Remember White Chocolate? “American Idol” producers seem to be hoping you won’t. Last season, the sweetly named rap-and-soul group formed during Hollywood Week and featured the vocal stylings of [artist id="3188062"]Kris Allen[/artist] and Matt Giraud. Also in the foursome was a guy named Justin Williams, who didn’t make the semifinals. We never heard from him again … until he popped up on Tuesday night’s “Idol” season premiere .
No mention was made of Williams’ past appearance on the show. But we did get a touching look at the 27-year-old vocal coach’s battle with cancer and a dazzling rendition of “Feeling Good,” the song Adam Lambert covered last year during Rat Pack night.
This year, Williams seems well-prepared for the increased attention. His Facebook page contains over 100 professionally shot photos, some in black and white, some showing the singer posed with a guitar in front of rock outcroppings and a picturesque lake. His personal Web site contains a blog and links to his YouTube and Twitter pages.
“It’s not what happens to you that matters, it’s what you do about it that makes you who you are!” he tweeted on Tuesday night as the taping of Hollywood Week began.
Williams’ YouTube page features clips of him playing guitar and piano with his band, singing solo and performing the national anthem at an Arizona Cardinals game. His band, Justin Williams & the UnderCovers, covers tunes like OneRepublic’s “Apologize” and Frank Sinatra’s “Fly Me to the Moon.” Additionally, Williams uploaded a bunch of low-budget, photo-based music videos for renditions of songs like Rihanna’s “Russian Roulette” and Pink’s “Please Don’t Leave Me.”
Another YouTube video on a different channel shows Williams giving a tour of his own music studio, complete with mics, instruments, computers, soundboard and soundproofing. He then steps into the booth to record vocals for a duet of “The Prayer.”
On Tuesday’s show, Williams described his harrowing six months of chemotherapy, calling his battle with cancer a “very interesting, very humbling experience.”
After his golden-ticket-winning audition, a rather smitten-looking Simon Cowell said simply, “Thank you. Thank you.”
“I think the girls are going to like you,” guest judge Victoria Beckham said. “You have a nice face and a nice presence.”
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