The Voice: Jamar Rogers
When he first entered the stage for his blind audition on season 2 of The Voice, his appearance showed signs of his past life. Looking older than his 29 years, Jamar Rogers was similar to other Voice contestants in that he appreciated being judged on his voice alone, and nothing else.
While the television audience had the opportunity to hear some of his story before he sang, the celebrity coaches had no idea who was about to touch their hearts, and the hearts of millions of Americans. Behind the voice of an angel was a story of heartache, despair, and triumph.
Let Jamar Tell His Story
Jamar Rogers' Story
Jamar spent six years of his life in a raging battle with an addiction to crystal meth. While addicted, he also contracted HIV. Visually, Jamar looks young and smiles brightly. But that appearance hides a difficult past.
From Jamar's Blog on The Voice web site:
"I've been singing my whole life but have only been pursuing it for a few years. I had a pretty disastrous struggle with crystal meth for 6 years that derailed all of my plans. I had dreams to stand on stage and sing, but couldn't get past the drug. The drug influenced me to live a very risky existence and I found myself HIV-positive because of my foolish decisions."
During this rough time, Jamar was homeless and began dealing drugs. He hit rock bottom and thought he would never get out of this life. But like a phoenix, Jamar has risen from the ashes.
Jamar's Blind Audition for The Voice
How Does "The Voice" Work?
- How The Voice Works - NBC.com
Social Media Correspondent Christina Milian explains how the hit singing competition series chooses a winner.
Jamar Rogers on The Voice
Jamar Rogers received his invitation to the blind auditions in a special visit from Carson Daly (see link above). After receiving that invitation, he said through tears:
"There is beauty that does come from ashes. That you can have a second chance if you want one and fight for it hard enough and want it hard enough you can have it."
Jamar sang Seven Nation Army for his blind audition on The Voice. Cee Lo Green was the only coach to turn his chair, which is how the coaches invite the contestant to be on their team. Jamar jumped up and down on the stage and beamed his infectious smile. He explained to Cee Lo and the audience that he was a long-time fan, and that Cee Lo was the reason he auditioned for the show. After many compliments in both directions, Jamar gladly joined his idol's team.
Every time he performed, Jamar put his own brand on the each song. The crowds loved him, and the coaches often commented about how everyone appreciated Jamar and his story. Cee Lo once said that if Jamar wrote his life story, it would be a best seller with lines of customers around the block. Jamar was saved by America (gaining more votes than anyone else on Team Cee Lo) several times. He became known not only for his enthusiasm and his smile, but also for his tears each time he heard praise.
Jamar's Performances on The Voice
Defining Victory: Jamar's 30th Birthday
He had always said he wouldn't make it to 30. At rock bottom, Jamar told his mother that he didn't expect to live to see his 30th birthday. That was a true moment of despair.
Not only did Jamar live to see his 30th birthday, but it occurred during his time on The Voice. The triumph was celebrated with the viewers when he moved on to the next round. His constant companion and cheerleader on the show was his mother, who called this "a very pivotal year" for Jamar.
On May 5, 2012, Jamar tweeted, "I can be my own worst enemy sometimes. It's important that I remember I build those mountains. And mountains are to be climbed."
Jamar Rogers performs "Are You Gonna Go My Way" on The Voice
What's Next for Jamar Rogers?
While he was eliminated from The Voice in the semifinal round, he is using his new-found fame to further his causes. He will soon be filming a public service announcement for the Centers for Disease Control.
Follow Jamar on Twitter (@jsquidward) for more updates. You can also find him on Facebook.
In a recent interview for Tulsa World.com, Jamar said the following about how The Voice has helped him show his triumph and help others know there is a way out:
"They gave me a voice to speak to a nation, and let them know that love and goodness and compassion are making a comeback"