‘Catch of the Day’ – Josh Gracin – “Nothin’ Like Us” [AUDIO]
Today we feature an artist who first came to our attention as a contestant on season 2 of American Idol, where he finished fourth, coming in behind a heated competition between Clay Aiken and eventual winner Ruben Studdard. He showed greater success after the program with his self-titled debut album outselling both Aiken's and Studdard's initial efforts.
Josh Gracin knew during high school where he wanted he future to lead him: Nashville. Born and raised in Westland, Michigan, the only boy of 5 children, Gracin grew up listening to classic rock, but at age 11 his favorite radio station switched formats, and Josh was introduced to country music. He found himself immediately drawn to artists like George Strait, Garth Brooks and Randy Travis. His singing debut was in an eighth grade talent show, singing Brooks' "Standing Outside The Fire". Gracin won over the audience and took first place.
During his sophomore year in high school, Gracin auditioned for the Fairline Youth Pops Orchestra, the only male to try-out. He would spend the remainder of his high school years traveling the state of Michigan, performing at state and county fairs, festival and pageants. At age 16, he stepped onto the stage of the Grand Ole Opry for the first time, performing in a national contest, which would lead to him recording a demo cd in Nashville soon after. After high school, Josh attended Western Michigan University for a few years before joining the Marine Corps, where he worked as a supply clerk.
After leaving the Marines, Gracin dedicated himself full-time to his music career. In 2003, he auditioned for season 2 of American Idol, finishing as the highest ranked country artist that season. His self-titled debut album, released in June of 2004, actually outsold the first album sales of all other contestants that season, including the top two finishers, Clay Aiken and season winner Ruben Studdard. The album featured 3 top-5 hits, including the #1 single "Nothin' To Lose", which was certified gold, as was the album. His second album, 2008's We Weren't Crazy, featured 5 singles, but only the title track cracked the top-10.
Following the release of We Weren't Crazy, Gracing began having problems with his record label Lyric Street, with whom he had signed in 2004 after completing Idol. He would independently release the single "Enough" through his Myspace page in 2009, before signing with Average Joes Entertainment in 2010. He release one album with Average Joe's, 2011's Redemption, which would feature 6 singles, none of which cracked the top-50 on the Country Singles chart. Gracin would part ways with the label after the album, signing with Private Label Studios in 2013.
After personal issues kept Gracin out of the studio for a couple years, while he put his life back together, Josh re-entered the studio in 2016 and emerged with a brand new EP, Nothin' Like Us Part 1, which was released just last month, and we have the title track in our spotlight today. Josh Gracin and "Nothin' Like Us" is today's Catch of the Day, new music you haven't heard, but you'll want to hear it again.