Former ‘Idol’ Casey Abrams still an upright bass kind of guy
By Myrna Petlicki For Sun-Times Media April 3, 2014 12:32PM
Casey Abrams, a contestant on the 2011 season of "American Idol," performs at the Skokie Theatre April 4. | HANDOUT PHOTO
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‘An Intimate Evening
with Casey Abrams’
8 p.m. Friday, April 4
Skokie Theatre, 7924 Lincoln Ave., Skokie
(847) 677-7761; skokietheatre.org
Casey Abrams is coming to town.
That’s great news for fans of “American Idol,” who cheered him on as he placed sixth in the 2011 season. The thoroughly likeable 23-year-old, who plays 11 musical instruments, presents “An Intimate Evening with Casey Abrams” at the Skokie Theatre April 4.
We chatted with Abrams from his California home.
Q. You were born in Texas but spent some of your early years in Chicago — preschool through fourth grade. Do you think your years in Chicago influenced your musical tastes?
A: That’s where I learned the recorder. From there, I started taking piano lessons. That’s where I started singing the Beach Boys and the Beatles in the car. My first music lesson was in Wilmette. I went to McKenzie Elementary School.
Q. You studied classical bass and piano, and were in a number of jazz ensembles. How did you wind up auditioning for “American Idol,” which is a singing competition?
A: During high school, I was just an upright bass player. The talent shows needed singers so I started playing bass and singing. I wasn’t really into it in college and then I realized I wanted to sing a little bit more, so I tried out for “Idol.”
Q. What was the best thing about your “American Idol” experience?
A: It was cool because a lot of people were watching and influencing what song choices I should make. When you go on Twitter, you get this instant feedback.
Q. What was the worst thing about being an “Idol” contestant?
A: The hours you had to spend but I learned from those hours. It kind of relates to real life.
Q. You had an interesting mix of judges the tenth season — Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler. Did you have a favorite?
A: Steven was the coolest.
Q. What did you think of his wardrobe?
A: I don’t know if it was from the boys’ or the girls’ section, but it was always cool.
Q. What were some of the best things that happened as a result of being on “American Idol.”
A: Now I’m doing my own shows. I’m making my own videos. It’s nice to get a solo career out of it. I’m even going to be acting pretty soon. We did this Kickstarter for a movie called, “Offer & Compromise.” I play this guy stuck at a debt collection agency.
Q. Are you still in contact with your fellow Season 10 finalists?
A:Yeah. I always hang out with Haley (Reinhart). In fact, I’m going to hang out with her tonight.
Q. What can audiences expect to see and hear when you perform at the Skokie Theatre?
A: They can expect craziness. They can expect to be played with emotionally — in a good way. The audience is going to be a part of the show.