gained fame on the fourth season of American Idol
for his sultry, smoldering looks to the camera. Now his debut, self-titled solo album will finally be released tomorrow, August 7, two years in the making. He took the time to make it the best he could, releasing it under his own label of Sixth Place Records, an homage to his finish on American Idol
Since that time, his career has soared with opportunities on television and on Broadway. His latest gig is as one of the stars of The Bold and the Beautiful
in which he plays a singer and music producer named Constantine.
Constantine spoke to BuddyTV last week about his new CD, his work on the popular daytime soap opera, and his future plans as both a singer and as a record label owner. Below you will find the complete transcript of the interview as well as the mp3 audio file.
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Hi, this is John from Buddy TV, and we're talking with former American Idol contestant, currently appearing on The Bold and the Beautiful, Constantine Maroulis. Hello!
Hey man, how's it going?
It's going good. How are you doing?
I'm very well, just enjoying this California sun today. It's a beautiful day, and you know, happy to talk to you. So what's going down?
Just wondering what's going on with you. Your new solo CD is coming out August 7, correct?
Absolutely, it drops August 7, self-titled Constantine. Excited really, I think it's about freaking time this thing has come about. It's sort of important for us to put some distance between myself and the show, and do a bunch of different cool projects, not just concentrate on my recording career.
I was lucky enough to do Broadway, and a bunch of hosting, and international touring. I started my own label, and it's Sixth Place Records, that's a tribute to my time well-spent on American Idol. But it's a little reminder that, you know, sixth place is hopefully the new first place, and if I keep working hard you can see me accomplish my dreams. It's good times.
Certainly, you already seem to be accomplishing most of it, a lot of them on the new CD. How much of it is your original, how many of the songs do you write or…?
I think I ended up writing, what, three or four of the songs. I'd written a bunch more for the record, but we decided against using some of them for this particular project, and collaborate with some amazing people everywhere from here in Los Angeles to Nashville. So some great songwriters, and the album is distinctly rock, but it's got a sort of feel-good pop energy to it as well.
Lots of my influences are there and very evident on the record, and so I'm pretty excited. I grew up with a very diverse musical background. My parents are sort of Korean war era folks, and my brother got me into the cool '70s rock, and my sister got me into the '80s new wave. I grew up in sort of like the more pop '80s stuff…
Hi! My friend's dog is here. Hi, sweetheart, hi!
So you know, I think all of the influences are pretty evident on the record, and I'm pretty stoked about it. It's not an overproduced record, it's real. We didn't spend a great deal of money on the whole, just enough to make it sound good, as good as we can. We're basically plugged in, and started playing, and pressed record, so it's pretty cool. I'm excited about it.
Well, your fans should be excited. At least on our site, on Buddy TV, every time we've posted an article about “Constantine's album is coming,” we just get a ton of posts like “Yaaay! Can't wait, this is gonna be the greatest thing ever!” Do you get a lot of that, like crazed fan interactions?
The fans have been amazingly supportive, and they're very dedicated, and I love them all very much. Hopefully people that liked me on American Idol, that haven't necessarily followed every move I made since the show, will be reminded by this record of the sort of energy and diversity I brought to the Idol stage.
Hopefully they'll pick up the record and enjoy it as much as the hardcore fans. I think I've got something for everyone on there from pop to classic rock, and I'm feeling really good about it. Being a little stressful, being your own label and being the only artist on the label as well.
So I'm trying to juggle a bunch of things right now, and full time on The Bold and the Beautiful, and doing a bunch of press and stuff. But I just love it, I love to work like that, I love being so busy and it keeps me out of trouble.
Yeah. And speaking of The Bold and the Beautiful, on that soap you play a singer and a music producer named Constantine, so…
I know, it's a big stretch for me.
What are some of the differences between playing a fictionalized version of yourself?
Well, I think the main difference is he's a lot more successful than I am. He's sort of an international, multi-platinum rock star and producer, and I don't do as much producing as my char on the show. But I think in general, our hearts are in the same place. We love what we do, and we want to help other people as much as we can. He's sort of a charitable guy, and I've managed to do a lot of work with people in need over the last few years.
I guess there are some strong similarities, and I think that it's important in a show like this. I don't think anyone really, my first effort acting on television, I don't think people wanted to see me too far away from myself. Maybe on the next gig, I can play someone much different from myself.
So I think it worked out really well. Brad Bell, the executive producer of The Bold and the Beautiful, and the whole team and staff and crew and cast over there have been so lovely to me, and really wonderful. It's been a great experience.
Is it harder than you thought it would be, or is it easier than you thought it would be, acting on a soap opera?
I think after you do Broadway, you can do pretty much anything. After you're used to that eight shows a week, that sort of regimen, I think it prepares you for anything and everything. It's not easier than I thought it would be, but it's not so bad. You can't complain when you have good solid acting work, there's no room for complaints.
There's so many unemployed actors out there that are deserving of jobs, but just aren't getting them necessarily. So when you have a good job, a good solid job, a show that's got a great reputation, world-renowned fame and whatnot, you've got to recognize how blessed you are.
You named your record label Sixth Place, so do you look back fondly on your days in American Idol?
Absolutely. I could easily sit here and complain and say, “I should've done this, I should've done that, I could've, would've, should've,” but it's really not in my nature. I firmly believe in the old cliché, ‘Whatever is meant to be, will be.' I wasn't meant to win the competition, but I feel like I'm winning in many ways.
I'm able to do what I love and just concentrate on my craft, and I haven't had to wait any tables in the last couple of years, and I think that's a good thing. Hopefully I'll continue to be able to make records and sell enough, and keep the interest alive enough to continue what I love to do.
Get on the road, tour a bit, do some more acting jobs, go back to Broadway. I want to expand my company into theatricals, and producing Broadway shows and other programming .So I hope to stick around, and I've worked before American Idol. I was a working actor/singer before Idol, and I plan to continue that.
Just our final question would be, aside from obviously all the work that you're doing, is there any immediate projects in your future? Are you trying to sign bands to your record label?
As a new label owner, I always have my ear to the ground. I've always been a big fan of new and interesting and independent underground music, especially out of New York. I have a bunch of A&R friends from big labels, and I always join them and check out shows and stuff.
If I could get to a place where I could help out another artist, I would love to do it. I think long-term, I definitely would love to take up some other artist and the realm of other acts. I feel I can contribute something to their dreams, and hopefully we can work out something like that.
But as for the immediate future, my hands are a little full finishing up my run on The Bold and the Beautiful, and potentially sticking around there a little longer. And the big release of course, August 7, of my solo debut and a subsequent tour to follow in the fall. So as far as here to the end of the year, hopefully I'll be pretty busy with those things, and whatever else comes along. And trying to have more of a social life…
(laughter) If you can try to fit that in between everything else!
If I can squeeze it in!
Well, thank you very much for talking to us, Constantine. I wish you all the best on your new album.
I appreciate that, and thanks for your time. Just say hi to the fans for me, and we'll see you out there!
-Interview conducted by John Kubicek
(Image courtesy of FOX)