His mentor, L.A. Reid, who was NOT happy to even get the Over 25s at first, had many words for Tate's victory, most notably, the word "proud." "Proud, proud, proud, proud, proud of Tate Stevens. You always want the right person to win and you know what happened tonight? The right guy won," L.A. Reid told us.
Tate says it was L.A. advice to just "do what I do and be confident with it" is what got him to the title, the $5 million recording contract, and his own Pepsi music video, which will debut during the 2013 Grammy Awards. But, really, it was the faithful country music fans that surely sealed his fate. "They are so loyal. They are the reason I stayed in the whole time. When they get behind an artist and they see you through. I'm telling you that's why I'm here," said Tate.
The family man, and now former city worker, said he's looking forward to getting back home for the holidays to "get in my bed that I haven't see in two and a half months and have my wife and kids and the dogs and we're not doing anything. Just chilling out in the bed." After the first of the year, however, Tate says, "We're gonna get after it."
"My life changed tonight. And my family's life changed," said a thrilled Tate.
Watch Tate Stevens Exit Interview here.