Yahoo! Music's Lyndsey Parker had a chance to interview Casey James when the American Idol tour stopped in LA -- after he tweeted about recording with Sony, but before the official announcement was released about his record deal. As he was about to be signed to a country label, but hadn't in the past seemed to be an exclusively country artist, the natural question was what being on a Sony Nashville label would mean for the direction of Casey's music.
Casey's answer: "It is in Nashville, but there’s a lot of stuff out that there that I wouldn’t consider traditional country by any stretch of the imagination. It’s going to be what I’ve always done. Texas music–a mix of rock, country, blues, soul, funk, whatever…anything that’s good, it’s going to be on there…lots of guitar, good melody lines, good lyrics.”
Here's the link to the Yahoo! Music blog containing the interview.
Elsewhere, Houston Chronicle music blogger Joey Guerra, who has not always been the most fervent Casey James fan, in announcing the record deal, added "I'd expect it to outsell forthcoming 2010 releases from DeWyze and Bowersox." I'd say that was a very accurate prediction on his part. You can see the full blog here.
Sony's announcement was covered by his hometown papers, the Weatherford Democrat and the Mineral Wells Index, as well as MyFoxDFW
Casey's signing made news in the country music world as well, with CMT posting this article about the signing. The Country Music Rocks blog wrote about it as well, here.
But the biggest splash was made in the various social networking sites where Casey James' fans posted their congratulations. Whether on Facebook, on Twitter, on message boards, or on blogs, fans who had been anticipating the announcement for some time were thrilled when it was finally, officially made and they unleashed an outpouring of love to the newly-signed artist. Congratulations came not only from around the country, but literally from around the world as, just on this site alone, there are fan postings from Egypt, South Africa, the Philippines, Scotland, Brazil, Canada, England, Finland, Japan, Sweden, Israel, Norway, Singapore, Mexico, Latvia, Venezuela, and the Middle East.
Today being the day after the big announcement, it is a good time to reflect on what it means -- and what it doesn't mean. It means Casey will get to make a record. That is huge; it's what every artist dreams about. But being signed does not guarantee success, as my earlier post "What Does it Mean to be Signed" explained. He needs not only the help and backing of his new record label, but the continued involvement from all his fans. What his fans can do in the next six months is what they've been doing -- follow him, support him, talk about him. Whenever you see an article, forward it along, post a comment. When there are polls or votes, bring his name up.
Casey's publicist will do the heavy lifting -- trying to convince People magazine, for example, that this terribly unattractive guy should somehow be included in their Most Beautiful People edition or getting him invited to those rare country awards shows (there are only about three of them a week, I think). All kidding aside, even with an artist as marketable as Casey James, the publicist has a big job to do, because there are no guarantees in the music business. But he won't be doing it alone, because Casey James has an active and devoted fan base that has been supporting him since the first time they heard him sing. These fans will continue to work hard on his behalf and will keep on supporting and promoting this Texas singer-musician because we believe in him.