Jordan Segundo, the pride of Hawaii, was a fan favorite back in season 2 of American Idol
. Making it to the final 32, Jordan's impressive crooning melted the hearts of many a female fan, and opened the door for Jordan in his career. Now going to school full-time, as well as writing and performing music, Jordan is continuing his quest to become a well-known star.
Jordan was kind enough to sit down and talk to us about his career, his future, and the new season of American Idol
Can you give us a little bit of background about life before Idol? What exactly were you doing?
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Well, life before Idol, I was actually a high school student here in Hawaii. And I've been singing my whole life, so I was singing at parties and doing lots of performances for family and friends and different community events. That was basically what I was doing before, and then my senior year of high school is when I auditioned for American Idol up in Los Angeles.
What made you decide to audition for American Idol?
Well, I heard about the show from watching the first season, so I decided to audition and, what happened was, I won a local singing competition here in Hawaii that flew me to LA to audition for the show. So I went up there, I did my auditions, and out of 75,000 (contestants), I made it to the top 32.
You competed with some very talented people on Season 2, and not only that, but you were also the very first singer from Hawaii and the very first Asian performer to obtain a spot in the finals. How was that overall experience for you and did you feel a lot of pressure going in to the competition?
You know, going into it, it was an overwhelming experience. I've been doing competitions since I was six years old but this was sort of the biggest one. I felt a lot of pressure not only from my family, but I think because I was representing Hawaii in some way, I felt a little pressure there. But you know, I went in and I did my best, I tried my hardest, and I walked out of it with a lot of good advice and it definitely helped launch my career. So, I went in there with a positive attitude, and although it didn't happen the way I wanted it to, it definitely helped me in a lot of ways.
What happened after Idol?
A lot. I was able to record my very first solo album entitled "Jordan," which was a goal of mine since I was a really young child. So that was really cool. I was also able to perform across the state here in Hawaii and do some shows on the west coast and on the east coast as well. Things that I never thought that I would ever do, like perform for the President, perform at the Pro Bowl here in Hawaii. I also performed with a 60-piece orchestra, The Honolulu Symphony here in Hawaii. And, this past summer I tried something new, I actually performed in the "King and I" with six sold out shows with Richard Chamberlain. He was the King and I was Lun Tha. So all these experiences that I've done, without American Idol, I don't think would have happened...going to different places and meeting different people. I'm very fortunate and very lucky as well.
Are you still in school?
I am, full-time. So, on top of everything, I have my classes. I do some online classes, so it does help me a little bit, but I've been a full-time student since I was right out of American Idol. So, despite traveling and everything, I was able to manage my classes in between.
Is it hard for you to juggle academics, friends, and also your music career?
It's a little bit hard. Being in the entertainment industry and trying to balance school and a social life, it's a little hard. There are some times when you have to sacrifice one for the other. But I've got a supportive family and a great manager, Nancy, of course, who sort of helps me put everything together and really tries to keep a balanced schedule and everything. Sometimes I may not always do my homework and have to catch up and I really work hard on that, but you know, it's a goal of mine to finish school. Music will always be my priority, but I think it's all about balance and working hard at what you really want to do. So I mean, it can happen. It's not like it's not possible.
Are you dating anyone? Do you have a girlfriend right now?
(Laughs) Single. You know...I've been dating a few wonderful ladies, but no, I'm single right now. And I think it's good that way... (Laughs)
What's in store for you this year? What can fans expect to see from you?
Wow, there's a lot. Well, here in Hawaii, American Idol is coming up again and I've been a part of...well, I've been doing it for the past three years now - I'm a commentator on Kh1, which is the number one news station here in Hawaii. So I'll be on the news every week giving my opinion on the show, talking about that. Also, I've been invited to be a part of this big music festival here in Hawaii. It's actually Matt Catingub, who's the Honolulu Symphony conductor, is putting it on, and it's going to be a week long festival with all different performers. We've got Natalie Cole coming down, Ruben Studdard, Michael McDonald...so I'm really lucky and fortunate to be a part of this festival, and that's going to be in March. Another goal of mine this year is to definitely come out with a second album. It's in the works and we're trying to plan it the right way, so hopefully that comes out, or I can start working on that this year.
Where do you see yourself in the next few years? Are there certain things that you're really hoping to accomplish?
There's a lot. I recently started taking piano lessons so I've been doing a lot of that during the week and also song writing. So that's a big goal of mine to continue working on that and become a song writer, to be able to write songs. On the recording side, I definitely hope to continue recording more albums, hopefully broaden my horizons on the mainland, of course, and internationally as well. And maybe dabble and try acting and more on stage...there's just a whole lot of different things I want to try in the next few years.
Is it hard for you to believe that American Idol is still so popular today?
Well you know, I'm not surprised that it's still popular. I don't think anyone ever thought that, after six seasons, American Idol would still be the number one show. I just think that because it appeals to such a wide range of audiences...you know, the little kids can watch it, the grandmas and the grandpas enjoy it...I'm happy for the show. I really think it does help people in their careers and to realize their dreams and so I think it's a great launching pad in many ways.
Do you think American Idol has changed much from what you've seen the past couple of seasons compared to when you competed on Season 2?
I think the format is basically the same. There's a lot that does happen back stage that people don't see, so I think that that's the same. I think that when I was on the show, they were really just starting out, so they were still trying to fix the little things and really try to work out the kinks. But I think now they've got something, and they have a formula that really works, so they're pretty much sticking to it.
Do you have any lasting thoughts that you'd like to leave your fans with?
I just want to thank all the fans for all their support throughout the years and for really encouraging me to continue to do what I do. And I encourage everyone else out there to continue to pursue their dreams, to follow their heart, and to not give up...and just believe in themselves and no matter what it is they want to do, they can accomplish it by staying positive and really believing in themselves and not giving up.
Manager - Nancy Bernal - Phone - (808) 947-5736 E-Mail - NancyBernal@aol.com