A TV performance last week for singer/songwriter Christina Perri served as a sort of homecoming, although it did not involve traveling back to Philadelphia. Perri took the stage on Fox’s “So You Think You Can Dance.” It was on that show, four years ago, when Perri received the most improbable break of her young career.
The “Human” singer was born in Pennsylvania and moved to California in pursuit of music stardom, or at the very least, a sustainable job writing and recording. A friend of hers gave a choreographer at “SYTYCD” a demo of “Jar of Hearts,” and the show immediately wanted to use it for a number.
“I was like Cinderella, honestly,” Perri recalled of her experience during a phone conversation with “Ralphie Tonight.” “I was just a waitress sitting in the audience, like they played a minute and a half of [‘Jar of Hearts’]; I thought it was really cool. I never heard my voice that loud before.”
Perri was an unsigned artist who didn’t even have a mastered copy of “Jar” at the time producers requested it. The singer could have never imagined the chain of events that followed the show’s conclusion.
“I walk out of the studio, they give me back my phone, and I’ve got like 10,000 notifications and I’m like, ‘What’s happening?’” she said. “By midnight, I’m like the number one most-Googled thing in the whole world.”
Her waitressing days were numbered, and Perri’s next flight east wasn’t to visit family, but rather to sign a deal with Atlantic Records in New York. Now two albums and millions of singles sold later, Perri returned to “SYTYCD” to perform the second single from her sophomore LP, “Burning Gold.” Appropriately enough, the subject of the song’s lyrics is Perri’s bold move to Los Angeles to chase her dream.
“It’s bringing this song, which I wrote about my experience, but it’s really bringing this song to life in the exact place where my life for the first time did stem gold,” Perri said. “It’s very powerful that I’m doing this song. That’s what it’s all about for me.”
In addition to the triple-platinum selling “Jar,” Perri’s track she wrote for “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1” called, “A Thousand Years” moved four million copies. The singer turns 28 next week, and will close out the month with a string of supporting dates on OneRepublic’s “Native Tour.” Later this year, Perri will open for Demi Lovato throughout her schedule of arenas in North America.
Listen to “Ralphie Tonight” weeknights from 7p-12a on 97 BHT.