Credit: Michael Becker / FOX Photo: Kree Harrison American Idol Top 8 Performance

Country sweetheart Kree Harrison had a blast last week on American Idol 2013 singing Aretha Franklin despite a somewhat mixed reaction from the judges. This week she’ll have to find out how to fit her country vibe into a rock ‘n’ roll theme, but if she follows the advice of Idol alum and Dancing With the Stars competitor Kellie Pickler and stays true to who she is, we’re sure it is going to be a memorable performance no matter what!

 

Kree Harrison spoke about her American Idol performance last week in a press interview after the show and spilled the dish on what she and buddy Kellie Pickler plan to do if they both manage to win their respective reality show competitions this year!

 

Q: Did you feel like you were doing it up there?

A: I had a blast! Not just closing the show but the song is so sassy. I don’t know, I love Aretha Franklin so I’m just glad that the judges, for the most part, like it.  Randy was like ah, ah, ah, ah.

 

Q: They kind of worked around their words, what did you feel about getting that kind of critique even though they were giving you kind of a mix?

A: Honestly, I had fun doing it, I don’t want to say whether or not they liked it because obviously that’s important to me but you know I just really hope that America liked it and that they voted because I had a ball singing that song.

 

WP: Talk to me about the duet and what you said to each other backstage afterwards?

A: First of all we’re all compared 24-7, you know, we’re in a competition. But to be compared right next to each other on a fun duet song, two country singers don’t necessarily cover Madonna every day.  So we had fun doing it, sincerely. We’ve always wanted to sing with each other so that was the cherry on top of the night. You know Janelle is flawless, she got up onstage and reminded people gracefully as to why they love her and I was bowing down to her when she got off because I was so proud of her.

 

Q: How does it feel to be standing next to a person when they are tearing them down?

A: I mean it’s flattering but not at someone else’s expense. It’s a little bizarre but I just hope if I’m here and I continue to stay here that if I do a duet it doesn’t happen again and they just say you had fun and we saw that and that was cool. Rather than that was better, you suck.

 

Q: Can you tell me a little bit about the order of having to do a duet before you do your big number?

A: I was freaking out a little.

 

Q: Do you think it’s fair that they do it like that or should they let everyone sing and then do the group stuff afterwards?

A: It doesn’t matter what I want anyway. Personally because it was such a fun song it didn’t….if it was a power ballad duet then I would be like I really wish that I could sing this after my solo so I could save my voice but it was just fun so I didn’t have a problem this week.

 

Q: When you went out for your solo were you thinking of the fact that Smoky may have called Aretha?

A: of course I was! First of all, I’m still on cloud nine from meeting him. I don’t think people like really understood how much of a big fan I was of him. No lie I sang “Shop Around” when I was 6. I had a little Motown cassette tape and that was one of the songs on it. So that alone was amazing but for him to go "Oh I’m just going to call Aretha."

 

WP: You told him that you were trying not to make him feel uncomfortable!

A: I did because I have met a lot of people, you know being in Nashville you see people walking down the street and you know people and your acquaintances with celebrities but nothing like this, I’ve never ever felt so star struck. I think it’s because he’s had such an influence on my career, not on my career but my music.

 

Q: Was it tough hearing the boys get such a critique for their group performance?

A: I didn’t hear it because I was running backstage you know trying to get onstage. I didn’t hear it but I heard it was harsh.

 

Q: I heard you ran into Kellie Pickler, you guys know each other?

A: She is one of my good friends. I am proud of her. Have you seen her? I was like Okay!

 

Q: Is she voting for you and you voting for her?

A: Yeah! We have decided that if we win, which I know she is going to win Dancing With the Stars, so we decided we were going to go get matching tattoos.

 

Q: What are you going to get?

A: I don’t know!

 

Q: How long have you two known each other?

A: A couple years through a mutual friend in Nashville.  She is a doll, I adore her and I grew up with her husband. She is literally the sweetest woman; she is inspiring in so many ways, not only her story but just as a person. She’s very sincere.

 

WP: Did she give you any advice going into the show?

A: Yeah she did. More so than anything stay true to who you are. You know I’ve gotten that a lot because I am a humble person and that’s because I have been in the industry somewhat and this doesn’t happen and I appreciate every minute of it. So it’s not going to change. It won’t just because I’m surrounded by such amazing people in my life that wouldn’t let me much less why would you not want to be a humble person?

 

Q: Are you two meeting in the hallway?

A: Yes we are.  She’s come and met everyone too. She loves Janelle; they remind me a lot of each other. They’re witty; they’re both really witty.

 

Q: What is your favorite performance from Idol’s past? What sticks out in your mind?

A: Okay let’s see, GOD there’s so many and a lot of them I didn’t watch them consistently but I saw a bunch of them. I would say Haley Reinhart. She sang “House of the Rising Sun” and I don’t know I love her voice and how it still sounds like Haley if she sings a Motown song or a country song or whatever it still sounds like Haley so that’s what stood out to me always.

 

Read more on Kree Harrison or visit our American Idol news page for all the latest spoilers, gossip and more!