Hollie Cavanagh’s conference call on Friday morning:
What kind of album do you she see herself making?
“I’d like my album to be kind of on the pop side, with a little bit of soul. I’d like to make music that’s on the top of the charts right now. Somewhere along those lines.”
What was it like in the Idol mansion?
“It’s crazy. The house is so big as it got…a few of us left it seemed more and more bigger each time. It was a lot of fun. I was very blessed to have been such a nice house like that.”
•What was your favorite moment of the season?
“I think probably when I sung ‘Rolling in the Deep’ and “Son of a Preacher Man’, I think that was definitely my turning point on the show. Definitely also”The Climb,” ’cause that was my first standing ovation on the show.”
•Who do you think will win?
“I honestly have no idea. I definitely with America and the judges on this one. This show can go either way. Whoever it is…they are all amazing. It’s definitely going to be a fight to the finish line.”
Tell us a little bit about what you find interesting about each of the Top 3 finalists.
“Phillip is very unique, the way he performs, you don’t see a lot of people perform like that. He has his own style and his voice is amazing. Josh, he takes you to a whole ‘nother place when he sings. If you’ve watched the show, he amazes everybody each week. Of course, Jessica is only 16 and the way she sings–she sounds like she’s in her 20s. She’s amazing as well as the other two. This finale is going to be a big one.”
Talk about your friendship with Joshua Ledet.
“We started getting really close in Hollywood week. After that, we were attached at the hip from there. When he would rehearse, I would be in there watching him rehearse. We’d go out to dinner. Me Josh and Skylar, we’d always be out. Any time that we had, we hung out and relaxed and kept each other sane.”
What has it been like to be praised by Idol alums (Carrie Underwood, Lauren Alaina)?
“It’s been amazing. Just to know that they watch the show–especially Carrie when I sung her song. Obviously it was amazing to get good feedback from Carrie, because it was her song. It’s just crazy the support that we get. It’s really a blessing.”
What did you think about Jimmy’s negative feedback to “I Can’t Make You Love Me”?
“I stand by that song, and I think the lyrics in that song are so beautiful. I’ve loved that song for so long. I’m really glad I got to perform it. As far as what Jimmy said–I definitely felt that song. I understood the meaning of it. It didn’t come across the way Jimmy wanted it to. That’s fine. I re-watched it. I do agree there could have been some parts I could have…did more with it. But I stand by it. I really enjoyed performing that song.”
How hard was it to sing and swing (during “Eternal Flame” with Jessica) at the same time?
“It was interesting, but it was a lot of fun. We had fun in rehearsals with those swings. We’d be trying to swing high and get in trouble because the lights up top.”
Did you have a gut feeling that you would be voted off. Where did it come from? Did you feel that way in previous weeks?
“There was definitely something different about that Thursday. I’m not sure what it was. I guess it was just my gut telling me. I was preparing myself for it, but at the same time staying hopeful because you never know what could happen. I’m not quite sure what the feeling was but it was just different than every other Thursday.”
What do you and your fellow Idols do to alleviate the pressure?
“We hang out at the house or maybe go get some dinner. There’s really not much that we do. We don’t really go crazy because we’re so tired most of the time. So we just kind of hang out with each other and take our minds off our songs for a little bit and mess around play jokes on each other and have a little fun.”
What sort of jokes?
“Pranks. Josh would always try and scare me 24 hours a day. Skylar did it and Colton did it. Joshua was trying to buy a bunny to put in Phillip’s room just for the fun of it. Just crazy things.”
Did fan outrage help you in the voting some weeks?
“A lot of people say…that the judges were really hard on me. I kinda took it in a positive way to keep fighting. I think that’s how my fans kind of saw it as well. They saw me wanting to keep fighting. They had my back and got me through each week.”
•Did it worry you when you didn’t get a lot of screen time in Hollywood?
“At the beginning…my friends were like ‘are you sure you’re on this show’ and I’d say, ‘I’m coming on there, I promise!’ I got showed in Vegas week. I think it helps me in the sense…I was OK with it. I had 20 different thoughts going through my mind about why I wasn’t shown. I think it was a good thing.”
How did you feel about being called “The Dark Horse” of the competition?
“I would take it as a compliment. I never really looked into what everyone was saying. I was really focusing week by week and making sure my songs were right and my songs were good enough. I wanted to improve each week. People were seeing an improvement in me each week. I definitely feel like I’ve grown so much. I’m just really proud of that.”
•What was your hardest week on the show in terms of the theme?
“My hardest one was definitely Billy Joel week. That was not a great one for me! It wasn’t really my style. I had two different songs. Then I ended up with “Honesty.” I had never heard it. I was learning it. It was a very tough song. I got through. I was glad.”
•Do you think it would be easier if the themes were more current?
“Sometimes it’s difficult when we get songs and we have no idea what they are, but that’s the competition. You’re gonna get songs thrown at you that you don’t know and you have to learn it, you don’t have a choice. Sometimes we did wish we could sing songs that are on the radio now because a lot of teenagers and all that watch. I think it would have been nice to have a mixture of both. But I think they have done that pretty well this year.”
Were there any British artists you wished you could have done during British week?
“I was going to do a Spice Girls song, but change it up. But I stuck to Leona.”
What was going through your mind center stage? Did you think you were going to be eliminated and not surprised at the results?
“With Skylar … I was very shocked with that one. Skylar had killed it every single week. This week something was just different than I felt last week. Skylar kept insisting that it wasn’t me going–you just never know. But this week I think..I think I just felt it.”
Do you think a woman can win at this point?
“I think it’s tough for girls now because there are lot of girl votes that go for the boys. You never know on this show. The three that are left they all have the biggest chance to win. They’re all going to bring it each week. I know the are! So it’s going to be tough for America, I know that.”
Is Jessica Sanchez capable of pulling off a win?
“She’s amazing. She’s definitely capable of winning. And so is Josh and so is Phillip. It’s a tough one.”
Which judge or mentor do you feel has given you the best advice?
“I think I’ve always felt loyal to Jennifer, just because she’s always been rooting and always had my back since last year and always believed in me. I think she’s definitely been a big inspiration for me since last year and this year. In my mentor session, I would definitely say Stevie Nicks was a big one for me because we kind of had a moment, and it got really personal and beyond the lines of a singing completion. She really cared about us at that moment and wanted to help.”
What are you going to miss the most about being on Idol and what are you most looking forward to about going on tour?
“All the American Idol crew and production and everyone. It’s so fun working over there with them. They’re all so nice and so lovable. And you just have a good time. That’s going to be hard leaving all that. Even leaving the Idol stage is going to be difficult because we’ve spent so much time there, it’s our new home. We’re all so excited for tour to just start singing for our fans and not being judged and just enjoying…”
•Out of all your fellow competitors, who do you most want to collaborate with?
“I would love to do a duet with Josh. That would be amazing, because he’s amazing.”
What kind of advice would you give your fellow competitors and future competitors on the show?
“I would just say to be confident in yourself and self belief. If you’re going to go for it, go for it. Don’t let anybody steer you in the direction you don’t want to go in. Stay true to yourself. Anything could happen, and you just have to believe that and keep pushing forward. If they try to bring you down, you just pick your head up and you fight harder the next time and prove them wrong.”
•Did you audition for X Factor?
“I wasn’t allowed in because I was under contract with Idol.”
Tell us about the differences between Liverpool and Texas.
“It’s a huge dramatic change. I went from a completely different lifestyle to this lifestyle. It was a good change. My dad moved us out there to be here and follow our dreams here. In England…where I lived…you do the same thing every day. Here there’s so much more to do.”
Hollie’s closing remarks:
“To all my fans. Thank you and thank you for everybody’s questions. I definitely hope to see what happens in the future. To all my hollipops, you’re all amazing. Thank you guys so much.”