Q&A with X Factor reject Kash Dholliwar

7 Feb

Kash Dholliwar, X Factor Auditionee

On the 11 September 2010 Kash Dholliwar’s performance of Closer by Ne-Yo was broadcast to the nation. He had the look and the confidence, but unfortunately not the X factor; his performance was out of tune, out of time and painful to listen to. Kash was portrayed as a ladies’ man with an arrogant swagger: he had the diamond earrings (not real diamonds), the BMW and the designer (well, River Island) sunglasses.

When I caught up with him, he was thankfully no longer wearing sunglasses indoors and he has now turned 22. However some things never change: the white gold not-quite-diamond earrings were still in place and above all, Kash still insists that he is a talented singer and he will continue to try and make a name for himself in the music industry.

  • Why did you decide to go one the X Factor?

I’d done two charity events and I’d raised quite a lot of money and I’ve always had the confidence to perform in front of people. I guess when I did audition a lot of my family and a lot of friends said I should go for it.

  • Can you describe the audition process?

There were three audition rounds where I had to sing acapella to the producers. They were happy with my performance and obviously I was happy with my performance as well. I auditioned two years ago, and I got to the third round, but not through to the judges, so that’s one of the reasons I auditioned again.

The first audition you just sing for about 10/15 seconds and as soon as they think you’re good enough they put you through. Second audition you get invited back and you have to go through a huge queue again as if it was your first. I went through that, that was just normal music producers like Sony, people like that. On the second round if you get through it’s quite intense because everybody is in a room and you have to walk out with a red slip, if you’ve got the red slip then it means that you’ve got through and if you don’t you’re out. The ones that have got them, you know they want to show it off.

Luckily I got the red slip and got through and on the third round you sing in front of Simon Cowell’s music producers and they started filming it as well, I think I did really well on that, I did that without music, and I got invited back then for the final round two months later. I started the auditions in April and you get invited back then in July.

  • What went wrong for you on stage?

When I got to the final audition, well there were 2,000 people there and that was really bad. I’ve sung in front of 1,000 people, but when you look at so many people especially people like Simon Cowell – I guess I did get quite nervous. But on top of that as soon as I started singing I didn’t sing in time and it just went downhill for me there. It just didn’t go the right way.

  • Is the Kash we saw on TV the real Kash?

On that day they ask you to do certain things, certain roles, ask you to do certain walks and stuff and from looking at it now reflecting back I think they do a “good” and they do a “bad” because they don’t know what you’re going to do on stage.

My “good” part was all the charity work and everything I’ve done. My main priority is to make a difference in the world really, and somebody that I look up to would be somebody like Michael Jackson. He performed so much good music but actually reflected on his music as well and he did a lot of charity work and stuff and that’s kind of the person that I would like to be viewed as.

But unfortunately the way that they filmed it showed I was quite an arrogant type of person, but a lot of people that know me know that I don’t do anything like that, I’m completely different.

  • Did they edit your audition?

I did actually do a second song, everyone in the crowd said that they were all gutted and that I should’ve got through on my second, acapella song, but the first one wasn’t very impressive.

I thought it couldn’t have been that bad, and when it was shown on TV a lot of people did stick up for me and said “no he didn’t sound like that live, that has been edited”. Even though it wasn’t in time it wasn’t as bad as that. They’ve been caught for tweaking voices haven’t they?  I wonder if they tried to make me sound bad for part of the show.

  • Why did you decide to sing Closer?

I went to a local recording company who I’d been to before and said,  “I’ve got to do X Factor can you help me”. I had my normal songs, Craig David – Rendezvous, East 17 – And if you ever, so I did those two tracks and I actually sang them really well because I’ve always sung them and I was very familiar with them, especially acapella as well, there is no music so it kind of keeps the pressure off because it is just however your voice gets pitched.

When I practised for the first auditions I practised for a month or two, which does make a massive difference because you can change your vocal pitch and you can learn the scales and stuff, but after the third audition I didn’t continue to practice. The week before they rang me and said you’re going to be on our show and I thought “oh my god what am I going to do, how am I going to make myself better?” So I went to this guy who is in the industry and he said “if you do Closer you can get the crowd bouncing, you are going to need the crowd on your side”.

Secondly he said that it would be the easiest song for me to sing to get it in time. On that mic it did actually sound really good, my friends said out of the songs that I’d sang they thought I should sing Closer.

  • Were you nervous?

I walked on to stage and it was really scary when I walked on, but then because I had such a massive crowd applauding me I felt comfortable because they were on my side, but I felt nervous as well because I didn’t want to let them down. The first impressions messed it up for me. If I’d started with Michael Jackson maybe I’d have got through as I wouldn’t have had the music in the background. But I guess you live and learn.

I did have a chat with Simon, they didn’t show it on TV, but I said, “I want you to see my potential, I can do it, but I was a little bit nervous”, I said, “you can get me there” and I’ll always remember this, he said,  “I can’t get you there. You need to get yourself there.”

  • How did your friends and family react to the audition?

On the day my friends were really gutted and they were really shocked because they didn’t expect that. I was just really gutted and I went back to that recording studio guy, I wanted to blame him, but I couldn’t because it was my choice at the end of the day.

When we watched it on TV I didn’t know what to expect  and then within the first 10/15 seconds I had a lot of friend requests on Facebook but my family were all phoning and they were all gutted for me. They were like, “what’s wrong? You normally sing perfect.”

People have asked me would I audition for it again and I think yes I would but I need to go back and give Simon Cowell what he expected because he even said, “I expected more from you.”

  • What do you think of the “comedy” auditions that the X Factor shows?

I think you do get the funny ones. Some of them were there practising at the auditions and we were all laughing at them, but you can’t help it, that’s entertainment for you.

I don’t know what the hell they did with me but somehow I appeared to be really funny and it was actually really entertaining.

  • Who did you want to win?

I wanted Matt Cardle to win, he’s good, and he deserves it.

  • Do you regret going on the X Factor?

I never regret anything that I’ve done in my past, everything in my life happens for a reason and that has actually opened doors for me. I’ve had a lot of charity organisations contact me and ask me to do charity work with them and I have launched my website, because I have recently gone back to that music studio and I am starting to train myself.

I may not be ready for next year’s audition, but I certainly will be back.


2 Responses to “Q&A with X Factor reject Kash Dholliwar”

  1. jessica May 14, 2011 at 9:28 pm #

    He’s not a reject! He just made a simple mistake; if he just sang without the music he would of been great! xx


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