This year, Foster's faith in Groban is paying off handsomely. In the last 10 months, Groban's career has gained 10 years' worth of momentum. He sang at the closing ceremonies for the Olympics; at the Kennedy Center's Sept. 11 "Concert for America"; at the World Series; and on his own special on PBS, which was later released on a DVD. He sang on a float in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
When it was announced that Barbra Streisand would release an album of duets with one appearance by a surprise artist — the artist was Groban.
If you try to analyze what kind of presence is working for him, it is in some respects an absence of the kind of gimmicks many new performers use to get attention (or cover up a lack of vocal ability). With his voice, he doesn't need them. In his first television special, he clearly held the stage on his own.
Of all the appearances he has made this year, one of the most rewarding was a reminder of how far he had come. The gawky kid who was called in as a rehearsal stand-in with Celine Dion four years ago stood as her co-star four weeks ago, singing the same number, "The Prayer," at a concert for World Children's Day.
Groban said the times he feels he is at his best as a performer are when "you're in this zone, and it's only when you've got absolutely nothing going on except the emotion of the song, that everything seems to click."
"I think one thing is going to happen in five years," Foster said. "You're just going to say the word 'Josh' and there is going to be no other Josh, it's just going to be Josh Groban."
To see more of the exclusive footage of Celine and Josh and other artists, you may purchase a DVD of the Concert for World Children's Day at http://www.rmhc.yahoo.com. All of the net proceeds go to benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities.