In just few short months, Joshua Rogers has become a household name to gospel music lovers across the nation. The 18 year old winner of BET’s highly successful reality singing competition, Sunday Best, has captured the hearts of millions as the “young buck” who took home the crown. The Greeleyville, SC native put the small town on the map as he belted out tunes each week for the studio audience, viewers across the country, and gospel music superstars - vocal coach Kim Burrell, judges CeCe Winans, Donnie McClurkin, Yolanda Adams, and host Kirk Franklin.
Since his August 2012 win, Rogers has transitioned into the gospel music industry with the ease of a seasoned veteran. Rogers’ Music World Gospel debut release, Well Done premiered at the top of the Billboard charts, landing him at #1 in his first week of sales. Rogers, who describes himself as a traditional/contemporary gospel artist, has been intentionally diligent about taking his time with his music. In his words, he seeks a career that lasts a lifetime and is committed to putting in the work that it takes to get there. Rogers comments, “My music is more than just a groove or something that is appeasing to the ear, I want to take people back, usher them into worship, and connect to the core of who they are.”
The gifted young singer confesses his family always encouraged him to sing, but didn’t sugarcoat things either. Rogers says, "My mom tells me all the time, boy you didn't always sound good …” but Rogers stuck with it and worked diligently on his craft. After graduating from high school, Rogers competed in a local talent competition and won the grand prize. After winning the competition, he was encouraged to audition for Sunday Best and did just that. He and his family drove to Atlanta to audition for a slot on the show along with 10,000 other competitors. Rogers went on to win the title of Sunday Best, making him the first male and the youngest contestant to do so.
Rogers admits that a lot of who he is now as an artist came from the rigorous training that he received as a contestant on BET’s Sunday Best. Rogers recalls, “Before Sunday Best, I rarely paid close attention to the way I connected with audiences when I sang. Since the show, I’ve become more in tune with how I convey the message I am singing about. My vocal quality has also improved because of the regular training I received while on the show.” He remembers how he was faced with both positive and negative feedback saying, “When you really want something, you take all the criticism that comes your way. You want what you want and you do what you must to reach that goal.”
Joshua Rogers’ dedication to excellence paid off not only in winning the show, but also in building the necessary groundwork for a firm foundation in the gospel music industry. Rogers was fully embraced by the gospel music industry’s gatekeepers after his win and has continued those relationships. Rogers shares, “It’s such a great and inexplicable feeling to be able to work with artists that have been in the industry for years; it’s mind blowing to know that they respect me.” Rogers has more great things in store. Having just taped his first appearance on TBN’s National broadcast of Praise The Lord; Rogers is currently prepping for his first performance on BET’s 2013 Celebration of Gospel. The singer is also prepping to launch his own radio station on uGospel in the coming months. In addition to that, Rogers is in the studio, working on music for his next full length release and travels weekly across the nation ministering to audiences through song.
Through it all, Rogers remains humble and committed to all that lies ahead of him. He makes it a point to be home every Wednesday to attend his church’s weekly bible study and while he is on the road he ensures that he creates time for spiritual rhythms such as praying and fasting. Rogers lives by his favorite scripture, Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Rogers plans to pursue college in the near future, likely majoring in musical performance. The singer has already made a mark in his home town – September 13th has been deemed Joshua Rogers Day in Manning, South Carolina. It’s undeniably certain, that his mark is being made worldwide in gospel music. Follow him @thejoshuarogers.