Last night Haeley Vaughn and Michelle Delamor were eliminated from American Idol
. This afternoon, they both took the time to answer questions about their time on American Idol
, the "M" named artists that have inspired them most and what's next for them.
Here are the highlights of Haeley and Michelle's interviews.
Haeley Vaughn seemed every bit the nervous teenager during our interview as she did on stage, with her voice fluctuating from a barely audible whisper to loud and boisterous when she spoke of her Disney dreams.
That's right, now that her American Idol
journey is over, Haeley hope to returns to the small screen on the Disney Channel where she could work with the artists that inspire her most: Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, and the Jonas Brothers. "I love Disney and so if I was given the chance to work with Disney I would jump on it. Miley Cyrus, oh my gosh, I love her. Hopefully something will open up there."
Haeley didn't feel like the judges' gave her conflicting advice about song choice or her age affecting her preparedness. "I kind of agreed with the judges. I thought they gave good advice and I will definitely be working on it. More experience and more time on my vocals would be good. Experience would always be better. Especially since I'm 16 and this was the first thing I've done. I'd never performed before millions of people before, or even hundreds." She did however; think that Simon could have been a little nicer about his critiques. "Simon was definitely really harsh this season. Sometimes he should soften the blow, but that's Simon
Cowell, he's been like that for nine years."
Haeley admits the knowledge that Simon Cowell and millions of people were watching did affect her performance, "The first week was really tough we were all super nervous and scared and worried about our song choice. We were all just freaking out and nerves are always going to play a huge factor in what we do on the show. I think if I'd lasted my nerves would have calmed a bit, but they would've always been there."
Haeley may just be 16, but she knows what kind of artist she wants to be: pop-country. When asked why as a country artist she didn't chose to sing any country songs, Haeley showed some serious Idol knowledge and strategy. "The songs I chose, I made them kind of pop country that was my whole thing. I didn't want to sing Martina McBride every week just because I was a country artist. Carrie Underwood on her season didn't just sing country songs; she made non-country songs her own."
If Haeley could have done anything different, she wouldn't have chosen different songs, she just would have sung them better. "I wouldn't change anything but doing it better. If I were given the chance, I would just make it better and work on the technical things on my voice."
While Haeley sounded every bit the nervous teenager during our interview, Michelle sounded like a seasoned pro who saw Idol as only the beginning to a long and successful career. When Michelle ended our interview saying, "You'll be seeing me at the Grammy's one day. I promise." I was apt to not only believe her, but to hope that it's true.
Michelle commands the stage because she's been singing and performing her entire life. "I've been singing on stage since I was 5-years-old, mostly at church. That's been my platform and playground."
However, Michelle admits her confidence faltered on Wednesday night and that the root of it was doubt surrounding her song choice. "I really did question "Arms Wide Open." As a matter of fact, I think part of what messed me up is I questioned that before I got up on stage. And people can feel that, if you're questioning it."
In fact, Michelle was shocked when Kara Dioguardi complimented her on her Wednesday night performance, going so far as to call it "her best performance yet." Of course, Kara revised her comments on Thursday night's results show, telling Michelle her performance had suffered from serious pitch issues. "When she actually said that on stage that day, I was really shocked, because I didn't feel like that was my best performance at all. So when she took it back on Thursday, I wasn't too surprised, but I was surprised she took it back. Kara's comment was a little disappointing, but knowing myself, I'm really a perfectionist and I know I didn't do my best. I know Wednesday wasn't even close to my best performance. I was a little disappointed that she had that to say, but I can't say I was surprised."
With 20/20 hindsight Michelle realizes she should have gone with her first song choice Wednesday, "Come Together" by The Beatles, but done in the style that her hero and musical inspiration, Michael Jackson sang it. "Michael Jackson is my idol and his inspiration. I feel his version of 'Come Together' has a drive and an inspiration and I've always loved that song."
Michelle has watched American Idol since season one and stepping on the big stage, was accomplishing one her life goals. "I've watched every season of American Idol When I first walked into that room and saw that stage I was like Oh. My. God. There were nerves, but definitely an adrenaline rush." But Michelle isn't content for her dream to end with Idol, "I'm staying in Los Angeles and going to do anything I can to make it big. You'll see me doing something big one day, I promise."
(Images courtesy of FOX)