There was a rather common misconception that, during her time on “American Idol,” dreadlocked dynamo Crystal Bowersox didn’t actually care about winning the show at all. So it seemed oddly fitting to many that she ended up finishing second, behind champ Lee DeWyze . But while Bowersox is fine with her runner-up status, she wants to make one thing abundantly clear: She always wanted to come out on top.
“I wouldn’t have tried out if I didn’t think I had a shot at winning,” she told MTV News on Tuesday (June 1). “But it’s a weird confliction, because, to me, music shouldn’t be about competition; it’s about expression, it’s emotive, it’s all those things. But at the same time, the industry is a big competition and who can sell the most records. So it was a little strange for me, but I really tried to give it my best and sing songs I could relate to and that I thought other people could relate to. … I had a strategy.”
And thanks to that strategy — and, you know, her prodigious voice — she kept advancing in the competition. But on the morning of the “Idol” finale, she had an epiphany: No matter how hard she had worked, DeWyze was going to win.
“I tried not to think about it too much, but Wednesday morning, I woke up, and I had a strange, calm feeling. In my mind, I predicted Lee to win. … And whatever reason that’s based on, it was just a feeling I had, and, uh, I was right,” she smiled. “And I was prepared for that. I was OK with whatever happened, and I gave the whole thing my best shot, and I’m cool with number two, you know? We’re both going to be really successful, and I’m really proud of Lee.”
One week later, Bowersox is still happy DeWyze won — “he’s worked really hard … I think he’s great and he deserved it,” she said — and she wouldn’t have traded one second of her time on “Idol” for anything in the world, no matter what you may have read about her during her time on the show. It was, she said, one of the most fateful decisions of her life, and she’s incredibly grateful for the opportunities it’s already provided for her — especially since there was a time, not too long ago, when she never would’ve auditioned.
“I mean, I’m surprised I even got in! I figured that when they saw me at the stadium auditions, they’d be like, ‘Who’s this girl? She looks like she came off the street!’ ” she said. “I’m blessed that I’ve made it as far as I have. … Before the show, a lot of people had been like, ‘Oh, try out for “Idol”!’ and I said, ‘No, it’s not my thing.’ But since the show allowed instruments — thank goodness they did that, or else I wouldn’t be here — I decided to give it a shot. And, yeah, I’m grateful I did.”
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