By John Benson
Having spent the past year touring incessantly, “American Idol” season 7 runner-up David Archuleta says he will never forget his memorable visit last spring to Northeast Ohio.
“Actually, I [appeared] at the [I-X] Indoor Amusement Park, and it was a lot of fun,” said Archuleta, calling from Rexburg, Idaho. “And we had a day off there, too. That was the first time I got to see Amish country. We saw the Wal-Mart there. It was cool to see how they had the buggy parking. I thought it was really neat.”
If Archuleta sounds like a kid, that’s because, well, in many ways he still is. Though he turns 19 in a few weeks, the Utah native is at an age when most of his peers are figuring out their class schedules and thinking about pursuing a career. For the pop singer, these decisions were pretty much decided for him when he ended up going the distance on the 2008 “American Idol,” where he came in second to David Cook.
What followed was the de rigueur whirlwind of press and touring in support of his self-titled gold-selling debut effort, which included singles “Crush,” “A Little Too Not Over You” and “Touch My Hand.” Granted, it’s time to work on his sophomore effort — Archuleta said he’s already written new material for the CD he hopes to have out in 2010 — but the singer decided to indulge his love of the holidays by releasing his debut seasonal album, “Christmas From the Heart.”
“A Christmas album is something I’ve always wanted to do,” Archuleta said. “But it’s something I never knew I’d be able to like this, to be able to have orchestrated tracks and have my own original arrangements. And Christmas music has always played a really big part with my family. It’s always been a fun holiday. Ever since I was little, we always used to go Christmas caroling and go visit hospitals and retirement homes and put on shows for them.
“So it’s always been really cool. It’s always been really fun memories to just look back on and just sing with my brothers and sisters and stuff. So now it’s weird to be able to do a Christmas album with those songs and to just get to perform them. I really feel like it’s meaningful music. To be able to do meaningful music and make an album with those kinds of songs, I’m just really grateful for that opportunity.”
Archuleta said his holiday tour, which comes to Cleveland’s Palace Theatre on Saturday, is designed specifically to entertain fans with his pop music in the first half, and Christmas-based tunes end the show.
If you go…
Who: David Archuleta
When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: Palace Theatre, 1615 Euclid Ave., Cleveland
Tickets: $10 to $40; call (216) 241-6000 or (866) 546-1353, or go to PlayhouseSquare.org
**Anyone going to this?
This is a short video of David from that day at the I-X Indoor Amusement Park meet and greet. I wonder why he hasn’t worn that white jacket again.. I like it.
video credit: chicagoarchie0000