Vonzell Monique Solomon (born March 18, 1984), nicknamed 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.
Born in Baxley, Georgia, Solomon's family relocated to Fort Myers, Florida when she was an infant. Her parents are Alice and Larry Goethie; Solomon uses her mother's maiden name professionally. She has one older sister, Zanobra, and two brothers, Kendall and Gabriel.
Solomon 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, Solomon 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.
Solomon auditioned for the fourth season of American Idol in Orlando, Florida, her second audition 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 Solomon 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. Solomon 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 Solomon to perform, the judges selected Donna Summer's "On the Radio" and her own choice was Aretha Franklin's "Chain of Fools." 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.
After American IdolEdit
Solomon is the CEO of 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 Solomon was planning a recording which went into development hell, and not much has been heard about it since. 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 Solomon's Fort Myers 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.
In June 2008, Vonzell starred as one of the headliners for a live music show in Branson, MO, named "America's Favorite Finalists". The show featured 6 top 12 American Idol Finalists performing their own music, cover songs and group numbers. The show ran at the Grand Palace and was produced by Steve Drummond, America's Favorite Finanlists.
Solomon 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.
Solomon 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 2 alumnus Rickey Smith as the Tinman, and Season 4 alumni Scott Savol, as the Lion, and Mikalah Gordon, as Dorothy
Solomon recently released an EP, True Story, on January 24, 2012 on iTunes. She also released a single called "Dirt Bag" on March 1, 2010.
Solomon was detained at Southwest Florida International Airport on June 10, 2008 after security found an unloaded gun, which she is licensed to carry, in her luggage. Solomon wasn't arrested and later completed a pre-trial diversion program. No charges were filed.
Personal LifeEditSolomon is now just friends with season 9 semifinalist Todrick Hall. She had appeared as the evil stepmother in his music video for his song Cinderonce in 2013 and in many more videos. She now has her own YouTube channel. They don't date anymore because Todrick now has a boyfriend.
- True Story (2012)
- My Struggle (2006)
- "Dirt Bag" (2010)
|Carrie Underwood · Bo Bice · Vonzell Solomon · Anthony Fedorov · Scott Savol · Constantine Maroulis · Anwar Robinson · Nadia Turner · Nikko Smith · Jessica Sierra · Mikalah Gordon · Lindsey Cardinale|