James Percell, a homeless man from the Bronx, New York, has become a YouTube sensation. According to the New York Post, the video has more than 1 million views.
Percell, 49-year-old said he auditioned for “X-Factor,” but was turned down because he was homeless. “The judge . . . said, ‘How can we contact you?’ [But] once he knew I was homeless, his persona changed. He said, ‘Well, listen, maybe next time.” Parcell said he was also turned down by “The Voice”, but says he’ll try again the next go-around.
Parcell told The Post:
He was once a backup singer for R&B groups such as Jodeci and the hip-hoppers C+C Music Factory.
Percell said he wrote “Everything Must Change’’ hoping to give it to Michael Jackson, but then the Gloved One died.” When I was going through [tough] things, I just kept hearing the melody. I wrote these few bars, and I wanted to get it to Michael Jackson.”
Percell, a father of seven children says that he has been homeless since he left his parent’s home at the age of 18. This May, he moved in with the mother of his children. He survives by taking odd jobs and modeling gigs.
Parcell said, “I live for the music. I live on the edge. I took the wrong path. I ended up homeless chasing a dream.”