Ousted 'American Idol' Scott MacIntyre thrilled about judges' deadlock
By John Bracchitta, 04/09/2009
Scott MacIntyre isn't upset that American Idol's judges couldn't unanimously agree to use their new "The Judges' Save" veto ability to prevent his elimination after he was revealed to be the week's low vote-getter during Wednesday night's live results show broadcast on Fox.
"I was actually very thrilled to know that it was a split decision between the four judges, and that was something very nice for me to walk away with knowing that the decision was split, it wasn't unanimous," the legally blind 23-year-old from Scottsdale, AZ told reporters during a media conference call on Thursday.
Two of Idol's four judges -- Paula Abdul and Kara DioGuardi -- were in favor of using the veto right to prevent MacIntyre's elimination on Wednesday night, however all four judges must be in unanimous agreement in order for the "save" to be utilized.
MacIntyre added that dealing with his ouster became even easier after Idol judge Simon Cowell told him that his decision not to vote in favor of using "The Judges' Save" on MacIntyre hadn't been an easy one for him.
"Even talking to Simon after the show he told me -- and I also sensed that -- there was some inner turmoil in him making that decision. So that was very nice for me to walk away with," MacIntyre said.
MacIntyre also told reporters that he had been a little taken aback when American Idol host Ryan Seacrest revealed that only 30,000 votes had separated him from fellow finalist Anoop Desai in the week's voting.
"I thought a few more people should have voted!" he exclaimed with a laugh.
However he added that he had quickly reasoned that an eighth place finish on American Idol was not bad at all, so long as it was taken advantage of and utilized properly.
"I thought it was just amazing because at this stage in the game when everyone has won in their own right in this competition and there's not much difference, well there's more airtime, but there's not much difference between finishing eighth and finishing third," he told reporters.
"It's a small difference, and after that some things change [in the final two], but it's really what you do with the opportunity you've been given."
Although MacIntyre seemingly obliged judge Abdul's earlier request that he step away from the piano which he had previously used for all his final round performances for his Top 8 performance of Survivor's "The Search is Over," he told reporters that he had actually made the switch to "shock America a little bit," and that he hadn't agreed with her suggestion idea that the piano had become a crutch he was relying on -- especially given his performance style.
"Simon said it all that night when [Abdul] suggested that I come out from behind the piano. He replied 'I don't think you'd ever see Billy Joel come out from behind his piano. I don't think you'd see Elton John, Bruce Hornsby, Stevie Wonder come out from behind their pianos,' and from what I've heard they don't if ever," MacIntyre said.
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"That's really where my heart is, at the keyboard, and it's not going to take the place of my vocals or anything of that nature. It's actually just another layer of expressively that I can play beneath my vocals and carry my vocals with it."
In fact, MacIntyre told reporters that it had been fortunate timing that had given them the opportunity to try out for Idol in the first place.
"I've been in school for many years of my life. I'm kind of the 'academic-gone-popstar' in the competition and it just turned out to be the right year, the right time," he said. "I was able to make the audition being back in Arizona after my masters in London and it seemed like the perfect route to go."
He also told reporters that although he had watched Idol since its fifth season, he only became interested in trying out for the show following last season's rule change that now allows contestants to play instruments while performing was implemented.
"I've been following the show since about Season 5. The moment at which I decided to audition was when they rolled the grand piano out on stage last year and I knew I had to be there, "he told reporters. "Just being here now and realizing that dream means the world to me."
MacIntyre said he was already looking forward to show's upcoming tour this summer and admitted that he was going to miss the backstage camaraderie he shared with the other eighth season finalists -- a trait he claimed to have heard was lacking from among Idol's seventh-season finalists.
"It's actually a really interesting group of [finalists] this year... We are actually one of the only groups, apparently, that talk and joke two minutes before we walk onstage. Apparently last year everyone was very silent and in their own world and preparing mentally for the performance, which I try to do as well, but there's an extra element. Even though we're competing we have so much fun, even the second before we walk onstage. It's amazing."