MANILA, Philippines - Following the collective disappointment surrounding Jessica Sanchez' near "American Idol" win, Pinoy's can now bank their hopes anew on singer Jason Farol as he vies for success in the new talent show "Duets."
Farol is one of the eight amateur singers who have been chosen to compete in the new music series. Hosted by Quddus (MTV's "Total Request Live"), the show premiered its pilot episode on May 24 [US Time] with music superstars like "Idol" season 1 champ Kelly Clarkson, singer-songwriter John Legend, country singer Jennifer Nettles, and R&B singer Robin Thicke as judges.
Part of the series' original concept is to have the superstars journey across America looking for undiscovered talent worthy of being their protégés. But instead of just staying behind the judges' panel, these judges would go onstage and perform a duet with their respective talents. And Philippine bet Farol ended up under the wing of "Idol" alumna Clarkson.
For his first performance in the show, Farol, together with Clarkson sang the latter's original hit "Breaking Your Own Heart."
The singer-judges seemed really happy with the performance. Nettles, clearly enamored with the 23-year-old singer, said, "When you open up and your voice opens up, it lights up the room."
Thicke also noticed the same thing as Nettles as he pointed out that Farol's voice and face are "adorable." Legend, on the other hand, echoed that he loved Farol's presence in their show.
Legend said, "I love how much you love being here and how much you love music and love this opportunity."
Despite the praises, Farol ended up fourth place out of all four competitors who had performed so far.
Jason Farol up-close
Hailing from Torrance, California, Farol has long dreamed of becoming a professional singer. However, he agreed to push his dream aside in order to fulfill his parents' expectations that he pursue higher education.
Inspired by his father, a singer with jazz and blues inclination, Farol nevertheless began singing R&B hits for his own enjoyment.
Dedicated as he was, Farol was actually no stranger to singing contests. In an article at morethanlegiit.com, Farol-dubbed as a "trifecta" for his killer looks, dancing skills and vocal power-related that he has already tried his luck in several popular talent shows including "Idol," " America's Got Talent," "The Glee Project" for the hit TV series "Glee" and, believe it or not, even GMA-7's "StarStruck." But, despite his palpable "vocal charisma," as the blogger noted, Farol unfortunately wasn't able to come out of his shell and fully unveil his talent until this opportunity with "Duets."
News website ABC7.com's report quoted Farol as saying that the people who know him personally would probably be shocked that he joined the competition.
"I didn't really tell people I sing. I didn't sing a lot before at home, so I think when they see this, they're gonna be really shocked," Farol said.
Regardless, Farol has already uploaded a number of covers on the video sharing site YouTube, like the Journey original "Faithfully," which he covered to sound like the version in "Glee," and Cee-Lo Green's "Forget You," among others.
Although the show has just begun, Farol shares that he's already learned a couple of things from Clarkson.
"The biggest thing is warm-ups, how to use my breath right," Farol said in the ABC7 report, adding, "[And] how to perform and try to get the nerves out because we're here for a reason. So I just need to believe in myself."