HOLLYWOOD — Jordin Sparks had a lot to contend with on the sixth season of “American Idol.”
The 17-year-old from Glendale, Arizona, was up against an award-winning beatboxer, a professional diva and a ponyhawk. But the teen’s power notes and infectious energy prevailed: Sparks claimed the “Idol” title on Wednesday (see “Sparks Flies: Jordin Takes ‘American Idol’ Crown” ).
We caught up with Sparks after another wacky finale (see “Sanjaya, Carrie Underwood Still Stealing Spotlight — On ‘American Idol’ Finale Red Carpet” ) to talk about Ryan’s obligatory dramatic pause, her future album (and its title) and what advice she got from “Idol” winners past.
MTV: How are you feeling? This must be insane, right?
Jordin Sparks: I’m feeling so good right now. I can’t believe this. It’s so crazy. I never would have thought.
MTV: Take us to that moment right before Seacrest’s painful, painful pause.
Sparks: Every time! We expect [a dramatic pause], and it still just makes you cringe when it happens. But I don’t know. I was just standing there. Me and Blake were just standing there, holding hands, and he was like, “I love you. Please, if I forget the words, will you sing with me?” I said, “Yeah! Only if you sing with me if I forget the words.” And so I told him that I loved him too, and he was so amazing. And I was nervous, and Ryan did that pause, and I was like, “Oh my gosh.” And then he said my name, and I was just completely overwhelmed. My heartbeat was pounding in my ears. I couldn’t hear anything. I saw people screaming, but I couldn’t hear them. But it was just one of those moments that I think I’ll always remember. People will tell me to look back on it, and I’ll be like, “I know exactly what I was doing, I know what I was thinking.” It will be one of those.
MTV: What can we expect from the Jordin Sparks album?
Sparks: The Jordin Sparks album! Oh my gosh!
MTV: Do you have a title yet?
MTV: You gotta come up with a title, girl!
Sparks: When I was younger, I wanted my first album to be Smile. But that’s kinda cheesy now.
MTV: Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys picked that title, but you could do it again!
Sparks: I know, right? I don’t know the title, but I would love to infuse all sorts of genres into it. I love all different types of music, so I would just love to do that and add my own little Jordin spin on it. Hopefully people will like it.
MTV: It better have the power notes.
Sparks: Yup, there will be. I promise.
MTV: Have you watched the tape back of Tuesday night’s performance yet?
MTV: Well, when you do, you need to look for Melinda Doolittle’s face. Because when you hit one note, her jaw is on the floor.
MTV: Did you see her in the audience?
Sparks: I did. I looked at her. I looked at all of [this year's finalists]. I love them. We’re all so close. To see them out there, it was really cool because they’re so supportive. … [Seeing them out there] kinda gave me the strength to not break down when I was starting to cry [on Tuesday], but it was good.
MTV: It seemed like the top 12 this year were really close, more so than past seasons.
Sparks: We are. It’s been a really good group and really fun. We all get along so well. We all hang out together and laugh all the time. We just have a great time together. Touring is going to be so much fun.
MTV: What can we expect on the tour?
Sparks: I have no idea. I don’t even know what I’m gonna do on it yet, but it’s gonna be a great show because I think everybody is gonna get to do what genre they love the most and what fits them best, so probably some acoustics, some duets. I don’t know. Just a couple of different things. Hopefully we’ll make a good show for you guys.
MTV: Did you get to hang out with any of the past “Idol” winners backstage?
Sparks: Ruben [Studdard], he was so cool. Just chillin’. And he was like, “Hey, girl, we match!” We didn’t even plan this, but his tux was pink and black and my dress was pink, and so it was cool how it worked out. And Taylor [Hicks] came out with me last night, and he was just like, “Enjoy the ride. It’s gonna be fast, but it’s gonna be fun.” Kelly [Clarkson] was really nice. And Carrie [Underwood] was beautiful, as always. She was so sweet. It was really cool talking to all of them.