Former American Idol winner Samantha “Just Sam” Diaz, who won Season 18, recently opened up about how her life has been since winning the competition in 2020. Diaz won during the at-home version of the series during the Pandemic and recently revealed to her Instagram following that she’s back in NYC singing in the subways.
“Back in 2021, I was super embarrassed to be going back to the trains. I didn’t want people to know that I legit needed the money and I didn’t want people to know that it wasn’t optional,” Diaz wrote on Instagram according to The Sun. “I was disappointed in myself for allowing myself to fall so low after winning Idol, but then I had to take it easy on me and remember that I started my journey with Idol at 20 years old. Not even knowing anything about Hollywood or the music industry.”
“Since then, I have learned so much and I’ve been able to take my experiences and share them with other artists in hopes that they don’t experience the same things that I did when it comes to making it in this life.”
She added, “Everyone wants to know what happened and why this or why that and I will answer those questions someday, but in the meantime, I’ll say this, I never expected to win, but I did. I was so grateful and I know that people are feeling like I let them down.”
Without revealing exactly caused her to be in the situation that she’s currently in, she said, “We didn’t know what to do with the win especially being that we had absolutely no help.” Diaz did sign to Hollywood Records but never put out a song. “There are people who have had more success than me and good for them I’m happy for them, but I am not them. I don’t like my situation, but it won’t be this forever.”
However, she did add that she feels that she let herself and “everyone down, too,” but added, “I know that everything happens for a reason and I know that this too shall pass no matter what things may look like right now.”
Diaz has been seen performing songs like Beyoncé’s “Listen” and Ariana Grande’s “Almost Is Never Enough.” Look at a video of Just Sam above.