Sam Woolf's stint on Season 13 of American Idol came to an end last week, just about a month after the judges had used their save on him. Woolf, who recently turned 18, was clearly cast as the "ladies man" of this season. And it became increasingly uncomfortable to watch TPTB (via Jennifer Lopez) try to foist that label on him week after week, surrounding him with gaggles of tween girls, when it was clear that Woolf wanted to just focus on the music.
"Yeah. Ugh, a little bit," Woolf told TVGuide.com this week when asked if he was annoyed by the constant references to his looks. "I didn't want to be under the category 'heartthrob.' I'm not glad to be off the show, but [I'm glad] to not be under that category for the rest of the show."
That wasn't the only thing Woolf took issue with. He (and all of the other Top 5 finalists, judging from tweets) were thrown by last Thursday's "twist" — where Ryan Seacrest asked each contestant to vote to send someone home that night, or keep the group together and send two people home this week. Sam, Jessica Meuse and Caleb Johnson voted to keep the group together, while Alex Preston and Jena Irene voted to drop the axe. But Woolf tells us that in retrospect, he would have changed his vote.
Idol's C.J. Harris on facing adversity as a black country artist
"People are hating on Alex and Jena because they said no, but it's so dumb," he said. "I agreed with them. ... We shouldn't have had the option [to make] that call. That would have been even more stressful, sending two people home in one week."
Because the vote had to be unanimous, one contestant was sent home, and Sam was the unlucky one with the target on his back. But, he says he saw the elimination coming. "I was kind of expecting it, just based on my performance," he said. "I just had a bad night. I wasn't in the right mindset when I was about to go out to perform. It was just a stressful week for me."
Check out Sam's answers to our American Idol exit interview lightning round below — and check out his farewell performance here. Will you miss seeing Sam on the show?
1. Name three albums you would bring with you to a desert island. White Ladder by David Gray. I think I would do one of John Mayer's newer albums, like Born and Raised, and + by Ed Sheeran.
2. What was the first album you fell in love with? I honestly don't remember. I get this question asked a lot, like, what was the first album that you purchased? But I don't even think I've ever purchased a physical copy of an album. I always purchase it on iTunes. [As a kid] I remember listening to a lot of James Taylor and Bob Dylan and ELO.
Season MVPs: The year's best performances
3. If someone wanted to torture you with a song on repeat, what would it be? Any song that pretty much just does the chorus like 30 times and says the same thing. So, pretty much every song out now. (Laughs).
4. Name a song you wish you'd written. There's a song by John Mayer called "In Your Atmosphere." I really like that song.
5. If you could duet with anyone living or dead, who would you pick? Either Ed Sheeran or John Mayer.
6. What's your most embarrassing karaoke or singing experience? Oh gosh. It was the sixth grade talent show. I sang "Hey Jude" a cappella. After my sixth grade talent show, from there on, I became less nervous on stage, but before that I would not sing for anybody. And so my dad forced it. He's like, "Just do the talent show." So I was just completely still singing a cappella, just by myself. It was scary.
Finale Preview: Get hot scoop on 39 must-watch season-enders
7. What's your favorite album or song that you're listening to currently? I listen to a lot of John Mayer, every day. A lot of his old stuff and then some of his new stuff.
8. What song or artist made you want to be a singer? I don't know if it was really an artist. I think just growing up listening to a bunch of music. We had a stereo room and [my dad] had so many songs and so many CDs. ... I just remember always hearing James Taylor and Electric Light Orchestra.
9. What's your biggest musical guilty pleasure? I have a Justin Bieber song on my phone. I can't delete it. You know when he did that Christmas song, "Mistletoe"? I downloaded it. This was like two or three years ago.
10. What's one song you would have loved to perform on Idol that you didn't get to? For the most part, I performed a lot of the songs that I wanted to perform. But I guess it would be cool to perform an original on the show. I did during Hollywood Week, but later on the live rounds.
American Idol airs Wednesdays at 8/7c and Thursdays at 9/8c on Fox.