For the next week and a half, Casey Muessigmann plans to spend time in northwest Iowa with family and friends.
He will perform at Morningside College on Oct. 16, for his former classmates, and will take the stage at the Wild Rose Casino in Emmetsburg on Oct. 20.
That's not how he had it planned.
He had hoped he was going to be continuing to entertain the nation as a participant on the popular NBC television show "The Voice." But that plan changed when he lost a battle to Scottish rocker Terry McDermott.
The battle - the first of the new season - played out for fans of Muessigmann and the show Monday night. It was a moment he endured several weeks ago, but was sworn to secrecy until the show aired.
"For this entire time, the past three months, that's the first time I listened to that song," Muessigmann said.
"I watched it and I was kind of hoping I messed up so I wouldn't feel so bad. If there were a reason, but I knew I killed it," the Spencer native said.
The two men earned tremendous praise from all four judges for their performance, but in the end, coach Blake Shelton opted for the rocker over the country boy.
Muessigmann admitted he knew the deck was stacked against him.
"If you look at the show - the history of the show - country guys get thrown under the bus. All I know is when we got our song choice, and I found out who I was singing against, I said, 'Well, it was great being here,' Muessigmann said.
The song, "Carry On Wayward Son," by Kansas, was a perfect choice for McDermott.
"I knew going in I was the underdog. When you're put in a situation like that, all you can do is prove you're different form what they expect."
He did that by making himself comfortable with the choice.
"All I could do was try to go out and make it my own. The frustrating part was getting recognized for doing that. For stepping up and showing the growth, and then having nobody else pick me up," Muessigmann said.
He continued, "I couldn't believe it. The look on CeeLo's face pretty much said it all. He didn't want me anymore."
CeeLo initially made the pitch, along with Shelton, for Muessigmann's selection.
"They talked about how much growth I had shown, but they didn't try to steal me," he admitted, disappointed at his end on the show. "It's bittersweet officially being the first person knocked off the show, but I guess it means I've got more time to go out and work. I can keep writing and keep playing shows."
Shelton credited Muessigmann, pointing out, "Casey has shown the most growth in the rehearsals." He added, "Casey won't back down from any challenge."
"Terry McDermott deserved to stay in the competition, but I didn't think it would be on Team Blake," Muessigmann said. "To hear the comment that Terry knows his voice better ... I know my voice, and it's sure not 70s rock." Muessigmann now makes his home in Nashville, with a roommate he met during "The Voice" process. The two continue to work and perform together, and Muessigmann will return south for scheduled performances by Oct. 24.
In the meantime, the country crooner is looking forward to performing back home.
"I hope everyone comes out to see me while I'm here. I'll shake every single hand. I appreciate all the support," Muessigmann said.