Meet the Mountaineer Idol: Scott Link
Published: Thursday, November 1, 2012
Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012 10:11
Scott Link is no rookie when it comes to the Mountaineer Idol competition.
In last year’s competition, Link progressed to the fourth round before being sent home by the judges. Though he feels this year’s competition is tougher than ever, Link is determined to give it his all to take the title in the final round.
"Last year – at a certain point – everyone was really good. But this year, week one, it was like, ‘Oh my God, everyone is so good!’" Link said. "I really have to focus on myself rather than everyone else, and that’s what I think got me last year."
Link grew up in Patton, Pa., and attended Point Park University and Belmont University in Nashville Tenn. before transferring to West Virginia University last year.
Of the three finalists, Link is notorious for his indecisiveness. When it comes to choosing his songs, he has been known to change his mind several times a week.
"I love working with Scott because he’s so passionate about his performances and always strives to do his best. He always wants to pick the best song he can for himself, and he always sends me about 6-8 different song choices per week," Mountaineer Idol intern Kelsey Montgomery said. "I don’t blame him though, he wants to win.
"Scott has been great to work with and always so willing to volunteer for any additional performing opportunities that we have."
Link’s love for music and performance grew out of his love for singing along with his favorite Disney tunes as a kid.
After following the first season of "American Idol," Link decided that performing was a path he wished to pursue.
"There’s actually a very embarrassing video of me when I was four, with a broken arm, singing ‘I Just Can’t Wait to be King’ in the living room with my sister," Link said. "After that, I remember American Idol started coming on. The first season – that’s when I decided that I would really love to do that."
Link grew up in a strictly country music household, beginning his musical influence with a wholesome twang, although Link discovered his love for pop music when artists such as Brittany Spears and Justin Timberlake rose to fame. His secret affair could not be hidden forever, and it wasn’t long until his parents discovered their son had been turned.
"When I was really little my favorite singers were Garth Brooks and Shania Twain, and I liked Shania Twain – that was the first CD I ever had," Link said. "I remember in my little book, I wrote a letter to Justin Timberlake and Brittany Spears, and my dad found the letters and read it.
"And he’s like, ‘What would Shania think?’"
Musical theater and classic rock round out Link’s interests, though Link still enjoys artist like Justin Timberlake and Beyonce for both their vocal talent and their superior stage presence.
The path to success hasn’t been easy for Link, as he is the only finalist to have tried out for American Idol. Nerves got the best of him, and he was unable to advance.
While not every audition or performance has been a gem, Link has the ability to take even just one compliment out of a negative experience and use it as fuel to keep working toward his goals.
"The first time I sang in front of anyone was a musical audition my freshman year, and I did terribly," Link said. "It was a terrible, terrible audition and someone said, ‘Your voice is kind of good’ … That was it for me. Ever since then, I have been working hard."
In anticipation of Sunday’s competition, Link will go through the complicated process of picking and practicing his songs of choice. Link is aiming to give the judges a little variety and will make his decision accordingly.
"I’m just really trying to concentrate on what I’ve gotten good critiques on, (and) what people didn’t like as much. (I’m) just going through that and picking songs that are going to accent different parts of my voice," Link said. "I want to pick three different songs that will showcase different parts of my voice.
"I do feel like I have a very varied voice – that I can do different things – and I want to show that off with my song choices this week."