Sunday, 16 March, 2008 1:08 PM
CMA New Artist Spotlight: Chuck
by Joe Hardwick
2008 CMA Close Up News Service
Next time you pull up
to a restaurant in Nashville, look carefully at the valet: That
person who took your keys today might be signed to a major record
label deal tomorrow. That's what happened with Chuck Wicks, who
came to Nashville after growing up on a farm near Smyrna, Del.,
and attending Florida Southern College.
His dream had been to
play pro baseball, but by the time he'd reached his senior year
Wicks had traded his bat and glove for a ticket to Nashville. A
parking gig paid the rent and bought the time he needed to hone
his writing through collaborations with Monty Powell, Rivers Rutherford,
George Teren, Neil Thrasher and the Mobley brothers, Mike and Wendell.
Wicks eventually steered
himself into a contract with RCA Records, for whom he recorded his
debut album, Starting Now, produced by Dann Huff and Powell. As
co-writer of all but one of its 11 tracks, Wicks displays a style
that's expressive and accessible. On the first single, "Stealing
Cinderella," he shows particular sophistication as he switches
perspectives, from his own to that of the father of the girl he
hopes to marry; through lyrics that pass by like snapshots in the
pages of a photo album, he fuses these viewpoints into one vivid
Wicks' baritone voice
brings these top-notch tunes to life, pouring like honey over occasional
patches of sandpaper. It's the kind of voice that's sure to put
Wicks in the driver's seat from now on.
IN HIS OWN WORDS:
SONG YOU WANT TO
"'One Last Cry,' by Brian McKnight."
SONG YOU WISH YOU
"'I Will Always Love You.'"
BOOKS ON YOUR NIGHTSTAND
"The Bible and Us Weekly.
CD IN YOUR STEREO
"I just finished my record so, sadly, I've been listening to
myself, looking for mistakes. Oops, just found one. I'm a perfectionist."
TITLE OF YOUR AUTOBIOGRAPHY
YOUR MUSICAL HERO
"I grew up listening to what we now call the '80's station.
and was influenced by all kinds of music. Whether it was Chicago,
Journey, Alan Jackson, Garth Brooks or one of my favorite singers,
Brian McKnight. So I guess my musical hero was just great music.
YOUR PET PEEVE
WORD OR PHRASE YOU
REPEAT OVER AND OVER AGAIN
MODE OF TRANSPORTATION
"Private jet even though I've never been on one yet . but I
do drive a Truck."
MOMENT IN YOUR LIFE
WOULD YOU RELIVE IF YOU COULD
"Nothing. I love to remember and then look forward to the future."
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