with Joe Cortese

She Is Michael McDonald’s Biggest Fan, And She’s Only 11!

Michael McDonald

“He sounds like an angel.”

Paisley Gardner, 11, of Des Moines, Iowa, is not a “Swiftie” or a “Belieber.” Instead, she swoons over the smooth sounds of Michael McDonald! Yes, THAT Michael McDonald… from the Doobie Brothers and Steely Dan!

Gardner said her obsession with the 1970s soft rock legend started one day in the car with her dad. They were listening to the radio and McDonald’s song “I Keep Forgetting” came on. She said she instantly loved his voice. She Googled him when she got home, expecting someone around the age of 42, and was surprised to see a 71-year-old man with white hair!

Gardner said she got over the surprise pretty quickly, and when her dad scored last-minute tickets to McDonald’s concert for just $7, she was stoked! Gardner was likely the youngest person in the arena, and her adorable reaction was caught on video by her dad and featured in a story by Steve Hartman for CBS News.

Hartman also set up a surprise zoom for Gardner to meet McDonald… in which she sweetly asked if Christopher Cross was his best friend! McDonald also offered to let her watch a show from backstage sometime!

Once the CBS News story aired, Gardner’s fangirl story went viral and she said she’s been surprised by the reaction… people have reached out to her from as far away as Greece!

Gardner said she now has a signed poster of McDonald hanging in her room… and she’s taken a liking to other yacht rock artists as well, including Styx!

But McDonald is her #1… and she remains a super fan!

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