Music was always part of Drew Angus’ life.
From Mary Ann Hall’s Music for Children, through musicals at Coleytown, Bedford and Staples (Class of 2007), to the bands he’s played in and the record label he ran at Hartwick College, Drew has immersed himself in sound.
But after college, he says, “I lost my musical focus.” He spent a year managing a YouTube viral artist. Ultimately, he realized, he wanted to be on stage — not behind the scenes.
In the past 2 years he’s played over 150 gigs. Drew does it all: concerts, weddings, bar and bat mitzvahs. In November he appeared at the FTC Warehouse (with, among others, Anders Osborne).
Drew also made the Top 10 of Boston’s “Community Auditions” TV show — a 4-decade-old forerunner of “American Idol.”
Speaking of which…
Last summer, Drew was invited to an “American Idol” audition in Philadelphia. He roared through 3 rounds of auditions — then was asked to return, to perform in front of real-live judges.
It was another all-day affair. But singing in front of Harry, JLo and Keith was amazing.
Drew’s 1st song was “I’m Ready.” Harry said he’s buddies with singer/ songwriter Anders Osborne.
The judges liked Drew’s voice. JLo asked for another tune. He quickly tuned his guitar out of double drop D — without a tuner. Impressed, Harry said, “You’ve got good ears, man!”
Drew played the 1st 2 verses of “Dock of the Bay.” Keith stopped him, and asked why he chose the song. JLo glared at Keith and said, “’cause he can sing!”
Drew got 3 “yeses,” and walked out — with a golden ticket to Hollywood!
“Being validated by 3 industry veterans and the producers was incredible,” Drew says.
“Idol” did not air Drew’s audition last week, when Philly was up. But he saw himself on TV, with his golden ticket.
“Reality TV is not just what you see on TV,” he notes. “There are a lot of amazing people who never get air time. Hopefully, you’ll see me in Hollywood next week!”
Winning “Idol” would be fantastic, Drew says. For now though, he’s taking it one performance at a time.
Tune in Wednesdays and Thursdays (Fox, 8 p.m.) to follow his journey.
(Drew Angus’ version of Jeff Buckley’s “Hallelujah” comes out next week on iTunes and Spotify. He’s donating proceeds from the sale and streaming of the track to the charity Little Kids Rock, which provides instruments and music education to underserved children across the country. Drew performs on February 2 at the Bitter End, and March 2 at Rockwood Music Hall.)