See Scotty McCreery Cover Haggard, Cash and Alabama in Surprise Medley - Rolling Stone
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See Scotty McCreery Cover Haggard, Cash and Alabama in Surprise Medley

Singer highlights his traditional-country roots with series of iconic covers

During Scotty McCreery’s career-breaking run on American Idol, the country singer kept things contemporary, singing songs by 21st century artists like Josh Turner, Thompson Square and John Michael Montgomery. He’s been turning back the clock this summer, though, crooning a medley of country classics during a string of headlining shows.

Above, McCreery leads the crowd through snippets of songs from the Fifties, Sixties, Eighties and Nineties. Roger Miller’s “King of the Road” kicks things off, followed by a pair of prison songs — Merle Haggard’s “Mama Tried” and Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues” — and a singalong version of Alan Jackson’s “Chattahoochee.” The medley ends with Alabama’s “Mountain Music,” with McCreery singing a few line of the 1982 chart-topper before introducing the members of his band. Throughout the seven-minute medley, McCreery — still baby-faced at 22 years old — sings in a strong, clear baritone that’s only become stronger since his Idol days. In fact, the whole performance feels like a tribute to the show that launched him into the spotlight, with McCreery proving he’s still able to sing other artists’ songs with conviction.

McCreery, who released his biography, Go Big or Go Home, earlier this year, continues to tour throughout summer, presumably working his way toward a follow-up release to 2013’s Number One album See You Tonight.

In This Article: Scotty McCreery


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