Gavin DeGraw

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Gavin DeGraw

Gavin DeGraw in March 2012
Background information
Birth nameGavin Shane DeGraw
Born(1977-02-04) February 4, 1977 (age 35)
South Fallsburg, New York, United States
GenresBlue-eyed soul, pop rock, rock
OccupationsMusician and singer-songwriter
InstrumentsVocals, piano, guitar
Years active2000–Present
LabelsRCA Records
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Gavin DeGraw

Gavin DeGraw in March 2012
Background information
Birth nameGavin Shane DeGraw
Born(1977-02-04) February 4, 1977 (age 35)
South Fallsburg, New York, United States
GenresBlue-eyed soul, pop rock, rock
OccupationsMusician and singer-songwriter
InstrumentsVocals, piano, guitar
Years active2000–Present
LabelsRCA Records

Gavin Shane DeGraw (born February 4, 1977) is an American musician and singer-songwriter. He is known for his songs "Chariot", "Follow Through", "I Don't Want to Be" (which has been featured as the theme song for the television drama series, One Tree Hill since 2003), "In Love with a Girl", and "Not Over You".


Early life

DeGraw grew up in the Catskills in South Fallsburg, New York.[1] His mother, Lynne (née Krieger), was a detox specialist, and his father, Wayne DeGraw, was a prison guard;[2] he referenced his father and mother's occupation in the song "I Don't Want to Be".[3] His father is of Irish descent and his mother's family was of Russian ancestry.[4] DeGraw began singing and playing piano at the age of eight. He also has two siblings, both older, named Neeka and Joey (born August 1973). It was at his brother's advice that he began writing his own songs.[5] Joey DeGraw is a musician as well, currently touring to promote his own music.[6]


DeGraw rose to fame in 2003 when "I Don't Want to Be" was chosen as the theme song for teen drama One Tree Hill.[7] The song has also been performed on American Idol[8] and Idol Sweden[9] by various contestants during different seasons.

DeGraw released his debut album, Chariot on July 22, 2003 under J Records.[10] Chariot was recorded at Los Angeles' music studios, Sunset Sound and produced by Mark Endert.[1] Chariot sold over a million copies and earned platinum certification.[11] The album also featured three of DeGraw's singles: "I Don’t Want To Be", "Follow Through" and "Chariot".[11] He then went on to release an acoustic version of the album called Chariot Stripped in 2004. Chariot Stripped contains a cover version of Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come".[12]

DeGraw performing in Georgia, 2005

DeGraw's second album, self-titled Gavin DeGraw was released on May 6, 2008.[10] The first single, "In Love with a Girl" was released on February 12, 2008. The second U.S. single "Cheated On Me" was released in the US on September 30, 2008. This was followed by the Live From Soho album, released on Nov 7 2008, featuring mostly tracks from Gavin DeGraw.[13] Gavin DeGraw debuted at No. 1 on the digital sales chart and ranked at No. 7 on Billboard’s Top 200 album chart.[11]

Gavin Degraw's third album, Free was released March 31, 2009.[14] DeGraw made Free in less than two weeks at the Brooklyn studio of his producer Camus Celli. DeGraw included some songs on the album that he wrote very early in his career and that have evolved over time, songs such as "Dancing Shoes" and "Glass".[1] The debut single from the album, "Stay", was released on March 11, 2009.[15] FREE has been described as "recorded versions of his live favourites".[11]

DeGraw's fourth, and most recent album, Sweeter was set to release on August 9, 2011 but got pushed back to September 20, 2011.[16] The album features many tracks co-written with other artists. The first single "Not Over You" was released on iTunes in June.[17] The track was co-written and produced by Ryan Tedder and was said to be inspired by Kyle Craig. "Not Over You" is his first song to reach the top spot on the Adult Pop Songs.[18] Sweeter contains collaborations from producers including Butch Walker, Eric Rosse, and Ron Aniello; alongside another co-written title track, "Sweeter" with Andrew Frampton. The album was recorded in many locations including Blackbird Studios in Nashville, Walker’s Space in Venice and the Henson Recording Studios.[11]

Sweeter is DeGraw's first album released under RCA Records, all three of his previous albums were released under J Records. DeGraw went on to release an acoustic album based mostly on songs from Sweeter. The iTunes Session album features seven tracks and a 30 minute interview.[19]


Alongside DeGraw's musical career he has also performed on multiple TV shows and his songs can be heard across TV and film.

TV appearances

In Charlotte, 2012

DeGraw made his first TV appearance on Real Magic TV. He then went on to appear on: The Sharon Osbourne Show, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, American Dreams, Total Request Live and Rove Live. During Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2004, DeGraw is credited as a performer. After this, he was seen on What I Like About You alongside Dutch TV shows Barend & Van Dorp and Clement Behrendt Kjersgaard. DeGraw performed "I Don't Want to Be" during the 2005 Radio Music Awards. He was also a musical guest on The VIP, Jensen!, New York 360º and Entertainment Tonight. DeGraw has appeared on multiple episodes of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, the Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Live! with Kelly, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and Last Call with Carson Daly, performing tracks from whichever album he was promoting. DeGraw is credited as a presenter for the 2011 American Music Awards and can mostly be seen presenting footage from backstage. Recently he appeared during an episode of Conan; the episode was aired on January 9, 2012.[6]

During the final episode of the TV show One Tree Hill, broadcast on April 4th 2012, Degraw performed on the show's self titled episode ("One Tree Hill") following his heavy connection with One Tree Hill throughout its nine seasons. DeGraw performed three songs during the show, all shown from the show's nightclub, Tric. He performed Belief (from the album Chariot), I Don't Want to Be (the One Tree Hill theme) and Soldier. [20] [21]

DeGraw was a contestant on ABC's season 14 of Dancing With the Stars which premiered on Monday March 19, 2012. DeGraw and his partner Karina Smirnoff were eliminated from the competition during week 5, following a Dance Duel with cast-mate Jaleel White and his partner Kym Johnson. [22]

Soundtrack credits

DeGraw's songs have been played on twelve different titles across both TV and film.

"Follow Through" was part of the soundtrack for 2004 film Laws of Attraction and an episode of Scrubs called My Self-Examination, aired on 27 April 2004. The song has also been featured on One Tree Hill and on British and Italian TV advertisements for Carte D'or.[6]

"Chariot" features as an uncredited part of the soundtrack for the American-Canadian TV series Dead Like Me. The song features in a 2004 episode called Always and is portrayed by DeGraw. DeGraw plays a non-recurring small role as street singer, Pete Anderson. The song also features on the TV series Boston Legal in a 2006 episode named Helping Hands, it is played during Denise and Daniel's dinner. The song can also be heard during a 2007 episode of Cold Case called Knuckle Up.[6]

His song "We Belong Together" was also featured in the 2006 film Tristan and Isolde.[23]

DeGraw has performed a cover of Smokey Robinson's love ballad, "The Tracks of My Tears", which is played during Chaos Theory, an episode of The Cleaner aired on August 5 2008.[6]

During a Christmas special of TV series House called "Joy to the World", a cover of The Christmas Song performed by DeGraw was played.[6]

TV dance competition and reality show So You Think You Can Dance utilised three of DeGraw's tracks across four shows and also features a cover performed by DeGraw. "Belief", "More Than Anyone" and "We Belong Together" are used as background tracks across the 2006, 2008 and 2009 series respectively. During the first part of the 2007 finale, a cover of "We Are the Champions", performed by DeGraw, is used.[6]

DeGraw's songs are contained in the soundtracks of eleven episodes of One Tree Hill. Throughout he is uncredited. However, tracks such as "Belief", "More Than Anyone", "Chariot", "We Belong Together" and "Jealous Guy" all feature in the show. During the second season of the show, an unreleased live version of "Chariot" is played during the episode "Something I Can Never Have".[6] He also played his song Chariot in season 3 in Karen's cafe which in the seen featured Nathan and Hayley. During a special of the TV show The Bachelor called The Bachelor: Jason & Molly's Wedding, DeGraw's song "Follow Through" is played.[6]

Acting credits

He has appeared in an on-screen role in three One Tree Hill episodes. His first appearance was in 2004, during You Gotta Go There to Come Back; he was seen singing "I Don't Want to Be" and "Chariot" at Karen's Cafe. His second appearance was at the beginning of 2008 episode, What Comes After the Blues where he was seen singing "I Don't Want to Be" with Jackson Brundage and performs in the series final episode.[6]


DeGraw has released a number of music videos as well, including "I Don't Want to Be", "Follow Through" and "Chariot". The latter was directed by Zach Braff, who also directed music videos for Joshua Radin.[6]

DeGraw's song "More Than Anyone" was selected by fans of One Tree Hill through a Cingular Wireless contest as the first wedding dance song for Nathan & Haley in the 3rd season finale "The Show Must Go On."[24]

At the Des Moines Arts Festival on 27 June 2009

He and his brother opened The National Underground in December 2007, a New York City music venue that is a roots rock Americana music bar located in Manhattan's Lower East Side, at 159 East Houston Street between Allen Street and Eldridge Street.[25] The venue offers music, food, and drink.[26][27][28] The idea for the venue came about because the brothers wanted a place where they could hang out on a regular basis, and where other musicians could come in and listen and learn.[29] "We were picky about the quality of musicians that played there," Gavin DeGraw says. "We wanted a place where the players were so good, other musicians were like, 'Wow! I really respect what they're doing.'"[30]

Personal life

On August 8, 2011, DeGraw was hospitalized after being assaulted by several people in New York City. Police said a group of men attacked DeGraw early Sunday morning at 6th Street and First Avenue in the East Village, near The National Underground. He suffered a broken nose, a concussion, two black eyes and lacerations to his face. Only minutes after the attack, DeGraw was then struck by a taxi. He was admitted to Manhattan's Bellevue Hospital Center for treatment. He had to cancel his scheduled August 9 performance at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, located in Saratoga, New York.[31]

DeGraw says his family "motivated me to continue to pursue music and pursue passion versus just a job" during the interview attached to his iTunes session. He also says that he "didn't necessarily want to learn to play the piano [at a young age]".

DeGraw has said that his ultimate goal is "to leave this world a better person, and for me to not be the only one who knows it."[6]

Band members


  • Billy Norris – guitar, background vocals (since 2009)
  • Ian O'Neill – drums, background vocals (since 2011)
  • James Cruz- Bass (Started midway through summer tour of 2012)
  • Jimmy Wallace – keyboards, acoustic guitar, vocals (2007–2008, since 2011)


  • Johnny "Tsunami" Andrews – guitar, background vocals
  • Joey DeGraw – guitar, background vocals
  • Brian Dennis – guitar, background vocals
  • Matt Flynn – drums
  • Jose Barrera – Guitar and musical composition
  • Joey "Coach" Hanna – drums, background vocals
  • Rodney Howard – drums
  • Whynot Jansveld – bass, background vocals
  • Alvin Moody – bass, background vocals
  • Casey Twist – bass, background vocals
  • Tony Tino - Bass
  • Ben Mars- Bass



TitleAlbum detailsPeak chart positions[32][33]Certifications
(sales thresholds)
  • Release date: July 22, 2003
  • Label: J
Gavin DeGraw
  • Release date: May 6, 2008
  • Label: J
  • Release date: March 31, 2009
  • Label: J
  • Release date: September 20, 2011
  • Label: RCA


TitleAlbum detailsPeak chart positions[35]
iTunes: Live from Soho
  • Release date: 2008

Other albums

  • 2001: Gavin Live


YearTitleChart positions[32][33]Certifications
(sales thresholds)
2004"I Don't Want to Be"10912725193013615
"Follow Through"11122331312
2006"Just Friends"26
2008"In Love with a Girl"24510322273Gavin DeGraw
"She Holds a Key"29
"Cheated on Me"30
2009"I Have You to Thank"
"Dancing Shoes"
2011"Not Over You"1819233781312
2012"Soldier" (promo single)5913

Awards and nominations

2005Billboard Music Award nomination for Top Soundtrack Single of the Year ("I Don't Want to Be")
2005Radio Music Award nomination for Song of the Year/Mainstream Top 40 Radio ("I Don't Want to Be")

See also


  1. ^ a b c "Gavin DeGraw Biography". Gavin DeGraw US. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  2. ^ "More Than a Memory - The Official Gavin DeGraw fan site: Articles & Interviews". 2005-04-29. Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  3. ^ "I Don't Want To Be Lyrics". Lyrics On Demand. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  4. ^ Staff (February 3, 2005). "Gavin DeGraw Speaks Out on Life and Music – His 'I Don’t Want To Be' Is the Theme Song for the Teen Soap 'One Tree Hill'. Associated Press (via MSNBC). Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  5. ^ "Gavin DeGraw". Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Gavin DeGraw IMDB page". IMDB. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  7. ^ "One Tree Hill IMDB page". IMDB. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  8. ^ "'American Idol' Needs To Retire 'I Don't Want To Be,' Whitney Houston And Heart". MTV Website. MTV. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  9. ^ "YouTube Video: Guy singing I Don't Want To Be in Idol 2009". YouTube. Google. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  10. ^ a b "Amazon: Chariot Gavin DeGraw | Format: Audio CD". Amazon Retail. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  11. ^ a b c d e "Gavin DeGraw Official Bio". Gavin DeGraw Official Website. Retrieved 28 January 2012. 
  12. ^ "Amazon: Chariot Stripped (Bonus CD) Gavin DeGraw | Format: Audio CD". Amazon Retail. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  13. ^ "Gavin DeGraw Discography". Gavin DeGraw Website. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  14. ^ "Amazon: FREE Gavin DeGraw | Format: Audio CD". Amazon Retail. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  15. ^ "iTunes Single - Stay". iTunes. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  16. ^ "Gavin DeGraw Blog". Gavin DeGraw Blog. Gavin DeGraw. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  17. ^ "Gavin DeGraw Website - Not Over You Release". Gavin DeGraw Website. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  18. ^ Trust, Gary (26 January 2012). "Weekly Chart Notes: Adele, Kelly Clarkson, Gavin DeGraw". Billboard. Retrieved 28 January 2012. 
  19. ^ "iTunes Session Gavin DeGraw". iTunes. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  20. ^ " - Dancing with the Stars - Dancing with the Stars 2012 Cast Announcement - Season 14". Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  21. ^ Tree Hill 9.13 Songs "One Tree Hill Music". CW. Tree Hill 9.13 Songs. Retrieved 2012-06-16. 
  22. ^ 04/18/2012 (2012-04-18). "'Dancing with the Stars' ('DWTS') 2012: Gavin DeGraw Booted After Showdown | Video - ABC News". Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  23. ^ "Gavin Degraw Discography". Gavin DeGraw. Retrieved 25 January 2012. 
  24. ^ "Tree Hill Memories: 322 THE SHOW MUST GO ON". Tree Hill Memories. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  25. ^ "About Us". The National Underground Official website. Accessed October 5, 2010. 
  26. ^ Carlson, Erin (May 8, 2008). "Gavin DeGraw Doesn't Wanna Be Another Singer-Songwriter". The Decatur Daily.,11132. 
  27. ^ Friedman, Roger (March 6, 2008). "Patrick Swayze Slammed by National Enquirer". Fox News.,2933,335432,00.html. 
  28. ^ "Soul of the City: New York City". Glide Magazine. August 29, 2008. 
  29. ^ Adams, Patty (July 27, 2008). "Six Seconds with: Gavin DeGraw". New York Post. 
  30. ^ Tomcho, Sandy (August 15, 2008). "Gavin DeGraw Performs at Monticello Gaming & Raceway". Times Herald-Record. 
  31. ^ "Gavin DeGraw released from hospital after attack, doesn’t remember much". The Washington Post. 10 August 2011. Retrieved 21 September 2011. 
  32. ^ a b Gavin DeGraw. Billboard
  33. ^ a b "Gavin Degraw – Music Charts". Retrieved 2011-11-02. 
  34. ^ a b c "Gavin Degraw RIAA album certifications". RIAA. Retrieved 2011-10-02. 
  35. ^ "iTunes Live from Soho – Gavin DeGraw". AllMusic. Retrieved 2011-11-02. 
  36. ^ a b "Gavin DeGraw: Timeline". Rock On The Net. 
  37. ^ "RIANZ". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 2010-08-07. 
  38. ^ "". 2011-12-31. Retrieved 2012-05-09. 

External links