Jordin Sparks has a few reasons to celebrate this summer.
Sheâ€™s the newest champion of American Idol, on the path to being rich and famous, has a national tour lined up with her fellow finalists - and she got a hot new car!
Not bad for 17.
Sparks chatted with Us Weekly about her newfound fame, what went on during her Idol â€œgirlsâ€™ nightâ€ tradition and more. Here are some excerpts:
Us: You have frequently said how when you turned 16, it wasnâ€™t the chance to drive a car that excited you, but rather the chance to audition for American Idol.
Jordin Sparks: It was. Itâ€™s been really amazing because having watched the show for so long, Iâ€™ve just been like, â€˜I want to do that,â€™ but I was too young. So I just watched the show and I saw what songs really got people going and what songs didnâ€™t. Being up on that stage was one of the most amazing things ever.
Us: Has the fact that you're the American Idol hit you yet?
Jordin Sparks: It hasnâ€™t really set in yet. Itâ€™s been crazy. People keep saying, â€˜Hey, weâ€™re on the air with the new American Idol, Jordin Sparksâ€™ and Iâ€™m like, â€˜What!? Can you repeat that?â€™ Itâ€™s crazy, Iâ€™ve always wanted to do it and now that I have, I canâ€™t believe that I did. I couldnâ€™t ask for anything more. Itâ€™s so much fun.
Us: Not only did you take American Idolâ€™s crown, but you were also gifted with a new Ford Mustang on the final results show.
Jordin Sparks: I woke up on my 16th birthday and I was more concerned about auditioning for American Idol than driving a car. I did get my driverâ€™s license eventually, but now I can drive and I am the American Idol and I have a new car! This is so weird. I havenâ€™t driven it yet. I know driving will be kind of scary, because the paparazzi will follow me. Crazy!
Us: Your father played in the NFL, so you must remember the media attention during his football fame. What advice did he offer about your own celebrity?
Jordin Sparks: Since my dad has been famous-ish and has gone through having paparazzi and stuff like that, he told me â€œItâ€™s fun, but at the same time youâ€™ve got to be careful. People will try and use you. Itâ€™s scary, itâ€™s hard, but if you just handle yourself well, and trust the people around you, youâ€™ll be fine.â€™ So far, so good.
Us: On the show you were very close with Melinda Doolittle, who finished in third place. Since you two were roommates, what types of things did you discuss during your â€œgirlsâ€™ nights?â€
Jordin Sparks: It stays in girlsâ€™ night! We did talk about boys and stuff like that. [smiles] We talked about life in general and about each othersâ€™ lives. We were living under the same roof for I donâ€™t know how many weeks. I asked her how she grew up and what advice she can give me, because sheâ€™s so much more experienced than I am. I just love her so much â€“ sheâ€™s so amazing! So yeah, we talked about boys, the competition, and crazy fan things that happened.
[SIDE NOTE: Boys? Who here thinks they discussed their mutual adoration for Sanjaya Malakar? Yeah, we agree. Who doesn't love that goofball.]
Us: Did Blake Lewis happen to teach you how to beatbox?
Jordin Sparks: He tried really hard to teach me. He goes â€œOkay, do this [starts beatboxing].â€™ And thatâ€™s how I beatbox. Thatâ€™s all I can do.