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Scotty McCreery has been waiting for this moment for his entire career. He recently landed a No. 1 single called “Five More Minutes,” just released a critically acclaimed album called “Seasons Change” and he’s engaged to marry the love of his life.

Thing couldn’t get more perfect.

Yet, it hasn’t always been this way.

RELATED: Scotty McCreery’s dark days are over as he releases new album, “Seasons Change”

In fact, it was just a few short years ago when Scotty found himself on the set of the singing reality show that made him famous, armed with a secret he couldn’t bear to tell anyone.

“I probably wasn’t in the best headspace at that point,” Scotty McCreery tells “Variety” about his time mentoring contestants on the “American Idol” set back in 2015 during what everyone thought would be the long-running show’s final season. “The day I found out [that I had lost my record deal,] I had dinner with an ‘Idol’ executive I hadn’t seen in three years. He didn’t know, and he just wanted to catch up. I was a little raw. The next day, we had to film ‘Idol’ again, and I’m like, ‘I’m going to try to put a smile on.’ The [contestants] were great, but I don’t think I talked to too many people that day that I didn’t have to. I kind of stayed in my corner.”

But that was then, and this is now.

Both Scotty and “American Idol” are now officially back, and he revealed to “Variety” that he’ll be mentoring again on the current season on ABC.

“This time I mentored right as I was finding out I just got the first No. 1 single I ever had,” says Scotty. “It’s a pretty crazy contrast here in the last two years.”

RELATED: Scotty McCreery tells us his new love song may end up in his wedding

Unlike some of his “American Idol” counterparts, Scotty says he loves going back to the place that started it all for him as a teenager.

“Everybody always asks if you try to separate yourself from ‘Idol,’ and, sure, you want to establish yourself as an artist away from the show,” he says. “Some [alumni] are like, ‘Don’t ask me questions about “Idol.”‘ But it’s all love for me. It’s where I came from. It was fun to be back and see familiar faces – even down to, like, the security guards.”

And we bet they loved seeing him again, too!

Scotty McCreery reveals plans to return to “American Idol” Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
Tricia Despres is a senior correspondent for Rare Country, based out of Chicago. Join the conversation on Twitter at @RareCountry. We would love to see y’all there.
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