It’s mission accomplished for Idols winner
|Mr Bones- Idols X winner. PIC: Cobus Bodenstein for M-Net/Mzansi Magic|
Vincent Bones’s life has changed after winning the reality show. But will he be successful or vanish like his predecessor? Buhle Mbonambi spoke to him
As the confetti fell, the audience’s screams filling Carnival City’s Big Top Arena, Vincent Bones hugs Bongi Silinda and still in shock, starts singing his first single, Let Me Love. We can barely hear him as the fans scream louder. His fellow contestants run on to the stage to embrace him. Instead of sulking backstage, Bongi comes out and starts dancing to the song. Unathi Msengana runs up to give Vincent a congratulatory hug, while Proverb stands back and smiles.
This was the scene on Sunday evening after Bones, 30, was voted the winner of Idols South Africa. Two days later he still can’t believe it’s happened. “I’m still trying to get used to it man.
|The moment of truth: Proverb announces that Vincent Bones has won Idols X. Bongi Silinda was the graceful runner-up. PIC: M-Net|
“I still wake up having to remind myself that I have won. And I just realised that I’ve been in Joburg for four months – and how exhausted I am. But man, it’s been worth it.”
He said he was shocked when host, Proverb, announced his win. “I was surprised. Shocked. It was a tight race and Bongi could have easily won since she has such a big fan base. We were listening to the crowds screaming for us every week and there was no way to judge who was getting more screams.
“Even during the nationwide tour. We just didn’t realise how much people loved us. We were never exposed to that. So when I heard my name, I just didn’t know what to do or what was going on. I was in a daze, I had all these guys, my Idols family, around me, the people screaming and all that confetti and lights on me. It was a surreal experience.”
Most Idols winners think they have a chance at winning when they make the Top 10. Not Vincent.
But winning Idols (prizes close to R1.2 million) hasn’t been a ticket to the fast lane of the music industry. Usually the work gets harder and, as other winners have realised, being an Idols winner doesn’t guarantee success in the music industry.
With Khaya Mthethwa and Elvis Blue the only winners who have been extremely successful (runner-up, Lloyd Cele is also doing well) Bones has his work cut out for him.
“The plan is to work hard. Winning the show has opened up doors that were going to take a while for me to even knock on. It may look like everything is handed to Idols winners on a silver platter. It’s not true. You are given all the support you may need to make your career a success, but it’s ultimately up to you to use the platform and work hard to make sure that come next year, you’re not forgotten.
“The funny thing is, I’m only the winner for a few weeks. Early next year they start looking for the next Idol. For me to just sit and wait for people to do things for me would be stupid. I’ve worked too hard to get here to stop now. The hard work begins now.”
He’s ready to go to a studio to record his album. “I’m just waiting for the go-ahead. I’m raring to go. I’ve got the material already. I just need to sit down with the team at Universal Music and plan the album.”
While on the show, we saw him perform very soulful songs. Is the album going to be all soul and R&B? “No way. I love soul music. It’s the root of all music and while I love it, I also don’t want to alienate people who are not fans of slow, soulful music. So while there will be soul songs, I’m going to have some dance songs, some pop.
“There is no way that I will box myself. It will be a well rounded album that will hopefully appeal to everyone.”
He plans to work with director and composer Caiphus Semenya and Professor on one of his songs. “Man that will be a great day. I’m a fan of both gentlemen and being able to work with them on what will be a great dance song, will be a dream come true.”
He would also like to work with Bongi. “I had an amazing time singing the duet with her on Sunday. Our voices gelled. That was the first time on the show that I gave a performance where I wasn’t thinking about the outcome. We were in the moment and complemented each other well. That’s when I knew I would have to work with her soon.”
And former Idols? “Khaya Mthethwa, Musa and me on one track? That would be one classic love song man. I’d also love to work with Elvis Blue and Heinz Winkler. I’m versatile like that.”
But for now, he’s hoping for a moment to catch his breath and to rest. “I’m exhausted. I miss my family and it still doesn’t feel real that I have just won Idols. I feel like I always have to remind myself that the competition is over. That I won it. Mission accomplished.”
Vincent Bones is the third Idols winner from KwaZulu-Natal. Jason Hartman and Khaya Mthethwa are former winners.
After a voting glitch that had Sasha Lee Davids declared the winner, Hartman was named the eventual winner four days later when it emerged that he had actually received 200 000 more votes than Davids. They then both became the winners of the fifth season.
Hartman was popular for about two years, even trying his hand at acting, before he disappeared into Idols South Africa winners oblivion.
He is one of the most popular and successful winners. Mthethwa has won major music awards – Metro FM Music Award, a Channel O Award, a Crown Gospel Music Award and a South African Music Award. He recently released his second album, The Uprising, which has gone gold. Mthethwa presented a gospel music show on Mzansi Magic and a few months after winning Idols, he was chosen as mentor for the first season of Clash of the Choirs, winning against more established musicians.