|On his goals:
"In this arena, I donít set goals
because itís part of my realist nature. But there are things I want to
do. I always wanted to sing on the Macyís Thanksgiving parade and Iím doing
it! I want to have a second album."
On being able to sing:
"I donít think Iím the best singer
ever. I donít think Iím better than all 32 of those people who sang. I
still donít. Kim Locke is going to do well. Sheís already been signed
to Curb Records and she has an album coming out I think the same day as
Rubenís. Her first single is better than mine."
"Actually, I donít hate
cats, Iím just kind of afraid of them."
"I donít think I gave anybody
a reason to bully me. The thing about bullies is if you show them that
youíre intimidated and youíre upset by them, theyíre gonna keep doing it.
Iíd be, ďForget you, thenĒ and walk away. I donít let things get under
my skin as much as some people do."
On kids with disabilities:
"...kids without disabilities
learn a lot from kids with disabilities. There are so many things that
are so much bigger than what to wear that day. I donít feel sorry for children
with disabilities. I feel excited for them for the opportunities that they
On being a role model:
"You can be a good one or a bad
one. I got to this point and itís a high profile job and on top of that,
there are the rigors and pressures of being in the public eye all the time.
And my absolute priority, more than having a good song, is to set a good
example. I accept it as a responsibility."
On living in Los Angeles:
"The traffic is horrible. The
people can be kinda nuts. The food has avocado on it everywhere you go.
I donít dislike L.A. The weather is nice, but itís always the same. I love
seasons. I like snow. I like the leaves to change color. If I lived in
Raleigh Iíd get all of that in the same yard."
On close female friends:
"You donít have to be either dating
or not friends. There can be a middle ground and thatís what a platonic
relationship is. I think platonic relationships can be closer than dating
relationships sometimes. Dating relationships end and platonic relationships
are going to be there no matter what."
On biggest lesson he learned
from the Americal Idol experience:
"Perseverance. I got cut twice.
I got cut in Charlotte. I didnít have to go to Atlanta to audition. I could
have said, ďIím not cut out for this.Ē But I said, ďI think Iím better
than that, I can go try again.Ē So I went to Atlanta and I made it through.
Then I got cut the first time around. I could have told them I didnít want
to come back for the Wild Card show but I did and look how far I got."
On his fame and lack of privacy:
"There are many days where Iím
willing to do it, to trade places with my friends who are teaching back
in North Carolina. There are days where Iím ready to give it up."
"I think there's a difference
between appearance and image. An image is not how you look. It's what you
do. It's what you portray. Your personality, the example you set, and that's
huge for me."
"It's a pop-flavored album. I
think there's a lot of people out there who may not be the best influence
for kids. I wouldn't want my kids listening to some of the stuff out there.
None of the stuff on the album is like that."
glory never comes from falling, but from rising each time you fall."
that I make a difference in some way. It's not necessarily how I make a
difference, but I want to make sure that I do."
his definition of an Americal Idol: "American celebrities have an amazing
amount of influence on the way America thinks, feels, and acts. I think
that such an influence should be used in the most positive way possible."
"Someone with a talent that leaves a mark on American society and inspires
people to think, feel, love, act."
singing and that's what I'm here to do. I know I'm not a model; I'm not
going to be. I'm not the best lookin' person here, and that's fine. That's
not what it's about to me."
out of this is what God wants to happen."
looked like this what are you talking about?"
wicked sense of humor)
get cut tonight; I just didn't win." (You've won my heart)
Stone' Magazine: "I'm really not that special. Really, I'm not. It
was just a T.V show.
shoot: "I think I've broken three cameras today."
Oh his makeover:
"I'm not different. I'm not different at all. The wrapping is different
but the gift is still the same."
On the pressures
of being in the public eye: "...as long as you're living right,
then you don't have
about what people see."
the money. It's not the fame. It's the influence."
that I've got big ears and a big forehead and that my hair sticks up, but
I'm happy with myself. I'm not necessarily trying to win a beauty pageant
sang 'Somewhere Out There,' Simon said, 'You're the one to beat.' Getting
a compliment from Simon is like getting water out of a rock."
I think this is something God had planned for me."
understand why people like me! It doesn't make any sense!"
that I make a difference in some way. If it's performing and touching someone
that way, that's great; if it's being a teacher and helping some kid understand
something, that's even better..."
the first things I'm gonna do is set up a foundation. Since I'm not
going to be teaching for a while, I'd still like to stay connected and
use this platform to bring attention to autism awareness and to individuals
Raleigh six months ago, and nobody knew who I was. It's very hard
to get used to."
six foot one...". "When you stand beside Ruben, you look short."
happy, cuz America didn't go with the image thing so much this year."
whole team of people working 24 hours around the clock to make me look
Ruben and I will always be linked together in everyone's minds. I think
we're a pair now."
us to sing a song by our idol. Well, my mother's really my idol,
so I'm gonna sing her favorite song for me to sing: "Unchained Melody"
by the Righteous Brothers."
take Simon too seriously either."
not that special. Really, I'm not. I was on a big TV show, but it was just
a TV show."
and I don't know what day it is."
knew that people made a club for me!"
I'm from North Carolina, you think I'm the Andy Griffith show, or something?"
"Half my butt is mac & cheese
and the other half is Krispy Kreme..."
About biggest challenge: "Getting
used to [my new contact lenses]. I'm sure I was looking at
Randy once when Paula was talking."
"I'm not going to unpack, I'm
just going to live out of my suitcase. I don't want to get too used to
To 'The Jaded Journalist':
"Is this interview prepared at all, or it is fly by the seat of your
"Can I be the next bachelor?"
"I never thought I'd be an object of affection. That's the biggest surprise
of the whole experience!"
"In an interview with Disc Jockey
"Java Joel": Joel teasingly sang a bar of 'Unchained Melody',
trying to get Clay to sing with him...which Clay didn't do. Afterwards,
Joel asked Clay,"What is your favorite song to sing?"
Clay replied, "Well, it was
'Unchained Melody' until you sang it!"