After another solid performance this week, it's unlikely 'American Idol' contestant Scotty McCreery will be returning home soon. That's bittersweet news for his closest friends in Garner, who are beginning to realize their relationships with the country singer could be forever changing.

Still, longtime friend Brett Bailey tells Taste of Country he's excited to see McCreery chasing his dream. He knows they'll remain close, and that fame won't change his character. "[He's an] excellent friend, always there for you no matter what," Bailey says.

The two Garner High School students have been friends since spending hard time in the same church nursery. Bailey says he knew his friend had a special talent long before the humble singer would admit it. "He started singing Elvis on the back of the bus," Bailey says, referring to the elementary school bus. "It was almost like a mini Elvis concert on the back of the school bus."

The high school senior visited McCreery in Hollywood last month, where he got to take in Motown Week at 'Idol.' He was surprised at how small the studio was, comparing it to a high school auditorium. While he didn't get to spend much time with McCreery, Bailey did steal one token to brag about: "The fact that I got a kiss on the cheek from Pia [Toscano], and I got a picture of it ... that kind of made all the guys at school jealous.”