OFFSTAGE: John Rich a Star, Again, for OnStar

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

“You can put OnStar in your 1995 minivan?” That’s all John Rich needed to know from the OnStar people in the second half of Sunday night’s (May 8) Celebrity Apprentice. His team’s job was to make a TV commercial for the new aftermarket version of OnStar, the safety, navigation and communication system you can put in any car. Rich’s team was down to just him and Lil Jon. So while Lil Jon worked out the visuals, Rich sat down to hand write the script. But he had a little bit of writer’s block and some kind of sinus infection, so it didn’t come easy. “Is there a quiet place I can go instead of this booming-ass room, to write,” he yells. But he powers through it, and by the time they are ready to present their idea, Rich says he thinks they “absolutely nailed to the wall originality and creativity.” I disagree, because their idea was kind of dull. But an advertising copywriter he ain’t. (I would’ve focused less on the OnStar system and the soccer moms and more on the wide range of cars you can put it in now. Maybe even shown the easy-to-use search engine on the OnStar site. It took me less than a minute to find out you can get it on a 2001 Nissan Quest minivan but not a 2008 Ferrari 599 GTB.) I think Rich should have gone back to his original, simple question, “You can put OnStar in your 1995 minivan?” Then again, Rich’s team won again, so he did very well for himself and his charity. So far this season, Rich has been able to donate $695,000 to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. And Star Jones was fired. Which I guess makes her OffStar.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.