Gavin DeGraw I'm Channeling My Inner Mr. T

6/8/2015 10:57 AM PDT

Gavin DeGraw -- I'm Channeling My Inner Mr. T

EXCLUSIVE

No one's ever going to confuse Gavin DeGraw with Mr. T -- which explains why the singer uses the "Rocky III" villain's name as an alias ... but sadly for Gavin, we busted him at LAX. 

Our photog was scouring the airport for Mr. T after seeing a Clubber Lang sign in baggage claim, but found Gavin instead ... who explained why he chose the secret identity. 

Hate to burst his bubble, but there's a flaw in Gavin's plan. Seeing "Clubber Lang" on a sign is always gonna draw attention from paps and fans. 

Check out the video ... sounds like he has a Plan B and C, and D ...