Elliott Yamin (Arabic: اٍبراهيم يمين), (Ibrahim Yamin) (Hebrew: אליוט ימין) (born Efraym Elliott Yamin on July 20, 1978) is an American singer known for his hit single "Wait for You" and placing third on the fifth season of American Idol.
His self-titled album, released March 20, 2007, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Independent Albums chart and at No. 3 on the Billboard 200. The album was certified gold in the United States in October 2007. Retitled Wait for You, the album was released in Japan in May 2008 and certified gold in that country in September 2008.
Yamin also released two Christmas collections: Sounds of the Season: The Elliott Yamin Holiday Collection in October 2007 and My Kind of Holiday in October 2008.
Yamin's sophomore album, titled Fight for Love, was released on May 5, 2009. The album's first single, "Fight for Love", premiered on AOL Music on February 13, 2009.
Yamin was born in Los Angeles, California, to father Shaul Yamin, a Jewish Israeli of Iraqi Jewish descent, and mother Claudette Goldberg Yamin (d. March 31, 2008, age 65), a Jewish American of Ashkenazi (German Jewish) descent and former professional singer known for her "fiery spirit" and for receiving the "Golden Idol for Proudest Family Moment Award" from Ryan Seacrest during her son's American Idol competition. His family relocated to Richmond, Virginia when Yamin was 11, and his parents divorced when he was 14, his father returning to Los Angeles. Yamin has lived in Los Angeles with his girlfriend, model Jaime Paetz, since competing in the fifth season of American Idol in 2006.
Yamin has an older half-sister on his mother's side, Jodi Queen, a married mother of two children (Yamin's niece Sophia and nephew Jed) who lives in Encinitas (San Diego), California; and a younger brother, Scott Yamin, in pharmacy school at Campbell University in Buies Creek, North Carolina.
A history of ear infections as a child and eardrum replacement surgery at 13 left Yamin with 90% hearing loss in his right ear. He was diagnosed with Type I diabetes at the age of 16 and wears an insulin pump to help him manage his diabetes. Yamin is 5'6 tall.
Yamin first discovered his vocal talent while singing karaoke in his late teens. Although he had not been musically trained, he sang in a local jazz band and in amateur performance forums emulating Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston, and Donny Hathaway. He attended Douglas S. Freeman High School in Richmond, Virginia. Dropping out of high school in his sophomore year, he later achieved a high school GED while working at Foot Locker (in their management program), a pharmacy, and as an on-air disc jockey for local R&B radio station WCDX/Power 92 FM, using the name E-Dub — before auditioning for American Idol.
Yamin's day to day manager and spokesperson is Monet Corso, who also receives A&R credit on his first album.
Yamin auditioned in Boston, Massachusetts, singing Leon Russell's "A Song for You", but his audition was not aired. He performed the song again in front of the judges during Hollywood rounds, as well as Rascal Flatts's "Bless the Broken Road". During the group auditions, Yamin and his group performed "It's In Her Kiss" (aka "The Shoop Shoop Song") from The Hollies; Simon Cowell disliked the group performance, but Randy Jackson said Yamin was the best one in his group, and Paula Abdul said it was a good thing she could look past two left feet, in a way of saying he did not dance well but he could definitely sing. He was sent through by the judges and made it through to the finals of the competition.
[[File:Elliott_Yamin_at_the_White_House.jpg|thumb|Former President George W. Bush welcomes Elliott Yamin in the Oval Office at the White House on Friday, July 28, 2006, along with Yamin’s fellow performers, from left to right, Ace Young, Kellie Pickler, American Idol winner Taylor Hicks and Katharine McPhee.During one weekly rehearsal, guest coach Stevie Wonder told Yamin that he should definitely pursue a career in music. Simon Cowell stated that he thought Yamin was "potentially the best male vocalist" in five seasons on American Idol and later, after Yamin's "A Song for You" performance, he declared that it was a "vocal masterclass". His performance of "A Song for You" ranked third on Entertainment Weekly's countdown of the 16 best American Idol performances in the series history.
Yamin appeared on several talk shows, including the Tonight Show, Live with Regis and Kelly and the Fox News Channel program, Dayside. On June 11, 2006, he performed the national anthem a cappella at Game 2 of the NBA finals.
He also appeared in the annual Pop Tart-sponsored national American Idols LIVE! Tour between July and September 2006. The tour included a sold-out show at the Richmond Coliseum in Yamin's hometown.
On October 8, 2006, Yamin performed at the Virginia State Fair as the closing act. He was the first contestant from Season 5 to have his own solo concert. His backup band was the Little Memphis Blues Orchestra. There was no new material featured in the concert; instead, he sang nine cover songs.
|Taylor Hicks · Katharine McPhee · Elliott Yamin · Chris Daughtry · Paris Bennett · Kellie Pickler · Ace Young · Bucky Covington · Mandisa · Lisa Tucker · Kevin Covais · Melissa McGhee|