When Coffey Anderson takes the stage on “Nashville Star” tonight, the NBC Television audience can expect to see something they may not have seen before: Coffey Anderson.

“The ‘Southern Man’ is back on Monday,” Anderson said in a telephone interview prior to the third week of the 12-week series. The show airs on NBC at 8 p.m. CDT.

Anderson said the judges told him that after three weeks, they still didn’t believe that they had seen the real Coffey Anderson.

“‘We want to see you,’ they told me,” Anderson said. “America, they’ve given me the green light to run wild. So that’s what I’ll try to do. Just stick with what I do and do well. I love pulling people together when I’m on stage. That’s what my gift is.”

The theme for tonight’s show will be “Pop Goes Country,” and performers are being asked to take a popular song and give it a country rendition.

“That’s perfect timing for me,” Anderson said.

“I’ve had so much advice, good advice,” Anderson said of the mentoring he’s received, largely from recording star and Stephenville resident Jewel, one of three judges on the show. “The mentoring has been great. They’ve suggested I cut down on the vocal rifts, and to take some lessons from (the works of) Patsy Cline and Vince Gill. But I got down on my knees and asked the Lord how to take that and still be me. I am still me. So there’s been absolutely no stress this week. They’ve said they want to see me, so that’s what they’re going to see.”

Anderson said one of the judges commented after his performance last week that he didn’t seem “to be there” during his performance, and that rang true of the singer who graduated from Bangs High School and Howard Payne University. He is the son of Stanley Anderson of Bangs and the late Gloria Anderson.

“Jewel said I was there, but I wasn’t there,” Anderson said of his performance a week ago.

“I really miss my family,” Anderson said. “That caught up with me last week. They told me that when you’re a professional, you’re going to be away from family for periods at a time, and you have to learn to deal with that. I missed my daughter’s kindergarten graduation while here in Nashville.”

“Nashville Star” opened its summer run with 12 performers striving to gain the television audience’s ap-proval and emerge at the end of the series as the winner of a multi-release recording contract, a new pickup and an appearance at the Summer Olympics in China. The show ends for one act each week.

While the judges made the decision the first week, audience voting by telephone during a two-hour period after each Monday’s live program determines who’s eliminated the rest of the way.

Anderson urged his friends and fans in the Brown County area especially to vote for him, but only if they think he deserves to advance against what he considers tough competition.

“I want them to vote because I earned it,” Anderson said.

Anderson said he continues to be impressed with the quality of the “Nashville Star” program.

“Some were concerned that the guitars weren’t the best, so they brought in two companies to make sure we had them,” Anderson said. “It’s good to see what we’re doing. It’s rare to have a family show like this on prime time. It’s just great to be part of it.”

Meanwhile, Anderson said he feels the support of his home town, and hopes Brown County residents will be watching tonight, and voting.