Michael Castro
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Michael Castro

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | SELF

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | SELF
Band Pop Singer/Songwriter




"Interview with Singer-Songwriter Michael Castro"

Former American Idol contestant and singer-songwriter Michael Castro discusses his transition from student to musician and where he plans to take his career
Michael Castro originally auditioned for the eighth season of American Idol with more interest in ditching his school books than sharpening his musical skills. In spite of his inexperience, Castro's pipes proved to be killer enough to land him a trip to Hollywood. He didn't win a spot in the finals but the experience proved to be a catalyst in his love for music and he worked diligently to refine his craft. In 2008, his brother Jason Castro (a finalist on AI's seventh season) bought him a guitar for Christmas and soon after he did his first show as his brother's opening act at Texas A&M University for an audience of 3,000 people. From there he recorded his first EP, went on tour opening for his brother and recorded and released the album My Way which made it to #5 on the iTunes singer/songwriter charts. He is currently planning another tour.

Suite101.com caught up with Castro to discuss his transition from Idol contestant to serious musician and where he hopes to take his career.

Suite101.com: In your American Idol audition, you confessed that you had only been singing 20 days prior to the audition. Did you ever have an interest in music before AI? How has your knowledge and interest in music developed since then?
MC: I've been asked this a few times and really the only reason I ever auditioned was to get out of college. I felt like it was a waste of time, so when I saw my brother blow up on idol I figured I might as well give it a shot. I never had any interest in music or singing but I knew I could sing along to most songs on the radio. Fortunately, AI aired my audition and I was able to build a career in music over night. I tossed up a music page on MySpace with a terrible cover of "This Boy" by James Morrison and in the next couple weeks I accrued over 500,000 plays and 10,000 friends.

S101: Your brother, Jason Castro, was the fourth place finalist in the seventh season of AI. Are you competitive with your brother and did that influence your decision to audition?

MC: I'm not competitive with my brother musically...our styles are very different. He was an influence on me to try out but not directly. He actually didn't think it was a good idea for me to try out because I had never done anything like that before. He has since changed his mind about that I think.

S101: During your audition Kara DioGuardi took an instant liking to you while also calling you "ballsy" and "cocky". Do those two words accurately describe you?

MC: I have been labeled this a few times but I think people too easily substitute "confidence" for "cocky". I would say that confidence is something I consider very important. I think if you don't believe in yourself 100% then nobody else will either. As for "ballsy", I'd say that's just a result of confidence.

S101: Discuss your writing process. Where do you find your inspiration? Do you collaborate with others while writing?

MC: My writing process is simple. I play some chords that sound good and start humming melodies and mumbling random phrases until I find something that sounds good--it could be a word or phrase that flows well. From there, I build the entire song around that phrase. I usually build the chorus first, then verses, then bridge. I co-write all the time. I think it's an important part of song-writing. I've found probably 4 or 5 people that I can write well with, and we feed off of each other creatively. My favorite songs I have written by myself, but I only keep probably 1 out of 5 songs I write alone. When I co-write a song I keep it pretty much every time.

S101: What advice would you give to others hoping to tackle the music scene?

MC: I would say work hard to get your music out there. Don't sit around with killer songs hoping people discover them. Even if you have a team, whether that be a label, manager, booking agent, whatever...you should always be working harder than all of them to get your music out there. Some artists think of having a team as a way to do less work, but I think you should always be doing the most work. Also it's all about the fans. You need to do your best to keep them happy because they're the ones that let you do what you love for a living. Always remember, you don't deserve any of them.

S101: Where do you plan to take your career from here?

MC: I'm just going to keep on playing and keep building up my fan base! I don't ever care about being famous or anything. I'm happy to be making a living doing what I love.

Read more at Suite101: Interview with Singer-Songwriter Michael Castro | Suite101.com http://tracy-dye.suite101.com/interview-with-singer-songwriter-michael-castro-a375485#ixzz1j6UDpc1t - Suite 101


"Michael Castro" - 2009
"My Way" - 2011



My name is Michael Castro, I'm from Dallas, TX. I was featured on American Idol season 8. I am the younger brother of American Idol finalist Jason Castro (who placed 4th on season 7) I have toured the US, and recently released a new album that debuted at #5 on the iTunes singer/songwriter charts. In early 2012 my song "The First Time" was featured on the ABC Family show "Jane by Design."