Gavin DeGraw’s just-released third album, “Free,” is a markedly different effort than its two predecessors — a more stripped down and rootsy set than 2003’s platinum “Chariot” and 2008’s “Gavin DeGraw.”
But when he steps on stage as part of Big Dance Saturday for this weekend’s NCAA Final Four Weekend concert series, the New York singer and songwriter promises that he plans to do nothing but please those who will troop to the Detroit Riverfront to see him.
“I’m gonna play to the audience,” says DeGraw, 32, who also performed at the 2005 Final Four in St. Louis. “I’ll mix up some of this stuff (from the new album) with the rock-type stuff for that show. It’ll be a little different from what I’m gonna do at my other gigs.”
But don’t bother asking DeGraw — best known for his hit “I Don’t Want to Be” — about predictions for this weekend’s tournament action.
“Man, I haven’t watched a basketball game proper in probably three years — I think I went to a (New York) Knicks game, but not since then,” he notes. “I used to be a massive Duke fan when I was a kid, but I just haven’t had the time to pay attention the past few years.
“The basketball’s cool, but I’m just there to play music, man.”
Gavin DeGraw performs at 1:30 p.m. Saturday (April 4) on the national stage at Big Dance Saturday on the Detroit Riverfront by the GM Renaissance Center. Admission is free. Visit www. NCAA.com/finalfour.