Despite being a consistently thrilling singer and performer on Season 11 of The Voice, newly crowned winner Sundance Head maintains that yes, he was truly shocked to win against the mega-talented Billy Gilman.
"Other contestants have more social media followers than me," the humble crooner told TVGuide.com in an interview. "I thought it would come down to that. I knew I had performances that swung the pendulum for me. I just prayed to the Lord and asked that either way, win or lose, I'd respect the results of the path he'd have me walk."
Sundance's intimacy with gospel — as well as the blues, soul, rock and R&B that informed his take on country — was truly a thing to marvel at during the competition, and he says we should expect that all-encompassing take on his album that'll be released on Republic Records as part of his prize.
He's been called the "founder of soul country" on social media but he's careful to give props to the originators. "Really," he said, "Ray Charles was doing that before anybody. That's always been my inspiration. I love Motown. I love blues, I love a lot of the music played through the 'Chitlin Circuit'," he said, referring to the network of African-American venues that hosted black performers during segregation.
Today, his influences are still wide; the fan of hip-hop (he cites Lil Wayne and Jay-Z in particular as rappers who've mastered word play and their voices as instruments) names Beyonce as one of the people he'd love to work with on his album. ("We're both from Houston," he noted, adding what we all know to be true: anything Beyonce joins is automatically going to be awesome.) Sheryl Crow, Alan Jackson, Chris Stapleton and his wife Morgane also stand out as dream collaborators. But the album is a ways off; he's yet to meet with executives and plans to take some time off and go into the woods with a guitar to write before the next phase of his career gets underway.
Before that though, he'll be doing what he considers to be another tough gig: singing the National Anthem at the Texans-Jaguars game Sunday — at NRG Stadium in his hometown of Houston, no less. Modest as he is though (he said in the interview he still feels "50 percent" to where he needs to be as an artist), Head admits that he's terrified he'll botch the gig. "I think I'm going to be a nervous wreck. This song means so much, I'm paranoid I'm going to drop a line or sing something wrong. I've been challenged all summer; I look at it like another another opportunity to go slay. I hope [my voice] can soar to the rafters, knock the bolts out of the ceiling. Plus, I get a free game and a hot dog out of it."
And how will he spend that $100,000 prize? Building an in-home studio perhaps, or maybe take his wife Misty and their three kids on a cruise? If he had his way, he'd cop some dirt bikes that he could hit trails with alongside his son. In reality, he'll do with the money what most married men would do with a sudden windfall. "That money is probably going straight to my wife," he said. "I probably won't do anything for myself; I'll just let the family do what they need to do." Don't you just love him?!