Bucky Covington was about to release his second album in 2009 when Lyric Street, his label, went kaput.
And in this day and age of shrinking fortunes in the record business, he has struggled to find another label. In an interview earlier this week, he said he’s getting close to a deal with a new label though he can’t say who yet. “It held me back more than a year,” he said. “It was frustrating. There was nothing I could do about it.”
In the interim, he makes most of his money touring, though he has only one full album under his belt. Fortunately, that album generated several modest hits (”I’ll Walk,” “It’s Good To Be Us,” “A Different World.”) He’s also released three other singles, none which made the top 20.
With his income, he was able to afford to purchase a 90-acre farm outside of Nashville. Most of it is actually woodland and trails, not a farm with tomatoes and corn. He does mow six or seven acres of grass with a $9,000 lawn tractor. “Great thing about 90-acre farm is there’s always something to do,” he noted. “Aggravating thing about a 90-acre farm, there’s always something to do.”
“I absolutely love my job,” Covington said. “I like talking to you. I like meeting people at meet and greets.” The aw-shucks North Carolina native with an identical twin finished eighth season five, the most popular season in terms of ratings and arguably, in terms of depth and post-”Idol” success.
He knew in 2006 that where he was, “Idol’ was his best route to stardom. He couldn’t afford to go to the Memphis auditions but Hurricane Katrina forced “Idol” to move it to Greensboro, N.C. So he was able to try out and make it on the show. But he had no cash and the weekly stipends on “Idol’ didn’t cover his expenses at home. He had to borrow $500 from his dad while on the show.
Once he got the $100,000-plus money from the “Idols Live” tour, he used some of it to buy a bus, as well as create Bucky Covington LLC and build his team. “One thing is whether you come in 10th or first, you need to hit the ground running,” he said, the minute the show is over. “You have to realize you aren’t nearly as big as you think you are. You’re as hot as the next season.”
Fortunately, he built goodwill within the country world and always struck fans as the real deal. He will be at Wild Billl’s on Friday, July 1. “Country music fans don’t like the person for the song,” he said. “They like the person for the person.”
He has played the venue before. “I remember it’s huge and those beer girls, they kind of rock!” he said.
Divorced around the time of “Idol,” Cpvington has found a new girl and was recently engaged, he said. And his twin brother Rocky has been married for many years. But he said his new guitar player does look like him and I presume he’s available.
IF YOU GO
9:30 p.m., Friday, July 1, 2011