Country singer Bucky Covington is getting ready for his show in Hamlet with another “American Idol” finalist, Kellie Pickler, and said he is excited to come home to Richmond County.
Pickler and Covington are scheduled to perform at Cole Auditorium on Thursday and Friday.
In an exclusive interview with the Daily Journal on Monday, Covington said even being close to the Carolinas makes him nostalgic.
“I am very excited, without a doubt,” said Covington. “Anytime we get to North or South Carolina, it feels like home. I start getting calls from my cousins.”
Country music has taken Covington all over the United States.
“You know, Hawaii is the only state I haven’t been to, and can you imagine how badly I want to go there?” said Covington with a laugh. “I just got back from Europe and it was great. We went to Kosovo, Germany and Amsterdam, which was awesome. I went and performed at a hospital for soldiers, where they go before they come home. It was great to go and hear what America has done for other countries without hearing it from the media. And you know, they love us.”
Covington said he has had fun getting to see his fans and said they come from all walks of life.
“Being from Rockingham, I didn’t get out much,” said Covington. “When I thought of New York, I thought of New York City. I didn’t realize that once you get up above New York City, everything is really country, like rodeo country boys wearing cowboy boots and cowboy hats.”
Covington had a similar culture shock when he went to California.
“California is just beautiful,” said Covington. “I didn’t know a lot of the rice we use in our country is grown in California. I went to the town where they had the first gold rush and just, wow.”
Covington said he has started watching the show “Ganglands” more closely since his visit to California. In notorious gang territory, Covington almost left his tour bus wearing “the wrong colors.”
“Um, you might not want to wear that,” he said a staff member said when he saw Covington making his exit.
“I had to learn what not to wear in certain areas,” said Covington.
As for Pickler, Covington is excited to see her and perform with her. He said the two are good friends.
“I just love her,” said Covington about Pickler, a native of Albemarle. “What a sweet, beautiful woman. I’m very much looking forward to it. We’re very good buddies. When I met her in California, it was like a breath of fresh air. She could understand the words that were coming out of my mouth. I actually just shot a video with Kellie not too long ago.”
Covington said he was informed his music video would be done in a “Dukes of Hazzard” fashion, so Covington called Pickler to wear the “daisy dukes.”
He mentioned his newest album, “9/11,” is about the men and women who helped in the chaos of the terrorist attacks, such as firefighters. This goes hand in hand with Covington’s cause. He is part of an organization called Help the Good Guys, and provides support and helps raise awareness of those who are struggling because of job accidents. Covington described one man he met that had run into a burning building to save someone and the building collapsed on the man, causing half of his body to burn. The accident caused him to be unable to work, and he soon had banks harassing him. With intervention from Help the Good Guys, the calls stopped coming.
“If you order my new album from HelptheGoodGuys.com, some of the proceeds go to the organization,” said Covington.
Covington said there is nothing he enjoys more than being in Richmond County, where he knows the roads and doesn’t have to use a GPS. He said he was here about a month ago, for downtime.
“I want to say thanks to the whole town. My Lord, I mean, they got behind me and supported me and I wouldn’t be where I was today if it weren’t for all those folks voting,” said Covington.
For more information about the concert, contact the Cole Auditorium box office at 910-410-1690.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 15, or by email at email@example.com.