President Obama And Family Attend Nat'l Christmas Tree Lighting
Updated: December 10, 2012 9:22PM
NEW YORK — With the success of his debut single, “Home,” Phillip Phillips isn’t just the dude who won “American Idol.” He’s the dude with that folk-rock hit, according to the fans he’s met.
“People are like, ‘You’re the guy with the song “Home,’” and I’m like, ‘Yeah, yeah.’ They say ... ‘So do you have any other music out?’ I’m like, ‘There are some covers.’ ‘What from?’ I say, ‘“American Idol.’” ‘You were on “American Idol”?’” he recalled.
“There was a lot of people who didn’t even know I was on ‘Idol,’” he continued. “I think that’s cool.”
The star power for winners on “Idol” — or other singing competitions on TV — don’t usually continue after the season’s run, but Phillips is hoping he won’t be one of those stereotypes, thanks to the success of his multiplatinum Top 10 hit and debut album, “The World From the Side of the Moon.” The song — the only one he didn’t write or co-write on the album — also got a boost when it was used in commercials for the Fierce Five, the five American female gymnasts who scored gold during the Olympics.
The 22-year-old also performed for the Obamas last week at the National Christmas Tree Lighting in Washington, for a special airing at 8 p.m. Tuesday on WTTW-Channel 11. He talked about his music, being laid-back and his health.
AP: What do you think of the comparisons of “Home” to Mumford & Sons’ music?
Phillips: People are always gonna compare somebody to somebody else, but I think when people hear the album it’s not gonna remind them of Mumford & Sons too much because I’m a little more rock and you know they’re very folk and they’re amazing. ... I think once they hear this album it’s gonna turn their heads a little bit.
AP: Most “Idol” winners haven’t had success like Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood. Does that make you nervous?
Phillips: I mean if it doesn’t do well it wasn’t meant to do well ... I’d be upset for a little bit, but it’s just what it’s meant to be. I can only hope for the best.
AP: How’s your health? (Phillips had major kidney surgery when he won “Idol” this year.)
Phillips: I’m doing great. I’m tired, but staying busy. This reminds me, I have to get a doctor’s checkup.
AP: You were so low-key about your health issues while on the show. Was that intentional?
Phillips: I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me or anything on the show or vote for me for sympathy or anything like that, so I tried to keep it on the DL as much as I could, but the show likes that kind of stuff and they said, ‘We’re gonna put it (out),’ and I can’t really say no because I signed some papers that they could show just about what they wanted to. So, yeah, I tried to keep it as low-key as possible.