Deshawn Goncalves has one incredible voice that has propelled him to the final weeks of American Idol season 19. From his first audition to his latest performance of “The Way We Were” by Barbra Streisand, Deshawn has wowed the judges. He’s definitely got what it takes to be the next American Idol winner.
So, who is Deshawn Goncalves? HollywoodLife has rounded up insightful facts about Deshawn’s parents, his past performances, his school life, and more. These are 5 things you need to know about Deshawn.
1. Deshawn made Lionel Richie cry during his audition.
Deshawn performed a gorgeous rendition of “Everything Must Change” by Nina Simone on the piano for his audition. He got emotional himself after finishing the song. Lionel Richie wiped tears away from his eyes after Deshawn was done. “That was powerful,” Lionel told Deshawn. Katy Perry echoed Lionel and said the performance was “magic.”
2. His mother was just 13 when he was born.
During his audition, Deshawn revealed that his mother was only 13 years old when she gave birth to him. His father was just a few years older than his mother. Deshawn admitted that, because of their age, his mom and dad “didn’t really know how to be parents.” He said that “music has always been my saving grace.”
3. Deshawn’s dad inspired him to explore music.
His dad ended up going to jail after getting into trouble. As a result of his father’s absence, Deshawn began acting out. After his father, Stepheon, was released from prison, he was determined to turn his life around. “He taught me so many things, like how to take care of myself and handle business,” Deshawn said. “He really pushed me to be better as a man. I started to sing and play instruments and get straight As, and I graduated at the top of my class.”
4. He performed in front of some music greats.
The singer has performed in the presence of Patti LaBelle, according to his official website. He’s also played the piano for B.B. King’s daughter. He released his first singer, “Time is a Teacher,” in 2019.
5. Deshawn is in college.
Deshawn is currently attending Jackson State University in Mississippi. He received a full ride scholarship to college after graduating at the top of his class. He also plays the tuba in the school’s marching band.