HC Skidmore Exclusive: Aaron Carter On Being Normal, His Career, And His New Organic Sound

On a bitter cold Thursday night, Saratoga Springs was graced with the presence of a living legend when Putnam Den, easily one of Saratoga’s best venues for live music, hosted Aaron Carter. Skidmore girls, boys, and townies alike seemed eager to come out in full force, despite the cold, in the hopes of seeing a teenage heartthrob up close, and maybe even hearing “I Want Candy” live.

Unsurprisingly, the show was even better than expected. Aaron brought girls on stage to sing “I Want Candy” with him, and he treated us to a great mix of the classics and his new music, including a few acoustic songs. Sitting on a barstool in the center of the stage with nothing more than his guitar, it was clear to see how far Aaron has come and how hard he’s worked on his new music. It was refreshing and exciting to watch him do what he loves and do it well.

After the show, two of my friends, Daniel Kapp and Madeleine Welsch, and I were lucky enough to get the chance to talk to Aaron. He took us backstage and we all settled down like old friends. Aaron was personable and genuine, happy to be talking to us and excited to be in the process of re-launching his career.

“It’s a real side of me,” Aaron told us, when we asked him about the small acoustic set that had taken up the middle portion of his show and how he’s working to reestablish his career. “I’ve been working really hard, even before anything came of it. The difference now is I have a loyal fan-base that stuck with me.”

Aaron started touring again back in February of 2012, after a booking agent spotted him during a stint on the Off Broadway show The Fantasticks, (he sang a chorus for us on the spot!) and has been touring pretty much nonstop since then. He works tirelessly and without complaint, only saying, “it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I did over 500 performances with them. Ever since then, I’ve just been working hard with my fans, showing them who I am today.”

Who Aaron is today is a dedicated, genuine, and outgoing star. He spoke the same way he preformed – with ease and with confidence, happy and grateful to be in this position. “I’m not really trying to make it a priority to step away from anything that I have done,” he said, “I’m just trying to take the things that I’ve learned and put them into my music. The stuff that I do on the guitar, the new stuff… the stuff that I really enjoy now is the really organic side of who I am. If I can find a way to portray that in my music, transcending from the past as well, is really important. Of course I love “Aaron’s Party,” but you’ve got to understand. I’ve done it thousands of times. I’ve literally done thousands of shows.”

It was almost unbelievable to hear Aaron talk about his past achievements. “I started when I was six years old. By the time I was seven my album was done. By the time I was ten, I already sold ten million records.” There are no humble beginnings here, yet Aaron himself is an incredibly humble person. Even if he does have a Swarovski crystal jacket gifted to him by none other than Michael Jackson.

“Trying to be normal,” he told us, is the hardest part of being in the limelight. But sitting around in the back of Putnam Den with him, his girlfriend and dancer Lee Karis, and his manager, it’s hard to imagine Aaron Carter as anything but normal. “It’s crazy. No one ever thought that I would be doing this again. It’s very empowering. Everything that I’m getting back now I’m building on my own.”

 

HC Skidmore's Alli Burdick singing "I Want Candy" on stage with Aaron.

 

HC Skidmore's CC Ileana Paules-Bronet (blue and yellow striped shirt) with her friends and Aaron after seeing The Fantasticks in 2012.

 

HC Skidmore's Ruby Siegel (right) with Aaron after his show in Saratoga!

 

And finally, yours truly, HC Skidmore's Gwen Plummer (gray shirt) with Daniel, Madeleine, and Aaron Carter after this interview.