Saturday, May 8, 2010

Allison Iraheta: ‘Idol’ finalist talks about ‘firsts’ – including first trip to Manila

By Yong B. Chavez
Philippine News

LOS ANGELES -- She breezed into the interview room all-smiles and with none of the diva attitude that emerging stars seem to wear as a uniform in young Hollywood.

Possessing one of the most unique voices in the recording industry today, Allison Iraheta, American Idol season 8's raspy-voiced rocker, has won the respect and admiration of fans and music industry players alike since taking the Idol stage last year and finishing as the best-performing female contestant in one of the show's most memorable seasons.

With her fierce, emotionally-bare performances and sunny disposition off-stage, Iraheta is a refreshing talent, someone that stands out in an era of auto-tuned and manufactured performers.

Prone to speaking her mind and unwilling to be anyone but herself, the young singer is proud of how much creative control she was able to assert in making her debut album, "Just Like You".

"I had a lot of control, and I was definitely grateful for that. They sent me songs that they thought suited me, and I chose the ones that I could really relate to," she says. During recording, she also gave a lot of feedback on which tracks she thought worked best with her voice and which didn't.

Iraheta says being able to come out with a good debut album contributes to her long-term goal: longevity. "Ten years from now, hopefully, I'll still be singing and will be known for the music I write."

She recently made a stop in the Philippines for a promo tour. "It's my first trip abroad on my own. I'm 18! I'm so stoked," Iraheta said. She turned 18 on April 27, a week before performing to Manila.

In honor of her first international concert as a recording artist and her first trip abroad since turning 18, the singer shared her other firsts in an exclusive interview.

Yong Chavez: What was your first memory of singing?
Allison Iraheta: (At) La Curacao (laughs). It was called Dias delos Ninos. They closed the parking structure. It was a huge stage, and there was a bunch of people. They had me sing “Mi Ranchito, My Little Ranch.” I was 7, I think. I remember my dad recorded it and when we looked back at it, it was shaking so much, and we were like 'What's going on?' And he said, 'I was so nervous.' It was the first time for me and I will never forget it."

What's the first big mistake that you ever made?
Jeez. And this is anything? Eat wasabi. It was so gross! I can't handle it. No, thank you.

What was your first paycheck? How much was it?
Um, La Curacao (laughs). Actual first real good paycheck... Don't remember. The only thing I can remember was the $50 thousand for Telemundo (TV reality show) Quinceañera, the one that I won.

You were supposed to get a recording contract from them, too, right? Didn't happen?
To read the full article: Philippine News

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