After dominating the online karate scene last year, world No. 1 e-kata player James De los Santos hopes to do the same in the entertainment world with his voice as a singer.
De los Santos won a total of 36 gold medals last year, including 35 from various international competitions sanctioned by the SportsData for online meets of the World Karate Federation (WKF).
That catapulted the 30-year-old fighter to the top spot of the male senior’s category of e-kata.
However, gifted with a beautiful voice, De los Santos said he would also dabble as a singer. The former national team member has actually posted several of his videos via the streaming app Kumu.
“That’s where I sing,” De los Santos told Manila Bulletin Wednesday.
“I’m going to focus on singing too, aside from competing in online karate tournaments.”
Some of the covers De los Santos has done so far include Josh Turner’s “Your Man” and “Why Don’t We Just Dance”, “Photograph” by Ed Sheeran and “Love Me Tender” by the late Rock N Roll icon Elvis Presley.
“Fun fact: Elvis Presley was also a karate practitioner,” he said De los Santos.
“I’m singing country music, some old songs like Elvis, and I’m studying current and OPM songs.”
According to De los Santos, he got his athletic genes from his father David – an American football player during his college days and a karate practitioner as well – while his being artistic was from his mother Eva.
His mother participated in last year’s blind audition of The Voice, while his sister Monique was in the final round of the American Idol contest back in 2011. His other sister Anna also sings.
“We inherited my mom’s artistic side, but my sisters, they’re not athletic,” said De los Santos in jest.
A bronze medalist in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games back in 2017 and 2015, De los Santos hopes to start competing in an online karate tournament via the Adidas USA Open next week.