It’s only been a week since The Voice announced Craig Wayne Boyd as its season seven winner. For the runners up, the focus now turns to how to keep the momentum going on their musical endeavors. OHSOGRAY talked with wild card winner Damien Lawson about his experience on the show and how fans can keep up with his next steps.
Congratulations on making it to the finals. Were you at all surprised that Craig won the competition?
Damien: Thank you! No, I wasn’t. I thought that all four of us deserved to be there at the final and anyone could have taken it.
What did Adam say to you after the show?
Damien: He was very encouraging. Pretty much [he] just said, “This is not the end. You made it throughout the entire season. You made every single episode of the show. This is not the end for you.” That kind of conversation.
Looking back at the entire season, is there one of your performances that is your favorite?
Damien: I think to me, my favorite…I have a couple of others that are memorable to me, but my favorite would be performing my original song. I really love my original. I love the message. I love the feel of the song. I love that it’s written by Max Martin. I have a Max Martin song under my belt, which is incredible. I never thought that I would have such a huge caliber producer producing a song for me.
What did your family think about your time on the show?
Damien: My dad has been a huge supporter. My entire family, as well, but my dad overall has been the main person. He was passing out fliers, going around talking to people, promoting me, throughout the entire show. They’re very happy. They’re happy that I made it to the finals and they’re so excited for me to move forward from here to do what I really love full-time.
That’s really special. You must feel good to have that kind of support.
Damien: Yeah, it’s so good to have a supportive family, just to have a supportive unit of people in general behind you helping to…pointing you in the right direction or helping to encourage you when you feel like you can’t do something or motivate you. To just speak positivity into your life.
What was the best advice you got from Adam, a guest coach, or anyone else on the show?
Damien: From Adam…Adam always wanted me to remain true to who I was as an artist. As you notice, the song selections he chose for me, a lot of them I didn’t want to sing. But a lot of them, he wanted the world to see […] I’m not just a singer that sings fluff type material. I’m the one who can pull out the classics. Even though I wouldn’t necessarily have chosen those, cause I like to sing a lot more modern stuff than I sang on the show…every time he chose one of those songs, he knew I wasn’t going to be happy with it, but he would always tell me to trust him because he wanted the world to see that I was a true artist, that I could sing those songs that no one else could sing on the show. I really admired him because…especially when he chose “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother,” I really fought hard not to sing that song with him. He’s like, “You gotta trust me, Damien. If you just trust me, I think everything will be ok. I know you don’t want to sing another ballad. I know you don’t want to sing this song in particular. But let me help you and I think the world will know what type of artist you are. You are a true singer and you need to sing stuff that the world right now…then later on you can showcase the other side of you.” I think the most important lesson was to trust him.
Did you make any close friends on the show that you think you’ll keep in touch with?
Damien: Yes—Anita, Kelli Douglas (she was on the battle rounds), Chris Jamison…I can see them definitely being really really good friends of mine for years to come. They’re genuine people. Chris is so mature for his age and he has such a great focus about himself. They’re genuineness is what draws me to them. I’m the type of person who likes real people and true people and people that really care.
You have a lot of fans who care and have been following you throughout the competition. Do you have a message for your fans? How can people keep track of what you do next?
Damien: I want to say to all my fans that I love them so much and I thank you for every single thing that you did for me to help get me to the final…every single phone call, every text message, just taking time out of your day to vote for me is a huge blessing and huge honor. I do not take any of it for granted. [People] can follow me on my social media @iamdamien music, that’s my Instagram and Twitter, and my Facebook is Damien Lawson. I can’t wait for things to come. You’re going to be able to see, not just the ballads out of me, but the other stuff that I wasn’t allowed to do on the show. I’m so excited. Thank you!