice man, for 15 minutes,” Sheeran continued. “One of the nicest people I ever met was Paul McCartney, and he doesn’t have to be nice to anyone, because he’s Paul McCartney.”

Sheeran did have a great encounter last weekend at 95.5 PLJ’s Summer Blast-Off, where he and Gavin DeGraw ended up jamming on stage together and exchanging pleasantries over Twitter. Another massively successful artist who is great with people: Sheeran’s tour-mate.

“Most big artists do pay-for meet-and-greets,” Sheeran noted, explaining how Swift’s “Club Red” works. “She sets up a club, they put pizzas in it, there’s like a photo booth in it, there’s Coca-Cola, all of this cool stuff, and her team goes out in to the crowd every night and picks out the most dedicated fans.”

The songwriter says most of the time, the fans that weren’t able to afford the best seats in the house end up with an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of hanging out in Club Red with T-Swift.

“For her to do something like that every single night, to walk off stage and not even take a break… and go in to Club Red, and do an hour and a half meet-and-greet for 20 people is pretty cool,” Sheeran said. “Because it’s not just a picture and a ‘See ya later,’ it’s (more).”

Another one of Sheeran’s friends that doesn’t mind giving back is Harry Styles. The last time Ed and I spoke, he revealed the story of Styles buying Domino’s Pizzas for the homeless in Los Angeles. When I informed the singer that The Mirror UK and subsequently the world picked up the story, he smiled.

“You know what, I’m down with Papa John’s as well,” Sheeran responded. “Can we just put out a story about them? They do these cheese-sticks that are out of this world. We don’t get them in England.”

It isn’t just you. Musicians are migrating away from New York City to Los Angeles, Nashville, and other areas populated by more like-minded artists and canvassed with sunnier skies.

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“New York has a lot of different industries. Even though the square-mileage is more concentrated, the industry is spread out as far as per capita goes here,” explained New York resident Gavin DeGraw.

The “Not Over You” singer bought a spot in Nashville about a year and a half ago.

“I still get my kicks here in New York.” That said, DeGraw seems to enjoy the community of peers he has found down south. “You can’t help but have anything you’re exposed to influence you,” DeGraw said of the move’s impact on his music. “I’m not sitting around consciously writing country songs. I think that a lot of times, that’s the perception with Nashville.”

Certainly there isn’t a need for DeGraw to change his music or the process behind creating it. The singer’s latest album, Sweeter, cracked the top 10 on its release; his second LP to accomplish this. Its lead single, “Not Over You,” went platinum. The album and tour cycle spawned Sweeter Live, a LP and DVD of DeGraw’s performance in Lancaster, CA this summer while on the road with Colbie Caillat.

“You get some of the banter that an artist has with the audience and some of that rapport that they develop,” notes DeGraw of the live album, which hit stores this week. “A lot of times those are my favorite elements of a show; those moments when you’re getting to relate with the audience, not just with the song, but in the stories between songs.”

That gives you a window not just in to DeGraw the performer, but DeGraw the person. Joking about holiday parties while talking about an upcoming performance for 95.5 PLJ, the singer noted social media and electronics’ hindrance on human interaction.

“We’re getting to the point where everybody is so consumed with documenting each moment that they’re in, that they’re failing to socialize properly,” he said. “We need to have sort of a forced socialization.”

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If this brings back bad memories of childhood road trips, I apologize.

First, an update on Gavin DeGraw from our friends at ABC News Radio:

Following the attack that put him in the hospital over the weekend, Gavin DeGraw will be missing a total of three concerts on his current tour with Train and Maroon 5. It’s no surprise that he won’t be able to make Tuesday night’s show in Saratoga Springs, NY, but Gavin has also scrapped appearances in Wantagh, NY on August 12 and Mansfield, MA on August 13.
As previously reported, after being attacked by a group of assailants on Sunday night, Gavin is suffering from a concussion, broken nose, black eyes and cuts and bruises. On Tuesday afternoon, he was discharged from New York City’s Bellevue Hospital, and evidently isn’t quite sure exactly what happened to him. On Tuesday, he tweeted, “Honestly, I don’t remember much [about the attack]. I only know I can recover from here.” He added, “Thank u all for your genuine concern. I love u guys.”

Again, I wish DeGraw nothing but a full and speedy recovery. In addition to those shows, other fan and radio commitments along with Wednesday’s scheduled appearance on “Live! with Regis and Kelly” have been postponed.

After I finished chatting with DeGraw on Saturday, his guitarist hopped on to the tour bus armed with a uStream-enabled iPhone so that DeGraw could conduct his weekly check-in with the video streaming site. Yours truly makes a cameo 1:50 in…


Thank you to radio industry rag All Access for covering my interview with DeGraw. Check out the article here.

Gavin DeGraw has found living a “normal” life has afforded him more experiences to write songs from, something he says will be apparent when Sweeter is released on September 20. However, attempting to live like everyone else may have lead to an alleged incident on Monday morning, in which the singer was brutally beaten by a group of men.

“When someone says, ‘Oh well maybe you’re not on tour for a year or so, you’re in New York hanging out, watching bands and things like that,’ that’s so important to me as a writer,” DeGraw shared with me on his tour bus Saturday afternoon. “That’s my real life; otherwise I’d just be sitting here on the bus, singing songs about traveling all the time.”

But don’t let him mislead you: DeGraw is doing his fair share of traveling. He played a show in Camden, NJ with Maroon 5 and Train on Friday night. The next evening, DeGraw departed from the tour to headline a small show just outside of Scranton, PA. Sunday night, the “I Don’t Wanna Be” singer rejoined with M5 and Train for a date at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, CT.

DeGraw, a Manhattan resident, returned home Sunday evening. According to a report in the New York Post, he was assaulted around 4 in the morning, after leaving some friends at a bar. The singer suffered a broken nose and facial cuts before stumbling 13 blocks. Still dazed, a cab struck an injured DeGraw as he was trying to flee. He eventually made it to Bellevue Hospital, where a rep for the artist told TMZ, who broke the story, that DeGraw is stabilized and under doctors’ supervision.

Almost two days prior, DeGraw was all smiles on his tour bus in Jermyn, PA. The stop was one of just a handful of headlining shows for the Upstate New York-born singer. Perhaps it was growing up in South Fallsburg, NY that kept him grounded to reality.

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“There’s a different reality on the road,” said DeGraw of a singer/songwriter’s life on tour. “When you come off the road, you kinda have to come off the road and just be normal, and then go, ‘Whoa, something very f’ed up happened to me today,’ and other people are like, ‘What do you think we all go through man?’”

Unfortunately for DeGraw, that “f’ed up” thing happened Monday morning, and proved another perception of a musician’s life incorrect.

“It’s funny talking with musicians about their schedule, and then you talk to someone who has a real job, and they’re like, ‘That’s your schedule? I wish I had that schedule.’”

Tonight, the only thing being wished upon is prayers for DeGraw and his family, as he recovers. The pop star was previously scheduled to rejoin Maroon 5 and Train Tuesday evening in Saratoga Springs, NY, and was slated to perform on “Live! With Regis and Kelly” Wednesday morning. As of press time, there was no word from J Records on the cancellation or rescheduling of either appearance.