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Keith Urban offered up plenty of caeer advice, encouragement and engaging stories as he took part in a special program for selected Nashville high school students at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, Thursday (Sept. 6). Students got the opportunity to ask Keith questions about songwriting, his career, musical influences and other topics. Around 200 students from four Nashville area schools were in attendance.
The program began with Keith fielding questions from museum editor Michael Gray. When asked about how he learned to play guitar, Keith had one revealing admission. "I wasn't very disciplined," he said with a laugh. "My fingers hurt and I didn't want to put in the work. I just didn't like the idea of lessons." At times, Keith would even duck out of the house on his bike to avoid the guitar instructor. But Keith's dad set him straight. "My dad said I would never learn if I kept skipping the lessons," he said. Keith also explained that listening to records helped him become more proficient on guitar. "All the songs I learned were primarily [American] country songs," Keith noted. "I really didn't have guitar influences. I just wanted to play the guitar and sing."
One student asked what advice he would impart for those who were interested in making music their career. Keith offered that collaborating with different people was "extremely beneficial," pointing out that he wished that he had received that advice when he first moved to Nashville. "I wish I had known more songwriters when I was first starting out," he said. "I just think there's so much to be gained from writing with other people. You just learn so much about putting a song together."
Keith also addressed the question of American Idol. It has been reported that Keith will be a judge on the show , though nothing has been finalized. One of the students couldn't help but ask Keith about all the Idol rumors. Keith jokingly called her “Barbara Walters,” which cracked up the room. “I would love to do it and hopefully that happens," he allowed, adding, “I did get to do a similar role in Australia for The Voice, and I really enjoyed it. The thing about those shows is that mentoring aspect; it’s all about passing it on."