Alex Preston On His Elimination and Future Plans (Conference Call Transcript)

_E001496a

American Idol 13 eliminated finalist, Alex Preston, spoke with the press today about his experience on the show, his elimination, and future plans! Read the entire interview here!

Will his single  “I Love this Feeling” ever be released to iTunes? “I really hope so. I’m not actually sure at this moment. It’s an awesome song. I really hope it’s released. I’ll see what’s going on with that and get information out there.”

Who were the songwriters on “I Love This Feeling” “Drew Pearson (Phillip Phillips’ Home) and I forget who…the other songwriter is. The song is amazing. I really hope it’s released.”

Does Alex have original music he will be releasing soon? “I really do want to release as much as I can. I’m already trying to figure out a way to plan my record. I have a couple of co-writes lined up that I do want to get on the album as well. If I could release a single, that would be awesome. I want to get something out there as quick as I can to take advantage of this wave of publicity the show has given me.”

What is he most excited about the finale? “I am probably most excited about [singing with Jason Mraz}. Also I’m really excited to see Jena and Caleb in their performances, because they are both so good. I’d be happy with either one of them winning this whole thing.”

How does Alex respond to Jena and Caleb’s big performances? “It’s awesome. But I can’t do that. It’s not who I am. It’s television, and people love seeing that stuff. But I always wanted to stay true to who I am.”

Alex shares something interesting about Jena and Caleb, “They are both so nice. It’s crazy. We hang out all the time. Jena is just like one of the guys. She’s so fun to hang out with. Caleb and I have actually been roommates since the beginning. We’re the only roommates left. He’s a super cool dude. We get along really great.”

How does he make a song his own? “When I hear the song, I think of how I would do it. I usually take an hour or so and run through the song–run through alternative chordal structures. Then I meet with my vocal and arrangement coaches and we spend quite awhile on another arrangement that fits my style. I think that’s how I really had the most fun this season is making those arrangements my own. It was a blast.”

Which judge helped him improve the most throughout the competition? “All of them helped me. Harry’s feedback was always really spot on and honest. I always took all of their criticism to heart.”

Did moving out of his comfort zone to work the stage and the audience affect how he’ll perform when he’s out on his own tour? “Totally. This competition has really taken me out of my shell. I’ve learned a lot more about myself as a performer. I’ve become more competent as a performer myself, too. I can’t wait to play drums, and all these different instruments when I play live.”

Was he surprised to be eliminated? Was he expecting it? “I was expecting it. Jena and Caleb are so good. There performances are so big. I knew deep down that it was going to be them in the finale.

During Wednesday night’s performance show, Alex sang three songs, none of which he picked himself. Would the outcome have been different if he could have selected the songs himself? “I thought the song choices were great. I was really happy with them. Picking your own songs is obviously a lot more comforting. But, having these really respected industry professionals pick out songs for you that they think you would do well is kind of an honor. It was a fun experience having Randy and the judges and our hometowns pick out songs for us.”

How did his friendship with Jason Mraz initially start? “I’m really good friends with the winners of X Factor, Alex & Sierra. They introduced me to their friends Nancy and Michael Natter and they actually wrote, “I Won’t Give Up” and a bunch of songs on Jason’s new album. They called me up and invited me to go get coffee with Jason. It just sparked from there. Then he came on the show. Now we’re doing a duet on the finale. It’s a crazy chain of connections.”

How did he meet Alex & Sierra? “They messaged me on twitter that they dug my style and wanted to meet up. It kind of clicked from there. We hang out all the time now–go to the movies and hang out at their apartment. They’re really good friends of mine, and Caleb also and Sam. We’re all really tight with them.

Did he take into consideration that Alex & Sierra sang “Say Something” when he chose to sing it on Idol? “It actually didn’t cross my mind. Before I sang that, I didn’t know they sang it as well. I looked it up on Youtube. They killed it. It’s cool that [we] have such similar styles in music and taste in music.”

He’s very honest on social media. Were the contestants given any parameters on by the producers on what they could and couldn’t say? “Not really. I usually like to keep it real. I feel like my followers and my fans were the only reason I got to this point. They deserve to know who I really am, and they deserve to know what’s really on my mind. I wouldn’t be anywhere without them. I like to interact with them.”

What’s on the Horizon for Alex? “I am hoping to get into the studio and record an album and definitely, I want to write with as many artists and songwriters as I can–really start collaborating and working this wave of publicity that American Idol has offered me.”

Did he have any personal goals coming into the competition? “I always set smaller goals while I was on the show. When I was in Top 30, I wanted to make it to the 15 and then the [top] 10. Once I hit Top 3, I was like ‘Wow. This is Top 3 of American Idol! No matter what happens, this is really awesome!’ Once I hit Top 3, I just really started thinking about a couple months from now, and where I want to be. I’m starting to set more long term goals for the future outside of this television show.”

How difficult was it to soldier on with bronchitis during this week’s performances? “I didn’t have any vocal hemorrhages or anything.  [But] I wasn’t in top shape at all. I’m on a couple of anti-biotics and steroids for asthma. It kind of affected [my voice]. I could feel the strain. I knew that’s what happens in this business and you just got to push through it.”

Alex is a multi-instrumentalist. How did he learn all of them? “I never really took lessons. I took maybe 3 or 4 guitar lessons in my life and two or three vocal lessons. That’s about it. When I was younger I took violin and piano, but that was when I was really young. After that, I fell in love with learning new instruments and writing songs on new instruments. I thought it brought a really interesting flavor to songwriting–different tones like mandolin and ukulele–all these different things. I just love buying weird, exotic instruments and messing around with them. It’s one of my favorite things to do.”

Will we see any of those instruments on the tour? “I do want to pull out as many instruments as I can on tour, for sure.”

Alex had just talked to Season 10 alum, Casey Abrams, on the phone, “We’re really good friends. We hung out a bunch of times. He’s one of the coolest dudes. He just called up to say he was proud of me and that we should jam this weekend.”

How does it make him feel to be labeled a “true artist” by the judges? “I think it’s awesome. I love hearing that because that is what I wanted to give off this season is kind of an original vibe. The fact that the judges were picking up on it, and America was picking up on it, meant a lot to me–made me think that I was doing something right.”

What were his expectations when he auditioned for American Idol? How has it changed now that he’s made it to the Top 3? “When I first auditioned, I never even expected to make it through. Top 3–it flew by, man. It’s a dream come true. I can’t wait to see what’s next.”

What was it like doing an original on the show? “Playing original music on the show was definitely an amazing opportunity because it was in front of millions of people. That’s your own lyrics and composition that your playing. It’s a really cool feeling. I think that original music being allowed on a national television [show] such as American Idol is kind of, like, awesome and pushes it to the next level because it starts to show the artistry in all the singers. I think that’s a good thing.”

What did you learn on your American Idol journey? “I learned a lot about myself as a performer and a musician and as an artist. We worked with so many professionals in pretty much every aspect of performance. I never knew that there was [so] much that went into something like this–meeting with choreography, and stylists, vocal coaches and arrangement coaches. It was an absolutely insane and educational experience, for sure.”

How will he evolve as an artist? “My main thing is definitely performing. I wanna perform for the rest of my life. I also on the side, want to do songwriting with other artists. That’s so fun to collaborate with other artists. It’s still a great way to express yourself and share different ideas with people who are doing the same thing as you.”

On his relationship with girlfriend, Jillian Jensen, whom he met during Hollywood Week. How does the rules of dating and starting a relationship change when you’re in a situation as unique and as stressful as American Idol? “It’s hard, because we’re on opposite sides of the country. It works out, because we’re both musicians and we can always talk, skype. She comes out to shows a lot. I’m going to be going home before the tour. It does suck, because we can’t see each other as much as we’d like to. But, we’re both in the same industry, so we both understand.”

Jillian was on the X Factor a few seasons ago. Did she have any unique advice for him? “I would always be really like ‘Oh, I did horrible’ or ‘I’m leaving this week’ and she would always be completely honest with me, whether it would be a good thing or a bad thing. She helped me through a lot in that aspect. That kept me going.”

On the last minute change from original songs during Top 4 week. Was it hard learning new songs at the last minute? “That was tough. But, we were all going to play original songs. We had to switch it to a different song last minute. I feel like it’s the name of the game. It’s just part of the business.  There’s always last minute switches that you need to be prepared for. It was tough, but we all made it through.”

Is he planning to move from New Hampshire to a bigger city? “I do want to move to either Nashville or Los Angeles, or maybe even New York City. But I’m not quite sure which one yet. I have some thinking to do.”

Does he have one favorite memory from the experience that really sticks out? “The home visit was incredible. Especially the concert at the end. There were thousands and thousands of people in this arena and I really got to show people who I really am. That was probably the coolest experience for me.”

What was running through his mind when he hit the big Idol stage for the first time? “I was incredibly nervous, but I was also really excited. On stage is where I can really show who I am. I was excited to show America what I could do. I was glad I got that opportunity.”

Does Alex plan on collaborating with Sam Woolf some day? “Yes. Totally. We’re already talking about it. Hopefully we can do some stuff on tour as well. A lot of people have been really, really pushing us to get something out there together. Hopefully that works out. I’m sure we’re going to collaborate.”

They had the doctor on stage to explain Caleb’s vocal cord injury. It got mentioned a lot during the show. His illness didn’t come up at all. Was it his decision to keep a lid on that? “I didn’t really want to say anything, really. I remember Harry during Hollywood Week was, like, ‘Don’t tell us you’re sick, because that will just take our attention away from the performance. We’ll focus on that.’ I wasn’t as sick as Caleb, obviously. He had the vocal hemorrhages. I wasn’t completely there, but I didn’t want people [to know] during the performance.”

Closing remarks: “…I want to thank all of my fans who have gotten me to this point. I never expected to get here at all. I love you guys…”

According to USA Today, Alex plans to write songs with Jason Mraz. It bodes well for Alex that he loves to collaborate! Idol should at least open the door to interest from some wonderful co-writers and producers willing to work with him.

About mj santilli 30961 Articles
Founder and editor of mjsbigblog.com, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!