Phillip Phillips, the boy so talented his parents named him twice. This 21-year-old American Idol Season 11 contestant grew up in Sasser and Leesburg, Georgia, and made it all the way to his season's finale. It was in his Savannah audition, when Phillip performed an animated rendition of Stevie Wonder’s hit, “Superstition,” that the judges first took notice, but they weren't the only ones. It's safe to say that America fell in love with him right then and there.
According to Albany Uncovered, Phillip started playing music when he was 14, and is a frequent performer in Albany, Georgia, gigging with the band G&S or with his younger sister. In addition to singing, Phillip also plays the bass, piano, and drums. Phillip names Dave Matthews, Johnny Lang, Mumford & Sons, and Tool among his musical influences.
With unconventional taste like that, he made some bold song choices during his time on Idol. Some, like Dave Matthews Band's "The Stone" or Matchbox 20's "Disease," didn't go over so well the judges. But his gamble on lesser-known tunes like Damien Rice's "Volcano" definitely helped launch him into the finale show. Not that the Season 11 heartthrob ever lacked support from voters! He was the only contestant to never have touched the Bottom 3 or 2 during the show. Plus, he's even captured the hearts of celebs like Julianne Hough (never mind that she's the girlfriend of Idol host Ryan Seacrest).
But American Idol certainly wasn't been an easy road for Phillip: He was plagued with kidney problems during his time on the show. Despite the pain he's was in, Phillip soldiered through and even underweent surgery after the finale show.
Pitted against pint-sized diva Jessica Sanchez in the Top 2, it was difficult to choose between the two formidable finalists. But Phillip's performance of the original song "Home" during the first half of the Idol finale all but proved that he had a serious chance of taking home the crown.
On May 23, 2012, a record 132 million votes declared Phillip the winner of American Idol Season 11! He reprised his winning song at the end of the finale but teared up before finishing the song. As the backing band continued playing the closing strains of "Home," Phillip left the Idol stage to hug his family in the audience. It was an emotional end to a long yet worthwhile journey for the talented singer.
Since his big win, Phillip released his debut album, The World From the Side of the Moon, and has been performing around the country. And if you're curious if he has a girlfriend (and we know you are), the answer is... click here!