Credit: FOX

Vino Alan has been one of the biggest surprises of this season of X Factor, since the moment he first opened his mouth to sing for the judges. And it sounds like he plans to keep surprising America. For example, did you know he’s a “hopeless romantic?” It just goes to show you should never judge a book by its face tattoos. 

Speaking exclusively with Wetpaint Entertainment at the Top 12 finalists party in Los Angeles on November 12, 2012, Vino let us know what we can expect from him this week, which contestant he’d love to duet with, and how American armed forces might just be the secret weapon that helps him win it all.

What can we expect from your song choice this week?
Hooooooo!! You know I’m lovesick — maybe you don’t know that. I’m a hopeless romantic. So this week is like, I’m so excited about this song, but it’s not going to be so sappy, “When a Man Loves a Woman”-sappy. But, you know, it’s more ballad-y.

It seems like a lot of the contestants are slowing it down this week.
What’s weird is, like, you’re going to think it’s slow, I’m trying to give you something but not give it away, and it’s going to get your blood pumping. It’s a very sexy, romantic song, maybe one of the biggest ones of all time.

Credit: Facebook

At this point, do you think [L.A. Reid] understands you as an artist?
Finally? Like he didn’t in the beginning?

Yeah, it seemed like you were just misunderstood in general.
He’s very genuine like me, you know, so I know every time we talk he really does get me and tells me how special I am. Like, to have Lil Eddie and him tell me there hasn’t been a voice like mine in 40 years in music?!!

How do you react to something like that?
Well, for me personally, it steps me up to where I just I don’t think I can get a big head like that, you know what I’m saying? Like, I’ll work harder to be there, you know?

What do you think you can do to get more votes?
Well, I can’t do anything different. Of course we’re going to rock out, not Nickelback rock out. I love Nickelback, but I can answer in two ways quick. I’ll say just keep doing what America is feeling already — and just make sure it’s bringing out the essence of me, right? Heart and soul. Number two, I got a lot of messages from the troops saying they haven’t even gotten started yet. So I’m like, wow, if they haven’t even gotten started voting yet, like, yeah.

If you could duet with one other contestant on the X-Factor who would it be and why?
Probably Emblem3, because we’ve already wrote stuff. Talk about being misunderstood — they’re on their way to being pop stars like they say that I can’t be, but they’re also very organic, good dudes. But I think me and [Paige Thomas] would kill a song.

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Credit: IdolxMuzic on YouTube Photo: Watch Vino Alan Sing Percy Sledge's "When a Man Loves a Woman" on The X Factor Live Shows Week 2 November 7, 2012 (VIDEO)