Former 'Idol' Says It Doesn't Matter Who The Judges Are
By Denise Warner Posted Oct 7th 2009 04:35PM
Elliott Yamin has a lot on his plate. He has a new single off of his second album called 'Can't Keep on Loving You,' and is going on tour with the USO to Guam and Okinawa. But the third-place finisher from season five of 'American Idol' had time to sit down and talk with us about his music, his World Series predictions, and why he thinks it doesn't matter who sits at the judges' table.
Listen to 'Can't Keep on Loving You'
Listen to 'Can't Keep on Loving You'
Elliott Yamin Visits PopEater
"It's got a real melodic track to it. And it's just a real honest, genuine song about falling in love with somebody from a distance and wanting to get closer to that person," Elliott Yamin says of his single, 'Can't Keep on Loving You'
Ben Trivett, PopEater
Ben Trivett, PopEater
Tell me about your single, 'Can't Keep on Loving You':
It's got a real melodic track to it. And it's just a real honest, genuine song about falling in love with somebody from a distance and wanting to get closer to that person.
What attracted you to this song?
It was pitched to me ... [and] I just fell in love with the lyrics first and foremost when I heard [it.]
How does it feel to have your second album out?
Oh man, it feels great. Just to have the opportunity to put out a second album, to continue to have some moderate success on the radio is a dream come true. A lot of artists don't even get the chance to make a second album and you know I'm just glad I'm still here and able to make music. That's all I ever wanted to do.
Who would you say are your biggest musical influences?
My mom was my first musical influence. She was a solo singer back in the day. She never really gained success out of local notoriety back home, but she was the first person that ever really influenced me to sing. She was always constantly singing around the house, singing around me and my brother. Then you know, you got guys like Donny Hathaway and Sam Cook and Ottis Redding, Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye. All those guys are who I really looked up to as a young kid.
Is there anyone that you want to work with?
People always ask me that question and I'd love to work with anybody and everybody. I'd love to be on some hip-hop tracks. I'd love to have some vocals on hip-hop tracks and collaborate with some rappers. I think that would be really cool. I love hip-hop. It would be cool to see how I could lend my voice to that genre.
You're going on tour with the USO, tell me about that.
This will be our second tour with the USO, last year they reached out to my management team and I said of course, let's do it. It's the least you can do as an entertainer to give back to the soldiers and the military and the troops who put their lives in front of ours everyday to defend our freedom. It was a no brainer. We jumped at the chance to do it last year and they sent us over to Europe ... This year they are sending us over to Guam and Okinawa. It's cool. On one hand we've chosen both times to go over to the Middle East, but you have to go where you're needed and wherever the Pentagon sends you -- which is so crazy to say, the Pentagon is sending you somewhere.
Did you ever think you'd be saying that?
Never in my wildest dreams. It's so funny I always chuckle when I say that ... But the cool thing is that bases like Guam and Okinawa and places other than the Middle East, that's where I guess they are hurting the most for entertainment. Obviously since the war started a lot of those places get looked over for entertainment because the focus is on bringing entertainment to where the war is, which is understandable. It really means a lot ... when you go to places in Asia or Europe where they may not see as much entertainment as they are used to.
Are you still watching 'Idol'?
Of course. I don't get to see it on time, I'm usually never home when it airs. But I've discovered the wonderful world of DVR.
Do you keep in touch with anyone?
I'm good friends with Ace [Young]. Taylor [Hicks] is probably my best friend from the show ... Bucky [Covington] is a good buddy of mine ... We're all a tight-knit group. We formed a lot of eternal bonds with these guys.
What do you think about Ellen DeGeneres as the new judge?
I think she's great. I honestly couldn't care less who the judges are.
In the end, does it matter?
It really doesn't. I don't think it's going to affect the ratings, I don't think it's going to have any bearing on how many people watch the show. However, I think Ellen is great, I think Paula is great. I think Paula's going to be great in whatever it is she chooses to do. I know that Ellen is real passionate about music, just like Paula is. She's funny, she's got a great personality. She's an absolute doll ... I'm looking forward to seeing her and how she fits that role.
In the battle of the eight Idol winners – who do you think is the best?
I think it's obvious – it's either Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood because they've seen the most commercial success post-'Idol.'
I read recently that you're a big Los Angeles Angels fan?
Are you ready for the playoffs?
Do you have any World Series predictions?
It's a little too early, I don't want to be too over zealous. Since we've been there, it's been tough to get back there ... I can guarantee you this, if they are back in the World Series, I will be at my first ever World Series game. I've never been.
Would you sing at the game?
I'd love to.
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