John Rich Talks Lindsay Lohan, Tiger Woods + More on ‘Today’
John Rich charmed viewers during the fourth hour of NBC's 'Today' show Wednesday morning, acting as Hoda Kotb's co-host for the day. Dressed in jeans, boots, a black shirt, a light gray jacket with satin lapels and a black Stetson, he talked about filling in for the vacationing Kathie Lee Gifford.
"It was quite an interesting experience hanging out in Kathie Lee's dressing room this morning," he told Hoda as the audience giggled. "I found a pink strapless [dress] that looked great but it was a little tight so I decided to put my own clothes back on."
Viewers were treated to a snippet of John's video for 'Country Done Come to Town,' which John said was shot at his Nashville home called Mt. Richmore. They also heard him sing other bits of songs including the the lyrics to one he wrote in praise of Hoda, set to the tune of The Kinks' classic song 'Lola" on acoustic guitar.
Other show highlights:
* The 2009 movie 'Avatar' is a favorite of John's. He has seen it three times and plans to see the new version of the film that has 9 additional minutes.
* John called Martina McBride, who co-hosted the Tuesday show "one of the coolest ladies you'd ever meet." Co-hosts choose alcoholic drinks to enjoy during the show. Martina choose tequila and John chose Crown Royal with Coca Cola. When Hoda said she couldn't recall what Blake Shelton drank when he hosted the show on Monday, John laughed and guessed it was turpentine.
* A photo of Granny Rich, John's grandmother who lives in Ashland City, Tenn., prompted John to discuss how she makes all of his stage clothes and how well known she is in the music business. "She is kind of everyone's granny in country music," he said.
* Tiger Woods was mentioned after a clip of a New Jersey area horse race was shown. The two horses that were neck-and- neck down the stretch -- named "My wife knows everything" and "The wife doesn't know" brought many laughs especially when John said, "I think it's great that Tiger Woods got both his horses in the race." A few minutes later, when the conversation again turned to Tiger, John said "At the end of the day, it's not anything to joke about. People [including me] cut jokes about it, but at the end of the day it's pretty serious. That family, it's just tearing them apart."
* Lindsay Lohan's alleged substance abuse troubles prompted the following words from John: "I worry about her ... There's no shame in going to rehab. I just think you should stay there long enough to need a haircut. I wish her the best. I hate to see that happen."
* Johnny Cash is John's favorite country artist. He named his son Cash after him. John recalled that the first song he ever sang publicly was a cover of Johnny's 'Folsom Prison Blues' in a kindergarten talent contest. "I didn't win," he said in answer to Hoda's query, then quoting the lyric, "I shot a man in Reno, just to watch him die." "They didn't think it was that funny at the Christian school."
* With the economy still rocky, John said he decided to make some previously unreleased songs available for free to fans. One is 'The Good Lord and the Man,' which he wrote about his grandfather who was awarded six Purple Hearts for his service to our country. To download the free song, go to John's website.