The way Scotty McCreery talks about his first single -- "I Love You This Big" -- sounds like the way his early supporters discuss his rise to "American Idol" champ status. But listening to the Carolina country crooner discuss his vision for his debut album -- "Clear As Day" -- shows that 17-year-old has matured in the process, and he knows what he wants.
"When I figured we were doing this album, I was like, 'I want this album to be me. I want all these songs to have something about my life, something that I've been through, something that I've lived,'" McCreery tells Billboard.com. "I think we've done it on this album. Everything really speaks to me, to who I am as a person and what I've been through."
Watch the video track-by-track above (or read a transcript below) to hear what the season 10 "Idol" winner has to say about each song on his debut album, "Clear As Day," out today (Oct. 4).
1. "Out of Summertime"
"That was originally supposed to be the first single and then 'I Love You This Big' got switched around at the last minute. It's a nice, fun, summertime type song so we enjoyed recording this one."
2. "I Love You This Big"
"My baby. This is my first single so it's kind of like watching a child grow up as it went up on Billboard [charts], but it was a song I kind of fell in love with when I first heard it. It had a great melody and a great message to it, and it fit the 'Idol' moment."
3. "Clear As Day"
"This is one of my favorite songs on the album. This is one of those songs that's really relatable to a lot of people and a lot of people have been through what the song talks about. It really rips your heart out right at the end."
4. "The Trouble With Girls"
"Don't let the title fool you -- it's not talking about what's wrong with girls. It's really a sweet song about all the nice things about girls and how beautiful they are and respecting females."
5. "Water Tower Town"
"This is one that really speaks to my hometown -- Garner, North Carolina -- so it's special to me. It reflects a lot of the things I grew up with, and the water tower in my town was right across the railroad tracks from the baseball fields I grew up playing at, so it's a cool little imagery thing for me when I'm singing it."
6. "Walk In The Country"
"This is Keith Urban's song that he put on his album 'In The Ranch.' It was really cool to have someone like Keith Urban pitch this song to me that he's already recorded and he's done. It's become one of the band's favorites to perform live. That would be amazing if me and Keith could do it together. He's the one who wrote it. This is his song, I'm just singing it and having fun with it so it'd be amazing."
7. "Better Than That"
"This is one of the upbeat, fun ones on the album. I think it's my dad's favorite, actually. He's always listening to this one when he goes running and stuff. It's just a cool, cute, kind of summer song talking about all these things that you never thought anything could top, your love's better than that."
8. "Write My Number On Your Hand"
"To me, it had a Hawaiian feel and it had that different kind of feel that I was looking for to kind of add that mixture to the album."
9. "Dirty Dishes"
"This one passed the mama crying test. It's really special to me and my family since 'Idol' and since we left for Hollywood. We left but we hadn't really had a family dinner since then, sitting down at the table with mama cooking and all of us around the table, because we'd been so busy on the road. It really talks about that and the family getting together and mama thanking the Lord for things that sometimes you might get annoyed by, like noisy children slamming doors, but it's a cool way of looking at it, because it says noisy kids are happy kids and slamming doors means we live in a nice home."
10. "You Make That Look Good"
"This is kind of the rocker song on the album. Actually, Rhett Akins wrote this song and his son, Thomas, wrote 'Write My Number On Your Hand.'"
11. "Back On The Ground"
"This one speaks to a lot of what I've been through the last couple months and now, where I'm at now in my life. It's nice to slow down sometimes and get away from Hollywood and the big cities and kind of go back home, get your feet back on the ground, get your bearings straight, and remember where you came from."
12. "The Old King James"
"We were looking to put kind of a gospel or Christian song on the album to end it off, and we were thinking of putting a hymn or something like that. We hadn't found it yet and this was it. Immediately, it struck a chord with me."