George Huff’s “American Idol” experience was full of ups and downs. The 22-year-old omelet chef from New Orleans was not among the original 32 singers selected for the semifinals, but he was invited back after another contestant dropped out. He was cut again and then brought back again for the wildcard round, where Simon Cowell made him his pick for the finals. There, Huff was an early favorite, garnering rave reviews, but as the weeks went by the judges said he got boring, and Huff was eventually the eighth contestant eliminated.
MTV: You were always smiling on the show. You seem so happy. Was there anything you didn’t like about being on “Idol”?
George Huff: I like everything about the show, and the thing I like most is that they really nurture you big time. [When I woke up] this morning I had butterflies in my stomach. It’s like, ’Oh boy, I’m going out there into the world now. This is it, George. Whatchu gon’ do?’ So, yeah, the show is very good, very good.
MTV: Do you think how you got on the show — being a reserve and then a wildcard — made you more humble, or is that your personality?
Huff: You know, I go to church a whole lot. And it’s always better to just … be grateful for everything. Where I come from … in New Orleans, living in the projects and everything, it makes you appreciate every little bitty thing that comes along. You’re thankful about the little things, and the sky’s the limit to what you can have.
MTV: This was a hard season in terms of the theme weeks. Did you enjoy being forced to sing a lot of different things?
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Huff: I enjoyed all of the genres of music. I don’t think none of them were really challenging.
MTV: The other night, Simon said Fantasia and La Toya were in their own league. And earlier, when Matthew got voted out, he said he knew he wasn’t going to win and that he couldn’t compete with La Toya and Fantasia. Was there a sense around the house that those two girls are the front-runners?
Huff: Everybody in the competition hopes to win the competition, and I was certainly one of those people. You have to go in knowing that what you have is legit and that you can win the competition. And it’s anybody’s game right now, and I’m gonna be watching the television like everyone else.
MTV: More than any other season, it seems like you guys are really strong friends. How did you guys become so close?
Huff: I can’t explain. Everybody has good personalities … and when you have a bunch of good personalities working together, you don’t have the crazy stuff that goes on.
MTV: What’s next for you?
Huff: Hopefully this CD does really well. [He holds up American Idol Season 3: Greatest Soul Classics.] That’s my face right there. I’m singing a song called ’Me and Mrs. Jones.’ We got a thing going on, but it’s wrong. People, don’t be having no thing going on with no Mrs. Jones, because that’s bad, but I am singing the song, and it was a fun song to sing. … And then I’m looking forward to just recording my CD.
MTV: What kind of style can we expect?
Huff: I’ll do a soul-classic-type style of music. I even thought about doing what I’ve been doing in the competition — that is, to do classics of every [genre] that [soulful] way. It’s really weird, but it’s a good idea.
MTV: What’s the secret to a great omelet?
Huff: The secret to a great omelet is to have me behind the stove cooking it, but I don’t want to cook no omelets, I want to be on television and to sing for y’all. But make sure you have enough oil, so that when you flip the omelet, it goes like this: ’Whoosh!’ … And some good eggs and cheese and … Oh, I’m hungry, I’m so hungry right now. I’mma go eat, y’all. Make sure you have all the goodies in there, anything you want to put in there, it’s all good. Shake it for your ’hood.