"Sometimes all you need is you, your dream and God," according to Danny Gokey.
And patience certainly will help.
It took five years after Gokey finished third in 2009 on the then-mega TV hit "American Idol" for his dream to morph into concrete success in the music world.
"We tend to give up too soon, especially, you know, we kind of live microwave dreams. If I think it today, and it doesn't happen tomorrow, it's not going to happen," the Milwaukee native said during an early stop on TobyMac's current “Hits Deep" tour. "We've just got to get people out of that mentality. Good things take time. And good things that take time usually last."
The "Hits Deep" tour stops in Baton Rouge at 7 p.m. Friday at the Raising Cane's River Center.
Contemporary Christian artist Gokey, who now lives in music hub Nashville, Tennessee, shares the stage on the 29-city tour with fellow "Idol" alum Mandisa, Ryan Stevenson, the group Finding Favour and Christian music newcomer Aaron Cole.
This is Gokey's first time touring with veteran Christian hip-hop entertainer TobyMac.
"In my opinion, from all the people I've seen, he's the best in our industry as far as showmanship. I'm like a sponge out here just learning from him because he's been doing this for what, 30 years?" Gokey said.
On his 2017 "Rise Out of the Dark" tour, also with Mandisa, performances were in smaller, more intimate venues. Now Gokey is back to being part of a bigger show.
"I love doing these size tours. It's an arena tour. Those are always fun," Gokey said. "It's interesting. I had a unique start where my start came from one of the biggest shows in the world, which is 'American Idol.' I know it's not a natural process, but we went from that show to an arena tour. You kind of get spoiled."
Gokey describes "Hits Deep" as a big production with big music.
"It's a lot of encouragement, but encouragement and hope through entertainment and music of faith. I know, for me and my band, I bring horns, I'm a soulful singer. We choreograph dance moves on the stage. I mean it's a huge light set-up," he said. "I guess it makes you want to dance but it feeds your soul."
During the three-hour-plus concert, Gokey, who recently signed with Capitol Records, will perform most of the songs from his last album, "Rise," and the hits off prior album, "Hope in Front of Me."
Besides the title tracks from those two albums, audiences will hear “Tell Your Heart to Beat Again,” and his newest single, “The Comeback,” among others.
The "Rise" album was nominated for a Grammy this year. Gokey, 37, is also a Dove Award winner and two-time KLOVE Male Artist of the Year. His first album, "My Best Days," debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard Top 200. Gokey released his first holiday album, “Christmas Is Here,” in fall 2015.
After "Idol," Gokey initially pursued country music.
"It's interesting because I love how God can steer you where you're supposed to go," Gokey said. "You know, there's a lot of hands in the decisions after the show. I went that way. I listened to country music growing up, I believed in it."
A setback came in 2011, however, when Gokey lost his record deal with Sony/RCA.
"It was a little bit humiliating coming from the biggest diving board you could jump off of and for me to land nowhere," he said. "But I love how God has the final say."
Gokey eventually would revive his career with BMG Records, but there were some dark days in the interim. Having lost his first wife, Sophia Martinez, to a heart condition just before competing on "Idol," the singer experienced bouts of depression.
"'Rise' itself came from a depression I went through," he explained. "In the title track, I felt that God was speaking to me in that moment. You know I can either stay stuck here in the mess that I'm in, or I can get up and move forward, and as I get up and move forward, healing would come, and the ability to touch a world through my personal experience could happen."
"Hope in Front of Me," released in 2014, was the musician's first album after finding love again, he said.
Now remarried, he and his wife, Leyicet Peralta, have three children ages 5, 3, and 6 months. The family travels with him on the tour bus whenever possible.
And at each tour stop, Gokey hopes audiences come away with just that — hope.
"I want them to walk away with believing that coming to a concert is not just an escape — it's divine destiny that they're there," he said. "And they're going to walk away and change is coming in their life if they so choose to partner with God for their future."
'Hits Deep' tour
FEATURING: TobyMac, Danny Gokey, Mandisa, Ryan Stevenson, Finding Favour and Aaron Cole
WHEN: 7 p.m. Friday
WHERE: Raising Cane's River Center, Baton Rouge
TICKETS: $25-$70 at ticketmaster.com