OAKLAND – Scott MacIntyre walks up to you, extends his hand and immediately you begin to wonder, “Is there a little something extra going on here?”
And you certainly already know this part.
You see, Scott can’t … see, that is. Oh, he has about a two-percent field of vision, but all that means is that his world comes to him through the eye of a needle.
But maybe not this…
And that’s not all, much of 2007 he battled kidney disease which left him undergoing dialysis treatments until the wife of a Arizona State University professor donated one of her kidneys to him.
And even that isn’t the end of it. He has younger sister Katelyn – also visually impaired – has been diagnosed with kidney failure and that prognosis is ongoing.
All that would be enough to cope with if all you had to do was go out and sit on the front porch swing in the evenings. But not Scott. As you know by now, he’s part of the Top 10 American Idols on Tour this summer. He was No. 8 in the elmination process this past season, but he’s definitely No. 1 in enthusiasm for what is happening to and for him.
“This Tour is the experience of a lifetime for me,” Scott explained. “The dream of having my music, playing with my heart at all these stops before thousands of fans far, far outweighs the rigors of all the travel we are doing.
“Every night is the same routine, the same songs. But everyday I just can’t wait to do it all over again.”
Scott was talking before the AI Tour’s performance here on July 11th. Since then he’s been to San Jose, Salt Lake City, Los Angeles, Ontario and one week after Oakland he’s singing in San Diego.
“For me, this is all about connecting with the fans,” he said, “It’s the first time they’ve heard the show … unless, of course, they’ve tried to watch it on YouTube.”
Then Scott started talking about a segment of the Top 10 that probably includes himself.
“This (the Tour) is totally different than the show. There are certain people who are standing out who didn’t on the show. There is definitely a certain level of energy here that wasn’t present on the show. Here you can get comfortable and get into the zone. On the show, it was like, ‘OK, five-four-three-two-one, you’re on!’ And there was nothing you could then except open your mouth and sing for a minute. For some people that throws them for a huge loop when you are out there trying to do something that is that expressive.”
Aside from playing for about 10,000 fans on a 50-city AI Tour this summer, Scott has packed a lot more into his 24 years.
He started playing the piano at age three, he was admitted to ASU at age 14, he’s been to the White House on an invite from Laura Bush, he has his ASU degree and a masters degree from the University of London (yes, England) and he’s produced and recorded six CDs. Plus he plays the guitar, drums, percussion and bass in addition the piano.
“The big difference now is that you actually get to sing your music to the crowd. It’s not like a minute and it’s over. We’re on a time schedule, but there is some flexibility.”
The best thing about Scott? His enthusiasm for life. For what he is doing. And his understated humility. He doesn’t go around comparing himself to Stevie Wonder or Ray Charles. He’s just Scott MacIntyre. He evens stops during the AI Tour show and makes light of his disability.
“My favorite moment is after the shows when the bus is surrounded by fans. I’m enjoying every moment of this experience. I’m not taking any of it for granted.”
NOTE: If you want to read more about Scott and/or find ways to purchase his CDs, go to: