She entered Platinum Hit desperate for a break in the music business.
Over the course of the competition she made references to a difficult childhood, siblings she wanted to help care for and a mother with health problems who had sacrificed much to see her daughter succeed in music.
“I saw too much too young,” Sonyae said during Friday’s finale, breaking down in tears as she explained how music serves as her therapy.
Well, Sonyae will get a shot at that music career after being tabbed the winner of Platinum Hit, a victory that comes complete with a $100,000 cash prize, a recording contract and a songwriting deal.
It was a victory well deserved. Over the 10 weeks of the show, the 23-year-old from Newark, N.J., had clearly established herself as one of the strongest lyricists.
That doesn’t mean her victory Friday night was an easy one; I’m not even sure her song, “My Religion,” was the night’s best.
Scotty Granger, a creative director for Jordin Sparks of American Idol fame, contributed “Beautiful You.”
It was a personal song about self-acceptance from the perspective of a gay male who was shunned by much of his family because he’s gay.
One judge called Scotty a master of melody, and it was a fitting description of a guy who proved to be Sonyae’s strongest competition.
But the surprise in the finale came in the form of “Come Alive,” a catchy pop song from Jes Hudak, the dark horse among the show’s final three.
The song was about an ex-boyfriend who failed to realize his potential, and it was the most pop-friendly of the songs performed.
But I have the feeling the judges awarded the victory based more on 10 weeks worth of songwriting than a single song, and rightfully so.
So congrats to Sonyae. And to host Jewel and lead judge Kara DioGuardi for putting on an entertaining show.
I get the feeling we just watched the last episode of Platinum Hit. The show was not a ratings success for Bravo. By mid- season it had been bumped from Monday to Friday night. A couple of weeks later, Bravo stopped rebroadcasting episodes in the middle of the week.
But Kara and Jewel weren’t bashful about critiquing their songwriters. That alone was a refreshing change after the judge-nothing approach we witnessed on American Idol in season 10.