With the first episode of “Nashville Star” behind him, Coffey Anderson’s fans might think that some of the anxiety of performing for millions of people on national television would be diminished going into Week 2.
No such luck.
“That’s that the case at all,” the Bangs native said Friday as he prepared for Monday night’s show. “It’s a new pressure with all that’s going on. For one thing, this show is going to be live. The first one was taped. This is what it is; it’s live, it’s on. That’s a little added pressure. But I thrive on playing live. That’s what I normally do. But this is music. You don’t know what can happen. There’s a lot of variables, but I love it.”
The pressure of doing well will remain every week, as viewers will vote for the favorite performers to advance to the next week’s show. The series will run 12 weeks, with programs airing in Texas at 8 p.m. Mondays on NBC. The winner will receive a recording contract with Warner Brothers, and new pickup truck and an appearance at the Summer Olympics in China.
Anderson said in response to the judges’ comments from last Monday, he plans to “pull it back” a bit this time, choosing a song that will not be quite as up-tempo as his rendition of “Drift Away” on the premiere show.
Anderson, a Bangs High School and Howard Payne University graduate, said the supportive tone of the show’s judges has been beneficial to the performers.
“It helps enormously,” Anderson said. “As performers, we always hear the negative side. Other programs sometimes show auditions that are embarrassing. But that’s not the case here. It’s even how it is with the producers and the make-up people. They want us to do our best. The people doing the performers’ hair tell us they want us to look our best. They want you to do your best. It’s a great team feeling.”
Anderson continues to be impressed with the talent level of his fellow contestants.
“When you take the top 50 acts, and narrow it down to 12, you get the cream of the cream,” Anderson said. “I’ve seen some of the people who didn’t make it, and they are amazing.”
Even though the contestants are becoming well-known names as a result of their exposure on national television, the producers of “Nashville Star” aren’t giving them the “star” treatment. Anderson said the performers haven’t been making appearances in Nashville or enjoying similar perks that viewers might think are common to television celebrities.
“We focus,” Anderson said. “We sleep. We rehearse. We eat. We rehearse. It’s all about the performance. Everybody here is focused on why we are here.”
Anderson urged all his fans in the Brown County area to call in and vote for him after the show airs Monday night.
“Quote me on that,” Anderson said. “Ask people to call in and vote. And tell my dad hello.”
He is the son of Stanley Anderson of Bangs and the late Gloria Anderson.