Interview with Paul Jolley of "American Idol" on FOX - Primetime Article From The TV MegaSite

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By Krista

Interview with Paul Jolley of "American Idol" on FOX 3/22/13

Final Transcript
FBC PUBLICITY: American Idol Eliminated Contestant Call
March 22, 2013/1:15 p.m. PDT

Molly OíGara
Paul Jolley


Moderator: Welcome to the American Idol Interview call with Paul Jolley. As a reminder, this conference is being recorded. Iíll now turn the conference over to Molly OíGara for opening remarks.

M. OíGara: Hi everybody. Thanks so much for joining us today for the American Idol Eliminated Conference Call with Paul. As a reminder, heís here to talk about his experience on American Idol and his plans moving forward. As always, if we feel that anyone is harping on any one subject, we do reserve the right to jump in and move the call along.

With that being said, Laurie, letís get started with the first question.

Moderator: We have a question from the line of Jamie Ruby with

J. Ruby: Iíve got to say I was sorry to see you go. What do you see yourself making now? What kind of album do you see yourself making? What do you have planned coming up?

P. Jolley: I still want to stick with the country/pop lane. I donít want to change what I feel in my heart that my calling is and what I need to be doing.

J. Ruby: What were your first thoughts when you got up on the stage before the huge audience? What were you thinking?

P. Jolley: Before I got up there, I was just trying to make sure that my mind was clear and I was staying focused on the big picture and not getting distracted from the main thing that I was there to do.

Moderator: Our next question is from Russell Weakland with

R. Weakland: They definitely seem to want a girl to win the show this year. Out of the remaining guys, who do you think has the best chance to win, in your eyes?

P. Jolley: Honestly, I donít know because everybody is so good and each in their own individual way. Everybody has their own genre that theyíre doing and itís basically the battle of the genres rather than who the better person is.

R. Weakland: What advice was given to you after your elimination from the judges? Did you get a chance to speak to any of them?

P. Jolley: Yes, a few of them came up and they just told me to just keep on keeping on, pretty much, and believe in myself and pretty much I have a career in this.

Moderator: We have a question from the line of Michelle Angermiller with Hollywood Reporter.

M. Angermiller: I have a question for you. The question is, were you guys confused by the conflicting advice that you were getting throughout the competition?

P. Jolley: I was kind of confused because every week it was something new, which I appreciated that a lot because I always want that room to grow. Thereís always room to grow, so if Iím not doing something wrong then thereís something wrong with them not telling me. No, I really appreciate them telling me things that I can work on.

M. Angermiller: A lot of people are saying that this is the end of the white guy with the guitar era. Do you think thatís true?

P. Jolley: For this show, yes, but in my eyes Iíve already won.

Moderator: Letís go to Michael Weinfeld with Associated Press Broadcast.

M. Weinfeld: Jimmy Iovine says that the judges are being too easy on the contestants this season. I would guess that you would not agree with that.

P. Jolley: I donít agree with it. I feel like theyíve been really, really easy on a lot of the other contestants, but for some reason I feel like I was just the pointed out one to be tough on this season. Iím okay with that because I want that critique and I want to grow as an artist and I want to go somewhere with my career. Iím okay with that.

M. Weinfeld: Itís seems that you look a lot thinner now than when you tried out originally. Do you get to choose what you eat in the mansion or do they serve you and you have to eat whatever youíre served in front of you?

P. Jolley: Sometimes we get to choose and then sometimes they just bring you salad and burritos and stuff, healthy things, and Iím not really a health kind of guy. I just eat cheeseburgers and pizzas and stuff.

M. Weinfeld: Do you know how much weight youíd lost?

P. Jolley: I donít, but I know that my clothes donít fit the same.

Moderator: We go next to Nahal Mottaghian with USA Today.

N. Mottaghian: If you had stayed on Idol, what song were you planning on singing next week?

P. Jolley: It was going to be ďTracks of My Tears.Ē

N. Mottaghian: For all of those who are hoping to be on Idol next year, do you have any advice for them?

P. Jolley: Just go for it and donít hold back. When you walk in there just be yourself; donít try to be something that youíre not. Just believe in yourself and have faith that you can do this and if itís something thatís meant to be then it will happen or maybe itís just not the right timing if you donít make it. I just say keep on keeping on.

Moderator: Weíll go to Jamie Steinberg with Starry Constellation Magazine.

J. Steinberg: I was wonderingóyouíre a passionate singer who has this natural ability to express yourselfóI was wondering if acting was something youíd also like to pursue.

P. Jolley: Sure, I want to do everything. I want to have an album. I want to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry. I want to have my own clothing line. I donít know if everyone knew, but that was a custom shirt that we had made when I performed ďEleanor Rigby.Ē

I want to do acting. I would love to. I want to dabble in everything and put my Paul Jolley stamp on everything.

J. Steinberg: What would you like to say to everyone who is a fan in support of you?

P. Jolley: I just want to say thank you so much. Itís a true blessing to have such loyal people that are there for me no matter what. Itís crazy how after Iíve been kicked off how many more followers that Iíve got and supporters that Iíve received. Itís crazy and Iím still overwhelmed with it, just over last night.

Moderator: Weíll go to Reg Seeton with

R. Seeton: How did you feel about Jimmyís comment that you werenít ready for primetime? What did you take away from that?

P. Jolley: I would just have to say to each his own because I think I am ready for it or I wouldnít be in the top ten of the competition. Thereís no way I would be there. I feel he saved me for a reason so I feel like he knows that I have the talent and he knows that Iím ready or he wouldnít have done that for me.

R. Seeton: Youíve said many times that this is your calling in life. How do you see not winning as a positive for the future?

P. Jolley: I can move on and I can start doing my own thing. I donít have to stay glued to just doing a certain theme every week. I can still talk to my Troopers and fans and learn about what they want to hear from me.

Moderator: Weíll go to Bill Pinella with UT San Diego.

B. Pinella: I have a question about the save concept. What do you think of that? Do you think they should make the person trying to get a save go ahead and sing, because it doesnít seem like they were paying much attention to you singing while you were doing it.

P. Jolley: I knew I wasnít going to be saved because Jimmy already saved me once and I knew they werenít going to save me again. Iím glad I got to sing because it makes the last stamp of Paul Jolley. It doesnít just say okay, Paulís kicked off the show and then Iím done. Iíd rather sing something that means something to me and then leave on a good note.

B. Pinella: Okay, what do you think about Jimmy? Do you think heís good in the role heís cast in or do you think heíd be better as a judge on a weekly basis?

P. Jolley: I think heís good in the role that heís in because we get more one-on-one with him and he knows what heís talking about. I really, highly respect his opinion.

Moderator: Weíll go to Matt Carter with

M. Carter: First things first, in this series you just talked a little bit about wanting to be a fashion designer and I didnít know that before this call. When did that thinking and that dream come up for you?

P. Jolley: Itís always been in my head and itís always something that I wanted to do, but this is American Idol and this is where the spotlight is for this. But I think everyone in the industry at some point in time wants to stretch out, so why not go ahead and look at the full picture now and let people know about it?

M. Carter: When it comes to Nicki Minaj in particular, she was very hard on you at times. Whatís your general opinion of her? Are you grateful for all the advice? Do you wish sheíd been easier at times?

P. Jolley: Iím thankful for the critiquing that she gave me. I wish it wouldíve been more things that I could take and work on or learn from, but no, I still love her just the same and I appreciate everything she has. She put me through the first round as well, so Iím very thankful.

Moderator: Weíll go to Marisa Sullivan with US Weekly.

M. Sullivan: I wanted to know when the tour starts and what youíre going to do to prepare for the tour. Will you guys have vocal coaches? Will you personally seek out to take some classes, whether itís dance, acting, vocal coaching classes?

P. Jolley: To be honest, I donít know. There are so many papers and stuff that tells us the dates and things of when weíre going on tour and where weíre going and everything. Iíd love to know myself so I can prepare and get my fans all built up in the different cities weíre going to go. But everybody just needs to know that Iím going to bring it on the tour and they better get ready for a good show.

M. Sullivan: You were telling us last night that you had some family and friends in town, but you hadnít had a chance to speak with them yet. Iím just curious how you spent the rest of your night and how they comforted you and what did they say to you? What did they do to support you? How did you hang out?

P. Jolley: Well, I had to go and pack and leave my hotel and then go to another hotel. Then I had to get things ready and be up at 4:00 a.m.ówell, I had to be up at 3:00 a.m. this morning to get ready for interviews all day long. My mom and dad took a taxi and visited me for about 30 minutes and spent some time with me and just shared their love. Thatís what I need the most, is the love from them.

M. Sullivan: You should be celebrating because you did great and you came really far. Thank you.

Moderator: We have a question from Kirsten Coachman with Blogcritics Magazine.

K. Coachman: I was just wondering, which of the judges, when they were doing the critique, which one of themódid you favor one of their critiques versus the other as far as their feedback helping you?

P. Jolley: I would say Keith Urban gave me the best feedback that I could probably learn from and take and use in my career that I want to do after Idol. Yes, for sure, Keith Urban.

K. Coachman: Very cool. What was your favorite moment from the competition?

P. Jolley: My favorite moment was the fans. I love them so much and I wouldnít be where I am today if it wasnít for them. I just want to give a big thanks and shout out to them.

Moderator: Weíll go to Beth Kwiatkowski with Reality TV World.

B. Kwiatkowski: Throughout the whole beginning of the season, the judges criticized you for basically over performing songs, like being too theatrical with your facial expressions and everything. But this week, the judges had the exact opposite reaction. Randy said you seemed disconnected from the song and Mariah said you needed to give more emotion. I guess I can only imagine how frustrating that was.

It almost seemed like, at least in my eyes, you were trying to maybe downplay the visible emotion as to not overdo it again. Do you mind talking about that a little bit?

P. Jolley: Yes, to be honest, I didnít try to do anything else different. I literally just went out there and because the more and more Iíve kept doing it, it kept getting more and more comfortable and I can be myself. Thereís a lot going on on that stage. We have cameras we have to look for, the red dots we have to follow to make sure that weíre looking at the right camera. There are a lot of things that a lot of the viewers donít know about that are all new to all of us; itís all a learning experience.

B. Kwiatkowski: Jimmy Iovine had said that he expected Lazaro to land in the bottom three following his performance Wednesday night that obviously didnít receive great praise from the judges. That didnít happen. Do you have any thoughts on why that might be and did it surprise you that he escaped the bottom three?

P. Jolley: Lazaro has a huge following. He has an amazing story and everyone connects to it. I give him good props for that and I wish him the best of luck.

Moderator: Weíll go to Krista Chain with TV MegaSite.

K. Chain: My question was I know that you had said that you would prefer to do country and pop and some of the judges didnít seem to think that your voice fit well in the country genre. Did that hold you back as far as picking songs or anything?

P. Jolley: Not at all because I know who I want to be and Iím not going to change that. The story that Iíve been giving people is when Elvis first started coming out, everybody was taken by storm, like whoa, whatís this going on? Once they caught on, now heís the King of Rock ní Roll. Everybody loves him. Heís a king pretty much and I feel like once everyone catches on and sees where I want to go with this career and they hear the original material that Iím literally wanting to do, I feel like there will be a better understanding and people are going to love it.

Moderator: We go to Mark Stone with Vista Radio.

M. Stone: First, Iíve got to tell you how much I thought you killed it last night and putting your stamp on ďHearts Alone.Ē I think youíre the first Idol to ever do it justice. Thatís awesome.

P. Jolley: Thank you, I appreciate that.

M. Stone: Iíve read that you woke up yesterday and had a moment with God where you just knew you were going home. Was that realization completely spiritual or was it coming from somewhere else? Can you elaborate on that?

P. Jolley: I have a really close connection with God. Every morning I say my morning prayer to start the day off. Itís a good start to the day because Iím so thankful for where Iím at and where Iíve come and where I am right now in life. Iíd just come to the realizationóI donít know, it was just a moment I had and this is the day that Iím going to be leaving the show and Iím okay with it because God, in His own way, I feel like spoke to me and said, I have bigger and better plans for you. This is just a stepping stone in life.

I was just so ready for it. Everybody throughout the day could see it in my eyes, the people I talked to about it, and they said that they felt that in me, that I was okay no matter what.

M. Stone: Did they think you were kind of crazy for thinking youíre going home?

P. Jolley: No, because I feel like the world now, they want people to be down and honest about the feelings and how they are. I think thatís going to be more than anything to the viewers and the followers and everyone who listens and watches the show or looks into these interviews that weíre doing. They want me to be real. They donít want me to be fake, so Iím going to tell you the truth about what I felt and what was going through my mind.

M. Stone: Perfect, and just as a quick follow-up, do you see yourself everóbecause I know they wanted you to steer away from country and onto pop or danceówould you ever do something like that, like a dance record?

P. Jolley: I donít think youíd really want to see me dance, but weíll see.

Moderator: We go to Jamie Ruby with

J. Ruby: Hi, again. What was it about Idol that appealed to you that you decided that was the one you were going to audition for?

P. Jolley: I had auditioned for American Idol a few times before and I never made it past the cattle call. I got to the point where I was like, well, maybe this TV show is just not for me and I was okay with it. Then this year I opened up for an artist named Billy Dean andóan amazing guy by the wayóand so I was home the next week and one of the ladies that got me to do the show called me up and she said, American Idol is coming here next week, but itís not released. We want you to come and represent our town and come audition. I said, Iím off work that day, it works out, Iíll be there.

At that time, I didnít even know Keith Urban was going to be a judge and heís always been my idol ever since I was a little kid. Itís funny how things just always play out in the favor of if you want something to happen and you believe enough that things will happen.

J. Ruby: It really worked out and Iím sure the rest of the stuff will out now for you. Youíre still going to the concert. Is there anythingóI know you donít know a lot about it yetóbut is there something youíre looking forward to about going?

P. Jolley: Of course. I get to do more than one song to the audience and have fun with it. There are no votes, there are no four judges just staring me down. I cannot wait until I just have my moment with the fans.

Moderator: Letís go to Reg Seeton with

R. Seeton: How did you feel coming into the competition with a country background? Did you feel you were at a disadvantage or more comfortable since Keith was there?

P. Jolley: Not at all, itís not really a comfort thing. Itís just being myself. Everywhere I go I just have to be myself, no matter if itís 500 hundred people in a room or just four judges in the room. I didnít feel like it was a disadvantage at all. Itís clear now because you can see all the different genres that we have in the competition still.

R. Seeton: Jimmy said the judges were coddling the singers too much. How did you feel since they were a little harder on you?

P. Jolley: It bothered me, but I was okay with it because I want some critiquing. I want to grow ultimately.

Moderator: We have a question from Michelle Angermiller with Hollywood Reporter.

M. Angermiller: I wanted to ask you, you were a demo singer in Nashville for a while too. I wanted to know who you worked for. What songs you did, anything that we might have heard of that became a hit?

Is it true that you were singing demos in Nashville before the show?

P. Jolley: No, I wasnít doing demo work in Nashville. I was just working on my songwriting and getting my book ready.

M. Miller: So you have a lot of originals ready to go?

P. Jolley: Yes, I do. Iím ready.

M. Miller: I think youíre also ready for modeling.

P. Jolley: Thank you. Thatís what the photographers told me too!

Moderator: We go to Beth Kwiatkowski with Reality TV World.

B. Kwiatkowski: Randy announced the judgesí decision not to use their save on you. It was not unanimous. Did you ever find out which judges voted to save you and which ones didnít?

P. Jolley: No, and honestly I donít really want to know because thatís their own personal opinion. I donít feel like they should have to let us know. Either way, I respect their decision. I still love them all the same, whoever it was.

B. Kwiatkowski: Sure. Everyoneís been proclaiming this season the year of the girls. Do you think that naturally put the men at a disadvantage voting-wise from the very beginning, because thereís just been so much talk about how excellent the girls are?

P. Jolley: I donít know, maybe, maybe not. I think theyíre all amazing. I wish everybody the best of luck.

B. Kwiatkowski: Okay, and looking back, do you think that you wouldíve done anything differently? If you could go back, would you have changed anything to better your chances in the competition, whether it be song choice or anything like that?

P. Jolley: I honestly would not change a single thing that Iíd done on the show. I chose my song choices for a reason. If you listen, everything that I sang had a lyrical meaning and I loved every bit of it. Everything that I spoke and the way I spoke on there I was truthful and I was myself. No, I wouldnít change a thing that Iíd done at all.

B. Kwiatkowski: Okay, so just to clarify on something you said earlier, you said the more your performed on the stage, the more comfortable you got and the more you really acted as yourself. Does that mean that all the different criticism from the judges and the different things Jimmy had to say really didnít bother you? Did that really not get inside your head at all?

P. Jolley: No, it didnít get in my head at all. The only thing thatís so hard is, like I said, following the cameras and itís a big stage. Iíve performed in front of thousands of people before and itís never been a problem. But when youíve just learned a song within a few days and you have to perform it, follow cameras, and then so many things you have to worry about, it can play a toll on how your performance comes across. No, I still wouldnítónothing I would change about anything.

M. OíGara: With that, weíre going to finish the call. I want to thank everyone for joining us today. As a reminder, American Idol airs Wednesdays and Thursdays on FOX and all of our photos can be found on

At this time, Iím going to turn the call back over to Paul for a final remark. Then weíll provide replay instructions and then weíll be done. Paul?

P. Jolley: All right. I just want to say thank you so much for all the people that are interviewing me, first off. It means a lot that youíre interested enough in me to even care. Thank you so much to all the fans and the Troopers out there that have supported me and please continue to follow me because this is not the end and I have a lot of other things up my sleeve that I want to show and give and share to you all. Thank you so much.

M. OíGara: Thanks everyone. We can give the replay instructions and then everyone can disconnect. Please have a great afternoon.

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