“Sometimes it gets a little scary.”
The newly crowned American Idol is still getting used to his quick plunge into fame. Phillip Phillips, 21, is already one of the singing competition’s most successful winners. The debut of his coronation song “Home” is second only to Ruben Studdard‘s “Flying Without Wings,” according to Billboard. “Home” sold 278,000 copies in its first week, right behind Studdard’s 286,000 copies according to Nielson SoundScan.
“It’s crazy man. It still hasn’t sunk in for me at all, none of this,” he told me. “”It doesn’t seem like it’s me.”
The soft-spoken Lessburg, Georgia native overcame major health obstacles in addition to the challenge of the show. Kidney problems almost forced him out of the competition and into the surgery room.
“There was a couple times it just started hurting so bad I just kinda wanted to get out and get the surgery done…. There were some tough times.”
Phillips says he had a top-notch medical team to make sure he was safe to continue on the show, but you can imagine it made his family — and his girlfriend — pretty nervous! “Oh yeah, they got pretty nervous for me. They wanted me to be healthy first. But I tried to pull it out, ya know. I didn’t wanna give up because I wanted it pretty bad.”
A record 132 million votes were cast in the Season 11 finale, so it’s no surprise Phillip Phillips encounters throngs of fans wherever he goes. That part is still taking some getting used to.
“Everywhere I go I get bombarded. Sometimes it gets a little scary, when a lot of people get around you. But I make it fun, ya know especially if it’s kids… ’cause I’m still a fan of so many other people, I’d probably act like a little girl if I saw somebody I’m a fan of!”
Phillips says he’s getting the surgery soon and will be ready to go by the time the American Idols Live tour rolls around. And hopefully before then, some time to rest at home in Georgia.
“I haven’t been back home yet man, I wanna go back and see what’s goin’ on, just to be able to relax in my home.” And maybe pull a shift at the old pawn shop where he worked before Idol? “Yeah maybe do somethin’ like that! And to be around my family and my friends I haven’t seen in awhile. That’s what I miss.”
He’s already got some songs on paper for his debut album, but a little different from what you’ve heard. “It’s not gonna be like [the single] Home. It’s gonna be a little bit more rock and jazz, and some acoustic stuff.”
Phillips told me the album should drop in November. Until then, look for him on tour with the Idols this summer!
Listen the interview:
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