American Idol 2020 winner Just Sam (aka Samantha Diaz) recently revealed a sobering truth. According to The Sunshe poured her heart out about returning to busking in NYC subways in a since-deleted Instagram caption on May 1. Alongside a video of the enormously talented singer performing in the station rocking camo pants and a jacket, she shared details. “Back in 2021, I was super embarrassed to be going back to the trains,” she reportedly wrote.
“I didn’t want people to know that I legit needed the money & I didn’t want people to know that it wasn’t optional. I was disappointed in myself for allowing myself to fall so low after winning idol, but then I had to take it easy on me and remember that I started my journey with Idol at 20 years old. Not even knowing anything about Hollywood or the music industry.”
Samantha continued, explaining what she’s learned since her massive American Idol success. “Since then, I have learned so much and I’ve been able to take my experiences and share them with other artist in hopes that they don’t experience the same things that I did when It comes to making it in this life,” she wrote. “For my season, there was COVID-19 which literally had the world shut down and had many people in hiding unsure of what was going to happen next. I was very much unsure of what was going to come. For a few months after winning I was unsure of what was next, but I was ready and waiting for whatever it was.”
Just Sam continued: “Everyone wants to know what happened and why this or why that & I will answer those questions someday, but In the meantime I’ll say this. I never expected to win, but I did, I was so grateful and I know that people are feeling like I let them down.
Sam heartbreaking detailed feeling that she let “everyone down,” including herself. “I’m not like any other contestant that has ever had a chance to be apart [sic] of the American Idol production,” she shared. “My year was unlike any other.” The TV personality continued, “There are people who have had more success than me and good for them I’m happy for them, but I am not them. I don’t like my situation, but it won’t be this forever.”
Samantha won season 18 of American Idol back in May of 2020. The New York native had openly shared in the past that she’d been singing in New York subways since middle school as a means of helping support her grandmother, as her mother was incarcerated.
During a particularly emotional episode, judge Lionel Richie told her, “I want you to feel safe. I’m so grateful that God put you in front of us.” She then asked the judges to pray with her, which they did.
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