No excuses from Paige Miles, but she admitted in a conference call Thursday a.m. that her voice was shot during much of the show and particularly on Tuesday night.

Shot to the point that singing was probably the worst thing she could have been doing and it could have caused permanent damage to her vocal chords.

But she went on with the show, was elminated as the 11th finalist and missed out on the riches and the talent exposure she would have received this summer on the AI Tour, which features the Top 10, not the Top 11.

Yes, she was bummed about that; and yes, there was more pressure this week because of it. And, yes, she thought it rather unfair that she didn’t even have the option of the “save” on Wednesday night because before she even opened her mouth to sing, Simon told her they had decided not to exercise a “save” in her behalf.

Here is a portion of Paige Miles’ exit interview of March 25, 2010

 What did you think of Miley Cyrus as a mentor?

 “I think she did fine actually. She has a lot of experience in the business as far as touring, making albums, doing things that a lot of us in the competition are trying to do.”

What do you think is next for you?

“To continue moving forward with my singing and wherever else that may lead me. This is something that I obviously want to make a career out of so I want to keep moving forward.”

How much influence do you think the judges have?

“Obviously the judges have a certain amount of power over the voting public. Tuesday wasn’t my best and they ripped me for it. But their comments can go both ways. You never really know how the viewers will vote.”

Did you and any of the contestents ever talk about how to please the judges?

“Yes, the best thing is to be yourself.”

Paige your voice sounds a lot worse today. Can you tell us about that?

“It was bad last night but not this bad. I’ve been struggling with laryngitis for three weeks now. There is a lot of inflammation. I didn’t have a lot of time for it to get better. It would get a little bit better and then I would have to sing again. And that affected by song choice some because I would have to pick something smaller to do. I’d have to pick something that wouldn’t overtax by chords or something that might possibly damage them permanently. ”

Well, you sounded great last night…

“I just got it together and let it rip.”

Did you think the judges and the media were being too harsh on everybody this season?

“Some of the things they say I agree with and I totally understand where they are coming from. But in some ways the context of it can be a little hurtful … maybe they can rephrase it or say it in another way cause it does come across as pretty harsh.”

Did the lack of screen time hurt you?

“Well, early on I wanted to build a fan base. But when you are performing on stage that sets the tone. Sorry I didn’t deliver it the way I could have. Maybe I would still be around.”

What was your favorite part of being on American Idol?

“Being able to perform on a big stage. That’s what I love to do. I would have done it in jeans and a T-shirt or in a pretty white dress.”

Next week was going to be R&B/Soul week, what were you going to sing?

“It was a tossup between Don’t Leave Me This Way and I Can’t Stand the Rain by Tina Turner.”

Did that sting even more knowing that you were the one who just missed the Tour?


Was there more pressure preparing this week because of that?


Do you think it might be good if the judges actually suggested a song for you to sing?

“That would be a cool little twist to the process. It is really hard. That’s where we get nailed at more than anything.”

Who do you think you are as an artist?

“I know who I am as an artist. My problem was finding the material that I felt fit me. It was tough. I like rock/pop/soul. Up-tempo music. So when my voice started failing me I started taking it slower and that really didn’t work for me.”

Do you think you could have pushed a little harder?

“Yes, but the inflammation to my vocal chords was so enormous that I was fearful of permanent damage. I really did have to take it easy. Unfortunately, it was really, really bad timing.”

It’s bad enough to sing after you know you have been eliminated, but how did it feel knowing you weren’t even going to be able to use the save? Did that hurt?

“Yes, I thought even if you didn’t get the votes I thought you had the opportunity to sing for it and then they make the decision. But for the decision to be made before I even opened my mouth … I was pretty bummed.”