OFFSTAGE: Tim McGraw Covers “This Little Light of Mine”

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

Granted, Tim McGraw was only 5, and his stage was a Pentecostal church in Louisiana. But I’ll bet he did a great job on the gospel song “This Little Light of Mine” when he sang it. In People magazine’s special country music issue, he recalled the first time he ever performed in public. “I was probably 5 years old, and I sang right into the mic, a cappella,” he said. That would have been around 1972, and I so wish the Internet had been invented so we could all see a glimpse of McGraw’s first gig. The other songs he says he loves to cover, still, are “Little Jeannie” and “Who Can It Be Now?” And the song currently stuck in his head? Alicia Keys’ “Girl on Fire.” He said, “I find myself walking through the house and singing, ’This girl is on fiiirrreee … !’ Over and over again. That’s the only line I know, but I look good singing it.”

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