When the second episode of Rising Star began Sunday night (June 29), all I could think of was that Brad Paisley didn't sound as cool as his fellow judges.
I mean, he is cool. Host Josh Groban even gave Paisley a "shout-out to your belt tonight" and compared him to the layers of an onion later in the show. But he just didn't seem that cool when host Groban introduced the panel of experts as "Luda, Kesha and Brad Paisley."
Why can't Paisley have a mononym like the others?
He could start going by just Brad or Pais or Paiz -- or some combination of all of those. Like Baizley. His full name is Brad Douglas Paisley. So maybe he could even do an initial thing. B.D.? Brad-D? Anything that's two syllables and has a lifelong-nickname ring to it.
Kesha has a full name -- Kesha Rose Sebert. Luda does, too. He was born Christopher Brian Bridges, then turned that mouthful into just Ludacris when he started his rap career and has since shortened it to simply Luda.
The reason I want Paisley to have a cool name is to reflect his ability to consistently come up with cool comments for the contestants.
On Sunday's show, he told one contestant, "I was puzzled throughout -- in a good way."
And he told another, "You can overcome all these things in your life, I believe. Everybody watching is inspired by you right now."
His other noteworthy remarks included, "You brought it. You have a presence. You're adorable," "Don't ever lose the vulnerability" and "It was amazing to watch you deal with the nerves."
And when Rye Davis performed Keith Whitley's "When You Say Nothing at All" and only made it to the 46-percent mark, Paisley left him with a pretty big glimmer hope.
"I felt like it was a little too pitchy," he told him. "But you sound a lot like Alan Jackson, which is great. Alan Jackson worked in the mailroom at TNN for a long time, and he would go on TV and sing. And if you look back at the tapes, he was kind of where you are. And then he became the Alan Jackson that we know. And you have that."
Paisley also engaged in some good-natured cattle-farmer jokes with Groban. Later in the show, he suggested a drinking game where every time Groban says the word "app," everyone at home should take a drink.