Matt Mason Is CMT’s ‘Next Superstar’ of Country Music
Fans filled the Franklin, Tenn. tourist spot, The Factory on Friday evening, June 10, for the live season finale of CMT's reality singing competition, 'Next Superstar.' The two finalists who survived the competition were modern day outlaw Matt Mason and the soulful Steven Clawson.
The pair of singers opened the show in a sing-off, swapping between Mason's take on Johnny Cash's 'I Walk the Line,' 'Get Rhythm,' 'Folsom Prison Blues' and 'Ring of Fire,' while Clawson sang parts of Elvis' 'Trouble,' 'Blue Suede Shoes,' 'Jailhouse Rock' and 'Burning Love.'
Following their electrifying performances, Mason and Clawson were reunited with the other eight contestants who America was introduced to over the series. The show's host, Thea Andrews, spoke with each of the contestants and rehashed some of their most memorable times spent together in the house.
Clawson then took the stage after a video recap of his journey on the show, for his performance of 'You Bring Me Back' -- an original tune that fans were introduced to during his run on the series.
Mason was up next, and performed his countrified version of Matchbox 20's 'Unwell,' which impressed the judges and fans alike when he sang it during the show's debut episode back in April.
After a commercial break that felt like a lifetime for Mason and Clawson, the verdict revealed who fans voted to be country music's 'Next Superstar.' When Mason's name was announced, streamers burst into the air and the room exploded with excitement, as everyone jumped to their feet. Mason's family then joined him on stage to celebrate his victory and the exciting journey that he will now embark on with his career. Mason then performed his debut single, 'After Midnight.'
From the beginning of his journey on 'Next Superstar,' Mason always stayed true to who he was as an artist, all while giving the fans what they come to expect from a country music star.
"If you can touch three people out of 5,000 with one song, then have someone come up to you and say they've been through the same thing and that song meant something to them, that's what music should be about," Mason tells Taste of Country. "It's not just about making money or how good you can look on TV or on camera. It's about singing something to people that does something to them. To me, artists in today's world will cut anything just because it might be good on radio. That's not what it's all about. It's not about how many No. 1 songs you have."
"One of my favorite acts, the Dave Matthews Band," Mason continues. "I dont know if they've ever had a No. 1 song, but he's singing stuff that's real. If you go to one of their concerts, every single song is being sung back by the crowd. Bruce Springsteen hasn't had many No. 1 songs, and I know I'm going to rock music now, but those guys are some of my favorite artists who are still singing stuff that means something. I'm just so driven to grow some b---- and write something that splits a room, you know? Either they love it or hate it. Everybody isn't going to like you, but the ones that do, you want to make sure they stick with you. You've got to feed whatever is working for you."
In addition to being signed to Warner Music Nashville's label roster, along side the likes of Blake Shelton, Big and Rich, Faith Hill, Gloriana, Frankie Ballard and more, Mason will also join Luke Bryan, Josh Thompson and Lee Brice on this fall's CMT Tour. Mason's 'After Midnight,' as well as 'Good Year for the Outlaw,' are now available for purchase through iTunes.