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May 7, 2009
'American Idol': Allison says 'I've got personality!'


Fed up with Simon Cowell taking pot shots at her personality, "American Idol" finalist Allison Iraheta - all of 17 years - says that on Tuesday night, after her performance (and Simon's jab), it was time to stand up for herself.

"I'm not boring, so I might as well talk!"

On Wednesday, Allison was eliminated with a couple weeks to go before the finale. And she has no regrets about talking back, even tough it goes against how she's been raised.

Allison spoke to "Idol" reporters Thursday after little sleep and the task of packing her belongings and leaving the show's mansion, her home for almost two months. Here's what she had to say.

Q: Based on the critiques Tuesday night, Danny's (Gokey) "Dream On" had many thinking he would be ushered out. How were you feeling being next to him at the end last night?
A: "It was weird. I've been in the bottom three several times so I've been prepared to go. When it was me and him, I knew one of us would go. But I'm happy I made it so far and for the opportunity to be on that stage.

Q: The performance with you and Adam (Lambert) on the duet was magical. How did the two of you pick that song and how were the duets set up?
A: We (the contestants) chose our pairings. Adam and I had thought about doing a duet for awhile. When we saw 'Slow Ride' was on the list, we said let's do it. And it was soooo fun! We're definitely planning on doing the song on the tour this summer.

Q: What do you think of having four judges? Good idea or bad?
A: Change is good. I love Kara (DioGuardi). I think it's awesome that the show changes it up because you don't want to be stuck seeing the same thing. I like the fact that the judges said I was different. It made me stay true to myself during this long ride.

Q: Being the last girl in the competition, did you take a lot of ribbing from the guys?
A: They would pick on me. If someone had an argument and I jumped in they would tell me to stay out 'because you're only 12!' It was like family. We all got along really well. And they actually helped me in the competition.

Q: What was it like working with Slash?
A: You have no idea. When I heard it was Slash (as the mentor) I was so eager to meet him because I've been a big fan. I got to sing while he was playing for us (pictured). He was one of the best mentors we've had - hands down.

Q: How shaken were you and the guys by the accident ("Idol" tower slipping) that blocked rehearsals on Tuesday? Did it distract you?
A: The stage manager (Debbie Williams) is a great friend of ours. We were made aware of how she was doing. We were told she was going to be OK, so we were able to go on. That day was not going well. During our performances, we started off shakey, then got into place and did what we had to do.

Q: You got a lot of comments about your fashion and hair. Did anything that was said bum you out?
A: It did. Come on, I'm singing here! But I think overall they (the judges) were looking for what you could do best as an artist. There were some risks with the dressing. I loved my hair, though. Adam's stylist has been doing his hair for two years. She hooked me up.

Q: With your farewell performance, you pulled out all the stops. Did you feel like there was more at stake?
A: Well, I was crying and singing a song called 'Cry Baby.' It felt different. I knew there was no judging, so I said give it all you've got. It was my last time performing, so I wanted to leave on a good note.

Of course, Allison will be on the "American Idols" summer tour. Tickets go on sale Saturday. For more information, click here. The Sacramento/Arco Arena stop is July 10.

As for next week's Top 3, they'll be heading to their hometowns for some much-needed parades, autograph signings, private plane/limo rides, etc. That's when they (Kris Allen, Danny Gokey and Adam Lambert) find out what the judges have picked for them to sing next Tuesday, along with one of their own personal favorites.

Oh, and about all the rumors that Simon will depart the show next year because of all his commitments abroad, the New York Daily News reports he's prepping to move into a $22 million, 11,550-square-foot Beverly Hills mansion outfitted with a full-sized tanning machine and a smaller "booster" facial tanning machine. There's a gym, spa, steam room and lap pool. And what would a man in his position be without a butler and a live-in maid.

Eat your heart out Susan Boyle!

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