By People Staff
Updated December 01, 2020 03:48 PM
Credit: Stephen Shugerman/Getty; Frederick M. Brown/Getty

Paula Abdul is “thrilled” that old friend Kara DioGuardi is joining her as the fourth judge on American Idol.

“It’s about time another girl joined,” Abdul told PEOPLE Monday at the U.S. Open opening night celebration in Flushing, N.Y. “More girl power.”

Abdul, 46, who has been an Idol judge for the past seven seasons, says DioGuardi’s songwriter and producer experience will bring a different mix to the table. “She’s going to be a little more different and more from the industry standpoint.”

This isn’t the first time the pop singer has worked with DioGuardi. The two wrote a song for Kylie Minogue called “Spinning Around.”

Despite initial reports of a dustup after Abdul told a Phoeniz, Ariz., radio station Monday, “I am concerned about the audience and their acceptance … time will tell,” both Abdul and DioGuardi say there are no hard feelings.

“Anybody with the right brain would say something like that,” DioGuardi told reporters yesterday.

But will adding another female judge take the spotlight away from Abdul? “No,” says the singer. “This is great for the show. I’ve been waiting for this. I really have and will love her. She’s great!” —Jeffrey Slonim and Paul Chi, with additional reporting by Monica Rizzo

Stephen Shugerman/Getty; Frederick M. Brown/Getty