'American Idol' Finalist Allison Iraheta Shrugs Off Simon's Dis: 'He Doesn't Know Me'

Judge said 16-year-old had a boring personality, but he had nothing but praise for her voice.

While viewers might have remembered Allison Iraheta's flame-red hair from Hollywood Week, no one could have predicted the 16-year-old's powerful showing during Wednesday night's performance show. Her scratchy wail fit perfectly on the Heart anthem "Alone," formally introducing us to the Los Angeles teen and earning her a spot in the top 12, along with Adam Lambert and Kris Allen.

We caught up with Allison to talk about Simon's comments on her lack of a personality, what it's like to be the youngest contestant on the show and more.

Q: Were you concerned about singing "Alone" when so many past "Idol" contestants have tackled that song?

A: I did think about the fact that [artist id="1933910"]Carrie [Underwood][/artist] did it and past Idols that did that song and did it really well. But I really focused on me and how I would do the song. And give it a little taste of what I can do. Not change it, but we're different. Just give it a little of me.

Q: What did you think about Simon's comments that you had a dull personality?

A: He doesn't know me, because he said I was boring. Honestly, I'm not. I guess I was nervous a little. Who isn't gonna be nervous before they sing for the first time? I guess I'll just chill a little bit more, because the nerves got me.

Q: How did you feel when Paula compared you to Kelly Clarkson?

A: I have to take that compliment, because that's a big one. It's [artist id="1231768"]Kelly Clarkson[/artist]! She's amazing. And I really admire her a lot, so I thought that was pretty great.

Q: What genre are you most comfortable singing?

A: I'm really trying to go down one lane of, I guess, rockish pop. Something that can really show my style.

Q: Did you ever think about waiting a few years before auditioning for "Idol," or did you want to just jump right in?

A: I've been wanting to audition since 9, since I was that little. I had my face by that TV screen and wishing I was on the show. It would have been the same. I would've still wanted it as much as I do now.

Q: Are you worried that it's a disadvantage to be the youngest on the show?

A: I think it doesn't matter what the age is, or if I'm the youngest, or whatev. I think it comes down to the same thing. We're all here for the same thing. It depends on how much we want it and how much we prepare.

Q: Since you're from Los Angeles, you didn't have to travel too far for the competition. What's it like performing in your backyard?

A: It's pretty awesome! It feels good to be here. I know a lot of the other contestants are like, "I want to go back home!" They miss their home. But I'm like, "Yay, I'm already here!"

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