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Vonzell_Solomon

Vonzell Solomon

Vonzell Monique Solomon (born 18 March 1984), better known as Vonzell Solomon or Baby V, is an American singer and aspiring actress who finished in third place in the fourth season of the television series American Idol. She also appeared in the independent movie Still Green.

Biography and career

Born in Baxley, Georgia, Vonzell's family relocated to Fort Myers, Florida when she was an infant. Her parents are Alice & Larry Goethie (she uses her mother's maiden name professionally). She has one older sister, Zanobra, and two brothers, Kendall and Gabriel.

Vonzell attended high school at the Cypress Lake Center for the Arts. She holds a black belt in Sembact martial arts; her father is a martial arts instructor (affectionately known as "Master G"). Prior to auditioning for American Idol, she worked for the United States Postal Service as a Rural Letter Carrier and sung with local bands in Southwest Florida. In April 2004, she released a demo CD, My Struggle exclusively to her website. It was made unavailable while she was competing on Idol.

In 2002, Vonzell auditioned for the second season of P-Diddy's Making the Band, but was not selected for the group. Diddy has stated that he does not recall her, and during an appearance on Live with Regis and Kelly asserted that she was not well suited for a hip-hop group, anyway.

American Idol

Vonzell's auditioned for the fourth season of Idol in Orlando, Florida was her second auditioned for the show, as she had originally auditioned during the second season, but was cut by the producers.

Of her first performance in the Top 12 (Dionne Warwick's "Anyone Who Had a Heart," February 28, 2005), judge Simon Cowell said Vonzell needed to do something memorable to make it far in the competition. The following week, Cowell called her performance of the Emotions' "Best of My Love" her first memorable performance of the competition.

On May 11, 2005, the top 4 remaining Idol contestants each performed two numbers for the themes Nashville Songs and Gamble & Huff Songs. Vonzell performed "How Do I Live" and Thelma Houston's "Don't Leave Me This Way." Despite being in the bottom two that week, she made it into the top 3 when Anthony Fedorov was eliminated.

On May 17, 2005, Clive Davis selected Dionne Warwick's "I'll Never Love This Way Again" for Vonzell to perform, the judges selected Aretha Franklin's "Chain of Fools" and her own choice was Donna Summer's "On the Radio." She was eliminated on the following night's results show-- leaving Carrie Underwood and Bo Bice to battle it out in the finale. She did, however, return for the season finale and performed "With You I'm Born Again" with Billy Preston.

American Idol performances

Week # - Theme Song Choice Original Artist Result
Top 24 "Heat Wave" Martha and the Vandellas Safe
Top 20 "If I Ain't Got You" Alicia Keys Safe
Top 16 "Respect" Otis Redding Safe
Top 12 - Songs of the 60's "Anyone Who Had a Heart" Dionne Warwick Safe
Top 11 - Billboard'' #1's "Best of My Love" The Emotions Safe
Top 10 - Songs of the 90's "I Have Nothing" Whitney Houston Safe
Top 9 - Broadway Musicals "People" Barbra Streisand Bottom 3
Top 8 - Contestants' Birth Year "Let's Hear It for the Boy" Deniece Williams Safe
Top 7 - 70's Dance Music "I'm Every Woman" Chaka Khan Safe
Top 6 - Songs of the 21st Century "I Turn to You" All-4-One Bottom 3
Top 5 - Leiber and Stoller Songs and Billboard Top 40 "Treat Me Nice"
"When You Tell Me That You Love Me"
Elvis Presley
Diana Ross
Safe
Top 4 - Nashville Songs & Gamble and Huff Songs "How Do I Live"
"Don't Leave Me This Way"
LeAnn Rimes
Thelma Houston
Bottom 2
Top 3 - Clive Davis', Judges & Contestants' choice "I'll Never Love This Way Again"
"Chain of Fools"
"On the Radio"
Dionne Warwick
Aretha Franklin
Donna Summer
Eliminated
Season Finale "With You I'm Born Again" Billy Preston (feat. Syreeta)

Post-American Idol

Vonzell is the CEO at her independent record label, Melodic Records. Before starting the company, she was the highest-finishing American Idol contestant not to receive a recording contract afterward. She also makes a cameo in the 2007 independent film Still Green, and has served as a paid spokesperson for the United States Postal Service, as she was a rural carrier before her Idol appearances.

In mid-2006, it was announced that Vonzell had a planned record. The record has gone into development hell, and since then not much has been heard about her record. Her representatives claimed that none of the "media's speculations" were true and that they just hit a few bumps along the road. A single from this mostly completed album was scheduled for release in late 2007. My Struggle, recorded under the name "Baby V," was released to iTunes on January 9, 2007.

On May 17, 2007 a fire erupted in Vonzell's Fort Myers, Florida home. Authorities suspect the cause to be an electrical malfunction in the attic. She was not injured, however, damage to the home was estimated at more than $200,000, and a family pet, a small dog, died in the fire. After discovering the fire, she called 911 from a neighbor’s home. The 911 call was received at 11:25 p.m., and firefighters from the South Trail Fire Department had the fire under control at 11:45 p.m.

Vonzell is now performing on the Simply Ballroom tour, and is scheduled to appear at Idol Camp from July 27 - August 2. Idol Camp is located on Pali Mountain in California's San Bernardino Mountains.

Vonzell recently finished a brief stint at the Lubbock Memorial Civic Center in Lubbock, Texas, as Glinda/Aunt Em, in Todrick Hall's retelling of the Wizard of Oz. Oz, the Musical sold out both nights. She starred alongside Season Two alumni Rickey Smith as the Tinman, and Season 4 Alumni Scott Savol, as the Lion, and Mikalah Gordon, as Dorothy.

Arrest

Security officials nabbed Vonzell June 10, 2008 at Southwest Florida International Airport when they found an unloaded gun in her luggage. She actually has a permit to carry a gun. Authorities took her gun away and have scheduled a court date.

Discography

Vonzell's rendition of "Best of My Love" appears on the American Idol Season 4: The Showstoppers compilation. She also appears on the Dear Santa holiday compilation the United States Postal Service produced for Christmas 2005 with a rendition of "O Come All Ye Faithful" along side Alicia Keys, Nick Lachey and other well-known recording artists, and recorded a song for a 2006 Christmas album, Breaking For The Holidays called "It's Gonna Be A Cold Cold Christmas." Chaka Khan and fellow American Idol alumnus, Jon Peter Lewis also appear on this collection.

In early 2007, My Struggle was released to iTunes. Track listing for My Struggle is as follows:

Track Song Title
1 Gotta Have Faith
2 My Struggle
3 Do Yo Thang
4 B-A-B-Y-V (Interlude)
5 Dance 2nite
6 You Don't Impress Me
7 The One I Love
8 Bye-Bye

Filmography

Year Title Role Notes
2007 Still Green Chelsea Supporting Character
2006 The Tyra Banks Show Herself Guest Appearance
2005 Live with Regis Herself Aired June 9, 2005
2005 VH1's Big in '05 Herself Featured Artist

External links

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