Jason René Castro (born March 25, 1987) is an American acoustic/folk-pop/contemporary Christian singer-songwriter and was the fourth place finalist on the seventh season of American Idol. After Idol, he signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records and his self-titled debut album was released on April 13, 2010.
Born in Dallas, Texas, and raised in Rowlett, Texas, he currently resides in Rockwall, Texas. His parents, René and Betsy Castro, are Colombian, and he is the first person in his family to be born in the United States, followed by younger siblings Michael and Jackeline (Jackie), both of whom are singer-songwriters as well
Castro was the love interest of Cheyenne Kimball on her MTV reality show, Cheyenne and was also featured in her music video for “Hanging On”.
On October 31 on Halloween in 2009, Castro proposed to Mandy Mayhall, an alumna of the University of Oklahoma, a Kappa Kappa Gamma member and his girlfriend of a year and a half. Castro proposed to her at a tailgate party before the Oklahoma/Kansas State football game in Norman, Oklahoma. The two were dressed as Disney characters Belle and The Beast from the animated film Beauty and the Beast as their Halloween costumes. He proposed by writing on a pumpkin, “Marry me?” Castro and Mayhall began dating in 2008 when Castro’s Idol stint began but first became friends in high school at Rowlett High School. Mayhall made a brief cameo in Castro’s music video for “Let’s Just Fall In Love Again.”
Castro and Mayhall were married January 2, 2010, in his hometown near Dallas, TX, and reside in Dallas. Their firstborn, daughter Madeline Emilia Castro, was born August 28, 2011.
Castro auditioned for American Idol in Dallas, Texas, singing the Ray LaMontagne version of the song “Crazy”. He was not shown on the television series until the final 24 due to legal restrictions on the songs he chose to perform. During a March 17, 2008 appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show, judge Simon Cowell chose Castro early as one of his four favorites in the competition, along with David Cook, David Archuleta, and Brooke White. On April 12, Ryan Seacrest and the three judges appeared in Larry King Live, Larry King revealed the results of his website poll which asked “Whom do you want to win American Idol?” and said that Castro was in the lead.