Jason Castro (singer)

Jason René Castro (born March 25, 1987) is an American acoustic/folk-pop singer and songwriter. He was the fourth place finalist on season seven of American Idol. After Idol, he signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records, and his self-titled debut album was released on April 13, 2010.

Jason Castro
Jason Castro Disney Idol.jpg
Castro in the American Idol Experience motorcade at Walt Disney World
Background information
Birth nameJason René Castro
Born (1987-03-25) March 25, 1987 (age 32)
Dallas, Texas, United States
OriginRowlett, Texas
GenresAcoustic, pop,
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter
InstrumentsVocals, guitar, drums, ukulele
Years active2007–present
LabelsAtlantic, Word
Associated actsKeeping Lions/Charlemagne, The Heavy Steadies, Caitlin Crosby, Castro

Early yearsEdit

Castro was born in Dallas, Texas, and raised in Rowlett, Texas.[1] His parents, René and Betsy Castro, are Colombian and also had two other children, Michael and Jackeline.[2] Their father, René, is an architectural swimming pool designer.[3]

He attended Rowlett High School where he was a left winger on his school's soccer team and an honor student. He received a 1340 out of 1600 on his SAT.[4] Castro was a junior majoring in Construction Science at Texas A&M University in College Station on a full academic scholarship when he auditioned for American Idol.[5]

Castro has sported dreadlocks since his senior year of high school.[6] In 2014, symbolic of a spiritual reawakening, he cut his dreadlocks and has since worn his hair much shorter.[7]

Castro performed as a drummer with the rock band Charlemagne,[8] which later became Keeping Lions.[9] He has stated that his musical influences include Ray LaMontagne, Ben Harper, Bob Marley, Carlos Vives and Kirk Baxley.[10]

American IdolEdit

Castro during the American Idols Live! Tour, 2008


Castro auditioned for American Idol in Dallas, Texas, singing the Ray LaMontagne version of the song "Crazy". During a March 17, 2008 appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, judge Simon Cowell chose Castro as one of his four favorites in the competition, along with David Cook, David Archuleta, and Brooke White.[11] On April 12, Ryan Seacrest and the three judges appeared in Larry King Live, Larry King revealed the results of his website poll which asked "Whom do you want to win American Idol?" and said that Castro was in the lead.[12]

Castro played the guitar during the Top 24 performance night when he sang "(What A Day for a Daydream)". He was also the first contestant to play the ukulele on the show, played the instrument while singing Over The Rainbow.[13] Castro also sang in Spanish in a combination of Sting's "Fragile" and "Fragilidad" on March 25, 2008. He was voted off the competition on May 7, 2008.[14]


Castro's rendition of the song "Hallelujah," which he performed on American Idol, led to a surge of popularity for the Jeff Buckley cover of the Leonard Cohen song from the iTunes Store, propelling it to the number-one spot on the iTunes singles chart.[15] Buckley's version of the song sold 178,000 digital downloads in the week following Castro's performance, to debut at number one on Billboard's Hot Digital Songs chart.[16] According to the March 22, 2008, issue of Billboard, this was the highest boost in digital sales a song had ever received after being performed by a contestant on American Idol. It was the first time Buckley's version of the song charted on a Billboard chart, as well as the first U.S. number-one song on any chart for Buckley. Jason Castro's rendition of the song propelled Jeff Buckley's version to be certified gold and platinum as a single on April 22, 2008.[17]

Castro's version of the song "Hallelujah" briefly appeared in the number-one spot on the iTunes chart before it was removed due to the producers of American Idol not wanting any contestant to be favored.[18]


Week # Theme Song choice Original artist Order # Result
Top 24 (12 Men) 1960s "Daydream" The Lovin' Spoonful 11 Safe
Top 20 (10 Men) 1970s "I Just Want to Be Your Everything" Andy Gibb 2 Safe
Top 16 (8 Men) 1980s "Hallelujah" Leonard Cohen 7 Safe
Top 12 Lennon–McCartney "If I Fell" The Beatles 4 Safe
Top 11 The Beatles "Michelle" The Beatles 8 Safe
Top 10 Year they Were Born "Fragile" Sting 2 Bottom 31
Top 9 Dolly Parton "Travelin' Thru" Dolly Parton 4 Safe
Top 8 Inspirational Music "Over the Rainbow" Judy Garland 3 Safe
Top 7 Mariah Carey "I Don't Wanna Cry" Mariah Carey 7 Safe
Top 6 Andrew Lloyd Webber "Memory" Elaine Paige 2 Safe
Top 5 Neil Diamond "Forever in Blue Jeans"
"September Morn"
Neil Diamond 1
Top 4 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame "I Shot the Sheriff"
"Mr. Tambourine Man"
Bob Marley
Bob Dylan
  • ^1 Castro was the first person declared to be safe on this elimination night.


After his elimination Castro made a number of television appearances including on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Castro signing autographs during the American Idols Live! Tour, 2008

Castro returned to the Idol stage for the seventh-season finale and was the only top-12 finalist who performed a solo. He sang "Hallelujah".

When he returned to his hometown of Rockwall, Texas, Thursday, May 29, 2008, he had the experience of having the day declared "Jason Castro Day." Castro was honored with a parade and a ceremony/concert,[19] one of the largest events in the city's history.[20][21] Castro completed the American Idols LIVE! Tour 2008 with his fellow contestants during the summer. The tour ran from July 1, 2008, to September 13, 2008.

He recorded "Hallelujah" in Toronto, Canada, for an indie film, Amar a morir, which premiered in the spring of 2009.[22][23] In 2008 he also took part in the "I Am Second" campaign, openly discussing his Christian faith.[24] Castro signed a management deal with Hard8Mgt.[25]

On November 29, 2008, Castro performed a live concert with his band, The Heavy Steadies, at the Flytrap Music Hall in Tulsa, Oklahoma; the concert included new songs from his album. On December 15, Castro released the Christmas song, "White Christmas" as a free download through Amazon.com as a gift for his fans. On December 24, 2008, Castro performed "White Christmas" at Lake Pointe Church's Christmas program. Castro performed the full version of "Hallelujah" at the world premiere of Amar A Morir on January 23 at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.[26]

On April 12, 2010, on Atlantic Records he released his self-titled album Jason Castro. He worked with songwriter, producer, and Idol judge, Kara DioGuardi and producer John Fields.[27] Fellow Atlantic Records artist Serena Ryder appears with Castro on a duet titled "You Can Always Come Home". Castro sang "Over the Rainbow" and his second single "That's What I'm Here For" at the wedding of The Bachelor stars Jason Mesnick and Molly Malaney on February 27, 2010, for ABC's taping of The Bachelor: Jason and Molly’s Wedding.[28]

In July 2010, Castro appeared in two episodes of The Bold and the Beautiful as himself.[29]

Castro appeared in a small role in the GMC television movie The Perfect Summer in 2012.[30]

2009–2010: Debut album, EP, singles and promotionEdit

Castro in the Philippines to promote his EP and album

On August 18, 2009, Castro performed his new single "Let's Just Fall in Love Again" on a live video webchat from his website, as well another song titled "It Matters to Me." Castro's label, Atlantic Records, released presales of the album and offered the single as a free download to buyers.[31] Castro's album was to be released in November 2009 but was pushed to an early 2010 release date. "Let'sJust Fall in Love Again" entered Billboard's Heatseekers Songs chart at No. 15 and Hot Digital Songs at No. "Let's Just Fall in Love Again" was used by Overstock.com for a television commercial. 57.[32] A music video for the single premiered on October 14, 2009. Castro released a debut EP in January 2010 titled The Love Uncompromised. Castro completed a tour with Matt Hires and Caitlin Crosby and traveled to Malaysia, Singapore and The Philippines to promote his EP and album. He then toured a second time with band Camera Can't Lie and his younger brother Michael as his opening acts to promote his album.[citation needed]

2012–2013: Only a MountainEdit

Castro released a five-song EP on August 28, 2012.[33] His third album, Only a Mountain, was released on January 15, 2013.[34]

Music with younger siblingsEdit

Castro has released covers on iTunes with his two younger siblings, Michael and Jackie, both of whom are also singer-songwriters. The three siblings also formed a group called Castro, and in May 2015 they released their first music video for the original song "Rock and Roll."[35] The band released their first album Diamond Dreams with Fervent Records in 2016. Jackie left Castro in mid 2018 to pursue a solo career in Nashville, Tennessee. It is unclear if the brothers will continue with the band.

Personal lifeEdit

Castro was the love interest of Cheyenne Kimball on her MTV reality show, Cheyenne and was also featured in her music video for "Hanging On."[36]

On October 31 on Halloween in 2009, Castro proposed to Mandy Mayhall, his girlfriend of a year and a half. They were friends in high school and began dating in 2008.[37] Mayhall made a cameo in Castro's music video for "Let's Just Fall in Love Again."

Castro and Mayhall were married on January 2, 2010, in his hometown and now reside in Dallas.[38] The couple's first daughter, Madeline Emilia, was born August 28, 2011.[39] Their second daughter, Hazel Lucia, was born on June 3, 2015.[40] The couple's third daughter, Josephine Alma, was born December 1, 2017.[41]


When a former Castro fansite erroneously claimed that Castro's charity was GLOW Ministries, the organization based in Zeeland, Michigan received a lot of donations and attention to their cause.[42][43]

Castro's father had been instrumental in starting a soccer ministry at Lake Pointe Church to reach out to the community. Jason played soccer in high school and has been to Russia three times with Higher Goal Soccer Ministry.[44]

On December 13, Castro performed alongside Patti LaBelle for a Christmas concert in Garland, Texas, benefiting the Best Education Foundation, an organization that supports the city's school district.[45] He also auctioned himself off for charity courtesy of the Grammy Foundation and MusiCares.[46]



  • The Perfect Summer (2012)
  • Jason Castro The Perfect Tour (2015)


  1. ^ Dinges, Gary (February 13, 2008). "Five Texans make 'Idol's' top 24". Austin360. The Austin American-Statesman.
  2. ^ "Q&A: American Idol's Jason Castro". Latina. May 16, 2008. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
  3. ^ "Jason Castro: Aggies Are We Interview" (video). Aggies Are We. February 18, 2008.
  4. ^ "'Idol' star Jason Castro is no mental lightweight".
  5. ^ Michael Granberry. "TV – GuideLive". GuideLive.
  6. ^ "Castro draws local Idol following". Kenny Green. The Mesquite News Star. March 27, 2008.
  7. ^ Wishon, Jennifer (June 19, 2014). "What Happened to Idol's Dreadlocked Jason Castro?". cbn.com.
  8. ^ Atlas, Darla. "'American Idol' hopeful from Rockwall has more hair-time than airtime".
  9. ^ Philpot, Robert (February 19, 2008). "The Latest 'Idol' Boasts North Texas Ties". Star-Telegram.
  10. ^ Jason Castro- Top 10 Contestants – American Idol
  11. ^ "Simon Cowell with Oprah saying Jason Castro is a front-runner to win American Idol". Archived from the original on March 25, 2008.
  12. ^ "CNN Larry King Live 'Idol gives back'".
  13. ^ American Idol Season 7 Top 8 Results Night
  14. ^ "Texan hated to leave show".
  15. ^ "Jeff Buckley's 'Hallelujah' Becomes America's Number One Digital Song". PR Newswire. Retrieved December 25, 2015.
  16. ^ "Charts". Billboard.
  17. ^ "Jeff Buckley – Chart history | Billboard". Billboard. Retrieved December 25, 2015.
  18. ^ "Latina Magazine interviews Jason Castro".
  19. ^ Collins, Roger. "Jason Castro Concert". Iomusic News. Archived from the original on January 16, 2008. Retrieved December 19, 2008.
  20. ^ "Neighborsgo Community News – Schools Information – Local Crime Reports – Events".
  21. ^ Rockwall Herald
  22. ^ The Canadian Press: American Idol also-ran Jason Castro recorded track for upcoming Mexican film Archived August 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  23. ^ Welcome to AccessAtlanta! | AccessAtlanta
  24. ^ "American Idol' Daily: What's on Jason Castro's mind". Los Angeles Times. December 4, 2008. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
  25. ^ "Jason Castro signs management deal".
  26. ^ Brett Leigh Dicks (January 24, 2009). "The Santa Barbara Independent "A Grand Hallelujah for Amar A Morir " by Film Fest 2009". Santa Barbara Independent. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
  27. ^ mj santilli. "Jason Castro Signs with Atlantic Records, Writing and Recording with Kara DioGuardi – VIDEO • mjsbigblog". mjsbigblog.
  28. ^ "It's Official: Bachelor's Jason And Molly Get Hitched! – PEOPLE TV Watch". People. February 27, 2010. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
  29. ^ Santilli, MJ. "Jason Castro Sings 'Love Uncompromised' on The Bold and the Beautiful". mjsbigblog. Retrieved October 19, 2015.
  30. ^ "Jesusfreakhideout.com Music News, May 2013: JASON CASTRO COMMENCED SHOOTING FOR THE GMC MOVIE "THE PERFECT SUMMER" ON MAY 13".
  31. ^ "Jason Castro Pre-Sales Available Now!". Atlantic Records. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
  32. ^ "'Idol' Alum Jason Castro Plots Tour". Billboard.
  33. ^ "Jason Castro Previewing New Album With EP Release ::Jason Castro News ::antiMusic.com".
  34. ^ http://www.cmspin.com/newsmanager/anmviewer.asp?a=6708&z=26
  35. ^ "Castro Releases 'Rock And Roll' Music Video". Indie Vision Music.
  36. ^ biancaxo (June 21, 2006). "Cheyenne (TV Series 2006– )". IMDb.
  37. ^ "Jason Castro Engaged to Girlfriend Mandy Mayhall". News.rin.ru. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
  38. ^ "'American Idol' Alum Jason Castro Gets Married! – Jason Castro". Zimbio. Retrieved April 18, 2010.
  39. ^ "AMERICAN IDOL' ALUM JASON CASTRO WELCOMES BABY GIRL!". Latina. Retrieved August 30, 2011.
  40. ^ mj santilli. "Jason Castro & Wife Mandy Welcome Baby Daughter PHOTO". mjsbigblog.
  41. ^ https://www.instagram.com/p/BcSVkg0BHtG/
  42. ^ "Sudden rise in donations thanks to Jason Castro".
  43. ^ "GLOWing mix-up benefits local ministry".
  44. ^ "Faith and family produced this American Idol finalist" (PDF).
  45. ^ Helmick-Richardson, Peggy (December 2008 – January 2009). "Jason Castro, National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences-winner Patti LaBelle, to perform 'An American Christmas" Concert Dec. 13". LakeView Image. Moonlight Graphics.
  46. ^ "MusiCares Grammy Auction, Bid on a VIP Lunch with Jason Castro".

External linksEdit