One of country music’s up-and-coming stars, Bucky Covington defied all odds and realized the American dream when he was thrust to national prominence as a finalist on American Idol. This exposure led to a major recording contract, a very successful debut album which spawned three top ten hits, and an enthusiastic following which continues to grow thanks in large part to extensive touring and a dynamic and energetic live show. This tall and lanky North Carolinian with the smoky voice, immense talent and ever-humble personality seems poised for a long and successful career in country music.
Origins and Early Musical Successes
Born with his identical twin brother, Rocky, on November 8, 1977 in Rockingham, North Carolina, Bucky Covington and Rocky were raised in nearby Laurinburg by their mother, Deborah, and their stepfather. Bucky’s biological father, Gene Covington, owned an auto body repair shop, where Bucky eventually began working. He attended Scotland High School in Laurinburg and graduated in 1996. From rock to country, music always played a big part in the Covington household, and Bucky honed his singing skills early on with the help of a karaoke machine. Growing up, his favorite country singers included George Strait, Travis Tritt and Tim McGraw.
Inspired by an album he heard by Canadian singer-guitarist, Jeff Healey, Covington acquired his first guitar when he was 18, and he taught himself how to play. Over the next few years he performed with a number of different rock and Southern rock bands. His most successful band, Southern Country, packed the night clubs and honky tonks in the area and made him something of a local hero.
American Idol Finalist
In 2005, Bucky contemplated a move to Nashville to try his luck as a singer. His sister-in-law encouraged him to tryout for American Idol, which was entering its fifth season. Local auditions were being held all over the country, so Bucky and Rocky auditioned in Greensboro, North Carolina, and Bucky was chosen to appear with the final twelve in Hollywood. He eventually made it into the final eight before being voted off.
The national exposure from American Idol resulted in a deluge of interest from managers and producers, but it was a call from Sawyer Brown singer, Mark Miller, that really peaked his interest. Unlike the other suitors who appeared more interested in Covington’s earnings potential because of the American Idol exposure, Miller focused on the kind of music Covington wanted to make, which led to a musical partnership between the two singers.
Debut Album Hits No. 1
In 2006, Covington signed his first major recording contract with Buena Vista Music Group’s country label, Lyric Street Records. He went into the studio with Miller as his producer to begin recording tracks for his debut album, Bucky Covington. To coincide with the premier of American Idol’s sixth season, Lyric Street released Covington’s first single, “A Different World,” on January 16, 2007, four months prior to the album’s April 17 release date. The single climbed to No. 6 on Billboard’s country chart and established him as a legitimate young face on the country scene.
When the album, Bucky Covington, was released to positive reviews, it debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart with over 61,000 copies sold. It was the highest opening week for a debut album since Billy Ray Cyrus’ 1992 debut, Some Gave All. Bucky Covington also debuted at No. 4 on Billboard’s Top 200 all-genre chart. Two more top ten singles followed from the album, including “It’s Good to Be Us” (No. 11) and “I’ll Walk” (No. 10).
Covington’s Sophomore Album I’m Alright
In preparation for the 2010 release of Covington’s second album, I’m Alright, Lyric Street released his fourth single, “I Want My Life Back,” in April, 2009. The song peaked at No. 32. In early October 2009, the album’s second single, a cover of the Nickelback hit, “Gotta Be Somebody,” was released to country radio. The single was supported by a live performance video of the song. Among Covington’s bandmates appearing in the video are his brother, Rocky, and former Black Crowes lead guitarist, Jeff Cease, who was with the Crowes during their Shake Your Money Maker heyday.
Most Popular Bucky Covington Songs
- “A Different World”
- “I’ll Walk”
- “It’s Good to Be Us”
- “I Want My Life Back”
- “Gotta Be Somebody”
Bucky Covington Discography
- Bucky Covington
- Live From Rockingham
- I’m Alright