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'American Idol' David Cook Releases New Song

When asked if he would return to 'Idol' for mentoring duties, the season-seven winner responds: "I would be hard-pressed to say no"

David Cook 2014 S

It’s been a long wait for fans of David Cook — a year, to be exact — but this Monday, the American Idol season-seven winner will release a new song on iTunes. Appropriately enough, it's called “Wait For Me.”

“The song itself is different; it’s more piano based, and that was a conscientious effort with writing the new stuff,” Cook tells The Hollywood Reporter. “The angle was creating music I wasn’t comfortable creating in a musical sense. I wanted to test myself, and I wanted to have fun with that."

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Now based in Nashville, Cook says the song, which was co-written with Chad Carlson, will be released independently, and that he's close to finding a distributor for his long-awaited follow-up to 2011’s This Loud Morning. “I’m talking to a few, and I want to find the right one,” says Cook, promising a new release in 2015. "It's my baby, and I want to find the right family to surround this record with."

It seems moving to Nashville has helped the 31-year old explore his own musicality. Earlier this year, country artist David Nail had a hit with Cook's song on “Kiss You Tonight,” which peaked at No. 18 on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart. The song, co-written with Jay Knowles and Trent Summar, was only the third one he had written since arriving in town.

“It’s been awesome to be on a different side of this,” Cook says. “He did an awesome job with that song.”  As for his own new tunes and which will make it onto an album, "Everything is a contender."

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Up next for Cook: a special charity concert at Jammin Java in Vienna, Virginia on Dec. 2, otherwise known as  #GivingTuesday. The cause is close to his heart: proceeds benefit Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure. Since 2009, the same year his brother, Adam, passed away from the disease, Cook and his fans have raised $930,000 for brain cancer research through the Race for Hope DC and various fundraisers. This month, Cook's Crowdrise campaign aims to raise $70,000 to reach the $1 million mark.  

“Right now, we are just under $60,000,” he explains. “I want to do as much as we can. This is the most important thing in my space: trying to get rid of this disease. I’ve seen firsthand what it can do to someone, and I wouldn't wish that on anybody.”

When asked about Idol, Cook, who mentored the season-13 contestants earlier this year, said he was “bummed” about the news that Randy Jackson is leaving the show for good. Would Cook consider picking up those reins? Says Cook: “It is such a unique experience going to the show and share a few tips about the Idol process. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I don't know what the show's plan is, but if the opportunity came up to do it again, I would be hard-pressed to say no."

Twitter: @MicheleAmabile, @Idol_Worship