"American Idol" star Clay Aiken said his middle school classmates in Raleigh, N.C., would have been rich had they been paid for every time they teased him.

"They started to pick on me because I sang and because I was in musicals," Aiken said during an interview about bullies on the "Dr. Phil" TV show that aired Tuesday. "I was the only guy in choir in my entire high school. So people picked on me for that."

Aiken said the teasing finally stopped, however.

"People didn't stop picking on me because I found something that I was good at [but] because I found something I was good at and was proud," Aiken said.

Aiken wrote about his middle school experience in North Carolina in his book "Learning to Sing."

Aiken also has the best-selling album among "American Idol" alumni in "Measure of a Man," the New York Post reported.