LostLettermen.com is a college football and men's basketball website that regularly contributes to Ball Don't Lie. Today it looks at the current whereabouts of former NBA player Walter McCarty.
Walter McCarty is singing a happy tune. Despite being out of a hoops job, the former Kentucky star, NBA player and assistant coach said he's enjoying time alone with his music.
"Basketball is still [what I love]. I want to teach the game," McCarty said by phone earlier this week. "… I've always done music and been a fan of music. No matter what, it will always be a part of who I am and what I do."
McCarty, 38, has delved full-time into the R&B and soul music that he loves now that he is not playing or coaching basketball. After his playing days ended in 2006, McCarty was an assistant at Louisville under his college coach, Rick Pitino, before moving on to the Indiana Pacers' bench.
McCarty was not retained for this season by the Pacers' Frank Vogel, who took over for the fired Jim O'Brien in January of 2011. McCarty made it clear that he's still head over heels for hoops despite a music career that has seen him release two albums and land national anthem gigs — including at the 2006 NBA All-Star Game and a regular-season contest between the Bulls and Heat this past March
"I don't know if it's really a transition," McCarty said when asked how he has settled into the music biz.
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That's because McCarty suggested he sees music as a diversion to keep his mind off the game he loves — a happy distraction, mind you, but one that remains just that.
According to McCarty, he started singing in church and concert choirs as a boy and even participated in "doo-wop groups." Do you know of any barbershop quartets with a former 6-foot-10 NBA power forward?
That's what sets McCarty apart from many athletes in the music industry. McCarty isn't interested in publicity stunts, money-making schemes or "to be the next superstar." Instead, he admits that he just enjoys singing — whether it is on a studio-produced album or as he did through the hallways of his high school.
McCarty said he is planning to release a double-CD in October with new music that he has created during his time off from basketball packaged with "Emotionally," the last album he dropped in 2011. McCarty's first album, "Moment for Love," came out during his time with the Celtics.
As you can see on this song from his last album, he's much more talented than many of the basketball players who unsuccessfully try their hand at rap:
McCarty's own crooning on "Emotionally" seems to sum up his love affair with basketball that overshadows his passion for music:
It's breaking my heart, to say this is true.
I've been thinking about another one, while making love to you.
You can tell that McCarty would love to be on the sideline with the Pacers, who tied their Eastern Conference semifinal series with the star-studded Miami Heat at one game apiece on Tuesday night.
Instead, McCarty is living in Indianapolis with his family, waiting for the right coaching job to come along and biding his time with a beloved hobby.
"I haven't been with a team, so I've been taking the time to write as much as I can and record as much as I can," McCarty said. "It's just one of those things where I have time to do it … and I have a lot of free, down time."
McCarty was rumored to be the frontrunner as the head coach for Division III SUNY New Paltz last summer, but it didn't come to fruition. The former Celtics forward is making sure he finds a good fit instead of just grabbing an open gig.
"I would love to get back into coaching, but it would have to be the right situation — something close to long term," McCarty said. "I have two [daughters], so I want to get them situated and have some stability.
"The next job that offers is probably [one that I'll consider] but, until then, I'm content with where I'm at."
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