Evan Paul hosts Taste of Country Nights, On Demand, a weekly country music interview podcast that focuses on the music. Follow wherever podcasts are found, like Apple Podcasts and Spotify and leave a rating and review. ​​​​​​​​​​​This show is part of the Townsquare Media On Demand network.

Someone in the industry once told me that if someone gets far on a singing competition show, they can for sure sing. This is always the truth, and it is the best way to describe American Idol Season 19 winner, Chayce Beckham. Talk about a kind, humble and talented guy — Chayce is the real deal!

Not only did he play a couple songs for me, he was kind enough to hang for about 20 minutes and chat about life post-America Idol. I was asking him how Idol has changed over the years, as far as the prizes and money they dish out to the winners. I remember back in the Kelly Clarkson days, they would give them a $1 million recording contract instantly when they won, and sometimes a new car or truck. That is not the case anymore. I asked Chayce what the prize was for winning on Season 19, and we dive into it on Taste of Country Nights, On Demand Episode 37.

Chayce also talked about who influenced him the most when he was growing up. He is a classic country kind of guy, so he mentions Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, John Prine and Blaze Foley, among others. He hasn't gotten to meet Willie yet, but hopes to soon.

Another thing I thought was interesting about this interview is how Chayce was describing the genius of Lionel Richie, who was just inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame recently and who is one of the judges on American Idol. He was telling me how precise Lionel is when it comes to music and that a lot of the things Lionel was telling him about his singing, it would take him a little while to even understand what he was telling him.

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Chayce describes all of the American Idol judges as the real deal and all very nice and down to earth, and he spent time with each of them after the show and he felt good to be a part of a show with judges being so authentic. So much so, that Chayce and Luke Bryan are now friends and text one another a lot, and Chayce goes fishing on his property!

I had a lot of fun chatting with American Idol Season 19 winner Chayce Beckham, but I'm still stunned by what he told me about winning Idol. Not only did he not get a car or a truck, he didn't even get a trophy or a plaque with his name on it to show his grandkids 40 years from now.

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