Name: Jacqui Newland
Category: Under 25 Girls
Audition song: AC/DC – Highway To Hell
Bootcamp songs: Aerosmith – Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing & Adele – Rolling In The Deep
Judge House song: Pink – Who Knew
Musical influences: Beyonce, Aretha Franklin, Mariah Carey, Christina Aguilera
Interesting/ unusual fact: I don’t put milk on my cereal!
Jacqui Newland may only be 22 but she already feels she’s at a crossroads in her life. After slogging it out on the music scene for several years, she’s now looking to The X Factor to decide her path. Currently the lead singer of a covers band (Plum Crazy), who perform one to two nights a week in her hometown of Geelong, she didn’t know if she should continue chasing her music dream or give up on it completely.
“Even though I’m only 22 I feel like I’m at a cross roads. I could go on and keep trying to break it into the music industry – which is really hard but would be so worth it – or I could just settle down and get a fulltime job, become a singing teacher, have kids.”
Her teaching career – she was due to study primary teaching – and a family with boyfriend of five years, Jono, a marine engineer will have to wait. Jacqui, who’s been singing for around 12 years, now has her sights firmly set on music after wowing the judges at the auditions. Her surprise choice to sing the AC/DC anthem ‘Highway to Hell’ had all of them raving. “I did not expect that,” Guy said. “I loved every minute of it.”
Jacqui believes her experience will give her a winning edge in the competition. “I’m a bit more experienced than the other girls in my group,” she says. “I’ve been doing live gigs for three years now so I’m used to a live crowd and pumping them up.”
But she says her “self-doubt” is her main weakness. “I always think maybe I won’t because there’s so many more talented people out there.” Jacqui draws inspiration from her late father Neville who lost his battle with cancer when she was only 17. “He had lymphoma in his stomach. To see him deteriorate was really horrible. He’s my motivation now. He wanted me to succeed in whatever I loved doing and he knew how much I loved singing.”
With a preference for pop, she cites Beyonce, Pink, Katy Perry and Christina Aguilera as her musical heroes. Like her idols, she too hopes to make the stage her home. “I just want to perform in front of people all the time. It’s what I love to do.”