American Idol's Naima Adedapo: Being with My Family Again Is 'Beautiful'
Plus: The Milwaukee-based singer says she's ready to relocate and she'll miss her friend, Jacob Lusk
After a mostly impressive evening of Elton John covers, 55 million votes were cast this week on American Idol. But inevitably, after Casey Abrams received the only save of the season last week, two singers were sent packing.
Naima Adedapo, who converted “I’m Still Standing” into a reggae tune and got lukewarm reviews, and Thia Megia were called out by Ryan Seacrest as the contestants with the lowest number of votes.
Adedapo spoke to PEOPLE about reuniting with her family, her best friend on the show, Jacob Lusk, and what she’ll miss most – shopping!
Steven Tyler had quite a soft spot for you. How did it feel to have him in your corner?
That was really amazing and touching for me. I just respect how much he is who he is. He doesn’t care and that’s what I love about him. He’s real. It’s touching to have someone of that magnitude really believe in you and really root for you.
Have you been reunited with your family yet?
I have. I actually reunited with them after the show last night, which was beautiful. I just hugged my children and laughed with them and kissed them. It felt so good. I missed them a lot. It was really good to see my motivation. They are that for me.
What’s next? Will you relocate or pursue music from Milwaukee?
We’re definitely going to relocate. I really don’t like the cold. I feel like you can do much more when there’s not three feet of snow on the ground. I actually would like to have a house in the mountains somewhere where the children can go outside and connect with the Earth.
How has being on the show changed you?It has given me more confidence to believe in myself and my artistry. But what you saw on the show is really who I am, which is actually a shock to me. I was afraid to come to Hollywood because I felt like I was going to be molded into something. But they really embraced who I am as an artist.
Did you build any lasting bonds with any of the other contestants?
Hands down Jacob [Lusk], who I was closest to. We connected in Vegas. He is really about having faith and we connect on that level. He is an amazing spirit. He is one of a kind. We would go and check in with each other and sing our songs to each other and say, “How do you feel about this? Do you think this is good?” I am one of the only people who could check him and put him in line when he was getting over the top. I would give him a good pop on the head and he would straighten up. I can’t see not talking to Jacob or hearing his goofy laugh and being able to vent to him. In this competition it’s hard to confide in people and he was that go-to person for me where I could just vent and he understood and didn t judge me.
What will you miss the most?
I’m actually going to miss shopping the most. I’m really going to miss that. I love creating these outfits and the accessories and the shoes. For me that was when I got to release and relax and be a real human being again. In the competition there is so much pressure and you’re always thinking about what song you are going to sing and your performance. But when you go shopping you get to be like a kid in a candy shop and release and walk through the mall and be regular for a bit. And it was a major perk getting all of the clothes.