Michael Grimm Said “I Just Never Thought Of Winning This”
The great blues singer, Michael Grimm, said he couldn’t make it past the early audition rounds last year, now won the America’s Got Talent competition on the show that aired Wednesday night.
Grimm is now 32 and he has been performing professionally since he was 12, but he had spent most of his artistic career playing lounges and some other small events. But now, after wining the AGT, he’ll have a $1 million annuity and also the potentially to sing contracts as a Las Vegas headliner.
He’s a rather humble singer and guitarist, who also dedicated his season to the grandparents, Tom and Laura Butters. He appeared to gain some more confidence as he marched through the weeks of performances. But he did seemed shocked to have won over the big and heavy favorite Jackie Evancho, who’s the angelic 10-year-old with a strong, heavenly soprano voice.
He said: “I was so prepared to bow out, the biggest nightmare was standing next to her on stage, I knew she was going to win. I just never thought of winning this.”
Grimm sang beautifully the Percy Sledge hit called “When A Man Loves A Woman” for the Tuesday’s finale. The judge Sharon Osbourne said it was a: “perfect song, a perfect delivery and a great performance.”
Now, because he was raised by the Butters, Grimm has now promised to use his winnings to buy them a new house. This is needed because the Mississippi couple lost theirs in the Hurricane Katrina.
Grimm was still shocked by the impact of his win when, a half hour after the show this ended, when he and his girlfriend called Lucie, hugged and even cried on stage. He also said, after he sang a duet with Jewel, another singer: “I’m getting cold sweats, a queasy stomach, yet at the same time, I’m so happy. To make it after so many years of struggling, it’s like a big payday.”
On the other hand, there was Evancho, a fifth-grader from the suburban Pittsburgh, who finished as a runner-up. She discovered a passion for the opera after she saw “Phantom of the Opera” just three years ago. She even got over the flamboyant classical singer called Prince Poppycock (John Quale) and a group, Fighting Gravity, a novel performance group that was composed of 13 people, Virginia Tech students.
The British opera star Sarah Brightman said about this: “I think her life is going to be very, very special. The famous singer performed in a duet with Evancho for this Wednesday’s finale. There were also other stars at the event that included performances by Usher, Donna Summer, the Goo Goo Dolls, Lionel Richie and even the illusionist David Copperfield.
Evancho, the little one, was a late entry to the summer series, among a dozen acts that were chosen through a YouTube contest that dissolved the the traditional multi-city auditions that were taking place and that attracted thousands of singers, magicians, dancers, performance artists and even the dubious oddballs that have made this Talent summer the most popular one since it started back in 2006.
The funny part is that Evancho became a fan favorite since her first appearance in early August. Her Internet videos have now drawn more than 20 million views in such a short time.
Here’s what Morgan, also a judge on the British show, said about the little girl’s talent: “I’ve seen a lot of auditions over the past five years. I’ve never seen more potential than Jackie Evancho.”
The other ones that had big chances were the members of Fighting Gravity, a group which performs dance moves and also illusions against a black-light background. They finished third in the viewer votes and also seems destined to make it as a Las Vegas act. Gregg Curtin, a senior electrical engineering major, says: “This isn’t the end of Fighting Gravity.”
So now Curtin and his fellow group members, who skipped all of their fall semester to compete on the AGT, had a misstep on Tuesday when an errant stage light was illuminating one of the performers, but Morgan then called the group “brilliantly clever.”
As far as Poppycock went, he finished fourth among the fan votes. His facing off against Evancho, Grimm and the Fighting Gravity on Tuesday, got the campy Poppycock to seem like stumbling from last week’s semifinal performance, and looked like a Yankee Doodle Dandy-meets-Liberace medley. So Morgan told him: “You’re guilty of that terrible crime, taking yourself a bit too seriously. This was self-indulgent.”
However, he also later declared: “You are a star, and you will be a star.”11