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Gavin DeGraw's Brother A Rocker, Too

Of the Oakland Press

» See more SOUND CHECK

Joey DeGraw's younger brother, Gavin, is the one with the hit singles and platinum albums. But there's no sibling rivalry between the New York-bred siblings.

"Y'know, I started to sing only because I wrote songs, and my brother started to write songs because he sang," the older DeGraw, 35, explains. "My father always says to us, 'Isn't it funny, at the end of the day what's the difference -- you're both up on stage, singing songs that you wrote.

"I think I was definitely the driving force behind making (Gavin) write songs, but he influenced me, also. I'm not as extroverted as him as far as wanting to sing in front of people. So he helped me in that regard, I would say."

Joey DeGraw, in fact, says he has entirely different, and more modest goals and expectations for his career. With his second album, "Say Something Strong," due out June 9 -- featuring guest performances by his brother, Joss Stone, Mountain's Leslie West and Spin Doctors' Chris Barron -- DeGraw says being a star is a secondary concern to being an artist.

"I'm not trying to be on MTV. That never was a goal of mine," he says. "I just want a draw in every city. I have a decent draw; I just have to keep building on it.

"And that's what it's about for me -- being able to be on the road and play these songs and keep writing them. I'm not trying to pull the wool over anyone's eyes. I just want to get out and play."

Joey DeGraw performs with Tony Lucca at 8 p.m. Monday (May 11) at AJ's Music Cafe, 240 W. Nine Mile Road, Ferndale. Admission is $5. Call (248) 399-3946 or visit www.ajsmusiccafe.com.

Web Site: www.ajsmusiccafe.com

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