Sundance Head talks drastic 'The Voice' vs. 'American Idol' differences: I reached 5% of my potential on 'Idol'
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/16/2016
Sundance Head has opened up about how his experiences onThe Voice vs. American Idol were drastically different.
Sundance Head, a 37-year-old musician from Houston, TX, was crowned the winner of The Voice's eleventh season, but in 2007, he had competed on American Idol's sixth season when he was 26-years-old and only finished in thirteenth place. He didn't even make it to the finals back then.
"Really, I don't even know how I ended up on that show [Idol]. I tried out for that show just on a whim and really I had no talent! I mean, I really didn't know any songs, I couldn't really play guitar, I didn't know myself as a human being, much less as an artist, and I hadn't discovered my vocal abilities," Sundance told Reality TV World on Thursday.
Sundance signed a recording contract with Universal Motown Records in 2008 after Idol but unfortunately found his music career at a standstill.
"I had no plan whatsoever going into American Idol, at all. And so, I also was very ill prepared for the record deal I received from Jolene Cherry Universal, and the record label seemed to collapse right around that time, 2010, when the Internet and everything was really taking off," Sundance explained.
"So they really only kept the artists that were selling a lot of records for them, and everyone else kind of got cut out. I used to hold a lot of resentment about that whole deal towards Jole and Universal, but now I realize that probably most of the problem with that contract lied within me and my immaturity as, not only a human being, but as an artist."
Sundance got a second shot at fame when he decided to audition for The Voice. He joined Blake Shelton's team and ended up winning the whole thing. The original song he wrote himself and sang in the final performance show, "Darlin' Don't Go," is said to have done the trick and sealed his victory.
"The experience [on The Voice] was so much better. I was so much more prepared as a person. I knew exactly what I wanted to do going into this, exactly what kind of strategy I had, which was to sing. I was going to try to cover as many female songs as I could that were females I thought are super, wonderful singers with great songs. And I tried to stick to that strategy as much as possible, and it did pay off for me," Sundance revealed.
Sundance therefore attributes his success on The Voice to personal growth, saying he took the show more seriously than American Idol and approached each week with laser focus and determination.
When Reality TV World asked Sundance how much his singing talent and overall performance quality has improved since competing on Idol, he said, "Everything about me is better. I think as an artist, right now, as a singer, songwriter and performer, I'm probably 50 percent of what I can be, and I think when I was on [Idol], I was probably at five percent, maybe! Maybe not even that good."
Sundance let out a big laugh and then explained something surprising about his vocal ability and range.
"I don't think I learned how to sing the way I sing now up until probably a year-and-a-half to two years ago when I noticed that I could really soar on notes vocally and go kind of into an operatic vibrato and sustain on notes during choruses and things, which I had never noticed before, and it just kind of happened. I'm not even sure how!" Sundance admitted.
"But once I realized that, then that's when I started to write songs around the ability that I had discovered and also, you know, use it in my daily operations, making a living back in Texas playing music. So I just tried to make it better and better and better every opportunity that I had."
But Sundance's personal and professional growth doesn't stop here, at least according to the soulful country and blues singer.
"I know that it's going to get a lot better still, and I'm very excited about having that opportunity to grow as an artist and a vocalist with the label that presumably will be behind me, helping me discover even more talents that I don't know about," Sundance said, referencing how his The Voice victory lands him a recording contract.
So when summing up the differences between his time on Idol and The Voice, Sundance noted, "It's not even really a comparison."
"I'm just really thankful I may have the opportunity soon -- or even possibly one day -- to see Jolene Cherry again," he continued, "and personally thank her for the opportunity she gave me and to let her know that I understand how it was absolutely me that screwed that whole thing up and was not good at all, which is ironic."