An Interview With "Supawoman" Kimberley Locke
With a new show and a new album on the horizon, one of our favorite Idol finalists, Kimberley Locke, is back and busier than ever.
As a judge on MTV's biggest Little Talent Show, Locke dispenses singing advice - while attempting to keep a straight face. Her new album, Based on a True Story, is ready for release "God-willing" this March.
The TV blog TV with MeeVee had the pleasure of interviewing Locke over the phone this week. With the help of some of her most diehard fans, here is the scoop on what's now and what's next for this bona fide "Supawoman."
TV with MeeVee: Tell us about your new show, MTV's Little Talent Show.
Kimberley Locke: The show is a lot of fun, the contestants have to sing, dance, and act. I have to say that the title is indicative of the talent. These contestants come on the show and tell us how great they are, comparing themselves to Mariah and J. Lo and Justin. It just goes to show that peopleâs perceptions of themselves are everything.
TV with MeeVee: It kind of reminds me of the early rounds of American Idol.
Kimberley Locke: Thatâs exactly what it is.
TV with MeeVee: I love your reaction shots, they keep cutting back to you, whatâs going through your mind?
Kimberley Locke: Sometimes I have to ask, can these people not really hear themselves? And by doing this show I realized that they canât. Thatâs what being tone deaf is.
TV with MeeVee: Youâve hosted a show on Game Show Network, and now youâre doing MTV. Is this something you want to continue with, television?
Kimberley Locke: For me, yeah absolutely. From the very beginning, even when I was on Idol, I wasnât really focusing on winning the show. Yes, I would have loved it if I had won. Everyone wants to win, but I focused on staying on the show as long as I could to get the exposure. I realized being able to stay in this industry over the long-term means you have to diversify.
TV with MeeVee: It sounds like that business degree has really come in handy â that and a lot of E! True Hollywood Stories...
Kimberley Locke: Itâs nice to be known for something other than singing, because people know me and will always know me as a singer first. I was a model for Lane Bryant.
DeNeva: Howâs that going? Are you going to continue being one of their spokesmodels?
Kimberley Locke: Iâve been with them for a year and a half. I havenât renewed the contract yet. Just the fact that I got to do it for a year or two - I was very excited.
TV with MeeVee: When you were on American Idol, did you feel pressure to lose weight or change your look in general?
Kimberley Locke: I didnât even think I had a weight problem until I got to LA. You canât help but think about it. I finally got to a place where I was like, "You know what? This is who I am and Iâm happy with who I am," You know, itâs a personal challenge because Iâm happy with myself either way. I think thatâs whatâs hard for people to accept, when a person is happy with themselves even when theyâre not that perfect size 6. The more Iâm in this industry, the more I realize how important image is.
TV with MeeVee: Do you have any advice for girls who want to pursue acting or singing that donât necessarily possess the Britney Spears Body?
Kimberley Locke: A lot of it is confidence. I tell people you have to be comfortable with yourself because this industry has a way of breaking you down. When I was doing Lane Bryant there were a lot of ladies and young girls that would come up to me and say "Youâre not a plus size model," and I would say to them, "Iâm not a plus size to you, but to the industry I am." I try to tell women all the time, it doesnât matter what size you are, love yourself, like who you are, and then if one day you decide you want to lose the weight, then lose the weight. In the meantime, be happy with yourself.
TV with MeeVee: After American Idol, you and Clay Aiken hooked up as roommates, do you still hang out?
Kimberley Locke: I talk to Clay on the phone and we do exchange emails, but I havenât seen him in so long. Itâs kind of a shame, but you know weâre busy. If I were to see him today, weâd pick up right where we left off.
Gabby: Have you seen or spoken to Frenchie Davis since she left American Idol?
Kimberley Locke: When the scandal went down, I was so disappointed that she got kicked off. She came back on the show once after that. I havenât really talked to her since, but I know sheâs doing well.
Brianna: You did a duet with Clay on your last album, One Love. Would you ever consider doing a duet with Ruben Studdard?
Kimberley Locke: Absolutely, Ruben gave me so much flack about that duet with Clay (laughs). So I owe him one.
TV with MeeVee: What inspires you as an artist?
Kimberley Locke: Before the show, I guess what inspired me was just the way [music] made me feel. Now that Iâm on the other side of the picture, my fans inspire me. They have a way of putting things in perspective, when they come up to me and say, "That song, it really meant something to me." You donât realize how much your music affects peopleâs lives. If you ask people at any given point in their lives what they were doing when they had their first kiss or first dance, they can remember what music was playing.
TV with MeeVee: Any particular memory you want to share?
Kimberley Locke: My brother had this really cute friend, and his name was Todd. I canât remember the exact song, but every time I hear it that memory pops up in my head. Itâs like an old Phil Collins song.
TV with MeeVee: Tonight, Tonight, Tonight...
Kimberley Locke: Exactly! (laughs)
TV with MeeVee: Letâs talk about your new album, Based on a True Story. How do you think it differs from One Love?
Kimberley Locke: Itâs very different in that I wrote all the songs myself except for one or two. I had so much input and the songs are very personal.
TV with MeeVee: Your first single is "Supawoman." How would you define a Supawoman?
Kimberley Locke: "Supawoman" is one of those songs that I wrote a little bit out of frustration. Can you handle me as I am, who I am, with everything that comes along with me, my career, my confidence, my independence? There are a lot of guys out there that canât. I guess when I wrote that song I was dealing with it quite a bit.
Tyson: Any potential release date for the album?
Kimberley Locke: Weâre releasing a Christmas single around the holidays and then in January we release the next single "Change." God-willing "Change" makes a big splash on the radio,and the album will come out in March.
Brianna: Several celebrities have made the decision to step away from the spotlight for a while and focus on themselves. Do you see yourself doing the same in the near future?
Kimberley Locke: Yes, I do. I think that you have to step away. You have to take time for yourself. When Iâm out and about with my friends, my family, if my fans come up to me, I start to work. So I understand why celebrities take that time off because you have to do something for yourself.
TV with MeeVee: What are your favorite TV shows?
Kimberley Locke: Ooohhh, Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, Girlfriends. Iâm hooked on Girlfriends. I want to be on that show so bad. I love that show. I am so Joan. Joan is a perfect example of a Supawoman. Sheâs a lawyer, sheâs smart, sheâs independent, and she just cannot get her love life together. Iâm a cartoon fanatic. Iâve been watching The Proud Family which is on Disney. I love to watch Scooby-Doo, also The Smurfs and the Fairly Odd Parents. I watch a lot of cartoons (laughs). If I'm watching TV, I'm watching cartoons.