Josh Levi is best known as one of the top finalists on “X-Factor” but he’s now part of Island Records’ newest boy band, Citizen Four. Having performed on Broadway as a child, performing is in his blood. I caught up with Josh to talk new music, what he learned from his time on TV and what sets Citizen Four apart from other boy bands.
You’ve spent time on TV (“Friday Night Lights”) and on stage (Twist). When were you bit by the entertainment bug? How did you decide which avenues to explore?
When I was 4 years old, music was the first thing I ever fell in love, besides waffles. And the first albums I ever listened to were Brandy, Michael Jackson and Beyoncé. After singing in church at a really young age, I found these artists at 9 years old and knew I wanted to affect people and the world the way they did. I explored every avenue organically–and according to what felt good. A combination/concoction of singing, dancing and acting are all things I try to morph into a solitary thing.
What did your time on “X-Factor” teach you about yourself that you didn’t know going in?
It taught me it was possible to be fearless, possible to trust yourself, possible to succeed despite doubt, possible to win though circumstances that may convince you otherwise, and possible to kill it at 14 years old.
What sets your band, Citizen Four, apart from other boy bands?
Citizen Four is authentic. We aren’t trying to be anything but ourselves and we reflect that in our music and art. Each of us are really individuals and together, we have a diverse range of perspectives.
You’re on the forefront of content creators online. How does YouTube allow you to connect to people in a way traditional concert settings don’t?
YouTube is literally a digital and accessible portal to an audience. It allows me to connect, create and share music intimately with fans. My channel is 100% led by what my fans want to see from me. A concert isn’t as conversational as YouTube, but it is a rad live encounter with people. It allows me to give and share every part of myself to an audience.
What’s coming up?
Taking over the world, helping to change society and culture, growing with my fans, and Citizen Four attempting to shift the phenomenon of groups/bands.