Deserving (Gavin) DeGraw

There’s one sure shot straight to a mother’s heart – be nice to her kid.

But Gavin DeGraw wasn’t just nice to the reporter’s kid. He walked into the cafeteria at the Benjamin Cosor Elementary School in Fallsburg last week with a wide smile and open arms.

He shook hands. He signed everything in sight.

He pulled a few dozen awestruck kids out of their shell, grabbing their hands in his and offering up the simple, “I’m Gavin, what’s your name?”

When I asked him later why he wanted to do something for his hometown, his face got serious.
A platinum-selling recording artist, he could have thrown out the standard, “well, I like to give back” answer that every PR flunkie has drilled into their star.

Instead, he looked me in the eyes and told the truth.

“It’s not such an impossible amount of work for me to meet some kids, take some pictures, to make them happy.”

He’s right.

It doesn’t take a lot to make kids happy.

Last week at Bethel Woods the guys from Maroon 5 walked across the parking lot behind the stage while a small group of teenage fans cheered from the fence.Lead singer Adam Levine raised his glass in their direction… and kept walking.

The kids almost fainted.

For a raised glass? Whoop-de-do.

I walked out of the concert still a fan of Maroon 5 music, but not necessarily a Maroon 5 fan.
I walked into the Benjamin Cosor cafeteria, however, a fan of Gavin DeGraw’s music and walked out a fan of Gavin DeGraw.

Because I could hear the warmth in his interactions with a group of kids – some simpering fans, some just dumbstruck with the idea that they were meeting a famous person.

What’s more, each child got the same chunk of time, the same mega-watt smile and power hand shake – whether or not they were there because they’d been designated a child “in need” of the backpacks and school supplies DeGraw wrangled through his connections with the Office Depot Foundation.

Even my kid, the reporter’s kid who was there because of a baby-sitting mix-up, got her time with a star who told me, “I just don’t feel like I’ve necessarily gotten too big for my britches.”

Crouching on the ground outside the school building with a 3-year-old who just an hour before had never heard of Gavin DeGraw, sticking his tongue out and making her laugh, he proved it.

And when my daughter, still wearing her way-too-big but newly signed Gavin DeGraw t-shirt asked to hear “that boy’s song,” I obliged by making a purchase of a few online.

After all, one good turn deserves another. And Gavin DeGraw has proven he’s the sort of hometown boy that deserves our support.

Have you “liked” Inside Out Motherhood on Facebook yet?


  1. Thank you so much for your post about Gavin. . . I’m glad you got to meet him, and he still holds your admiration! Tina


  1. […] Gavin DeGraw — A native son who opens on the regular for Billy Joel, has starred on Dancing With the […]

Speak Your Mind