July 24, 2009 / 3:52 AM / 9 years ago

Keith Urban goes with instinct on digital release

DETROIT (Billboard) - Keith Urban’s contribution to the iTunes Originals series features interview segments and new, live-in-studio recordings of six songs — including three from his latest album, the chart-topping “Defying Gravity.”

On the just-released digital set, Urban treats his fans to fresh renditions of “Defying Gravity’s” second single, “Kiss a Girl,” its current single, “Only You Can Love Me This Way,” and the track “Til Summer Comes Around.”

“There was a particular clarity that I had with who I am and what I wanted to say and what kind of music I like making,” he told Billboard.com. “On this record I didn’t do a lot of second-guessing. I think I might have done a lot of second-guessing in the past, and with this record I just operated much more from instinct. I just kept everything spontaneous, and I think it is a much stronger record because of that approach.”

The rest of the iTunes Originals album offers a career overview spanning the New Zealand-born, Australia-raised country star’s recording career. It features new renditions of “Who Wouldn’t Want to Be Me,” “Days Go By” and “Tonight I Wanna Cry,” as well as the original album versions of “But for the Grace of God,” “You’ll Think of Me,” “Making Memories of Us,” “Raise the Barn” and “Defying Gravity’s” first single, “Sweet Thing.”

The collection mixes the songs with a dozen interview segments, in which Urban talks about how he got started, his first Grammy Award and the pressure of following up successful albums.

“I feel touched when I see people singing along with the songs and you just see the love, the want and the joy and the fact that they’re so with you in the moment,” Urban says in one of the interviews. “It’s a really blessed job that I have that I get to see that.”

“Defying Gravity” was released March 31 and debuted as Urban’s first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart.

Urban is touring North America until October 9 and has dates booked in Australia for December.

Editing by SheriLinden at Reuters

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