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Associated Press
Phillip Phillips’ “The World From the Side of the Moon” is in stores.

Depite hit, ‘Idol’ winner Phillips still grounded

– With the success of his debut single, “Home,” Phillip Phillips isn’t just the dude who won “American Idol.” He’s the dude with that folk-rock hit, according to the fans he’s met.

“People are like, ‘You’re the guy with the song “Home,” ’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah, yeah.’ They say ... ‘So do you have any other music out?’ I’m like, ‘There are some covers.’ ‘What from?’ I say, “American Idol.” ’ ‘ You were on “American Idol?” ’ ” he recalled.

“There was a lot of people who didn’t even know I was on ‘Idol,’ ” he continued. “I think that’s cool.”

The 22-year-old talked about his music, being laid-back and the insta-family and friends who have surfaced since he won the “Idol” crown in an interview with The Associated Press.

Q. What do you think of the comparisons of “Home” to Mumford & Sons’ music?

A. People are always gonna compare somebody to somebody else, but I think when people hear the album it’s not gonna remind them of Mumford & Sons too much because I’m a little more rock and, you know, they’re very folk and they’re amazing.

Q. Most “Idol” winners haven’t had success like Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood. Does that make you nervous?

A. I mean, if it doesn’t do well it wasn’t meant to do well. ... I’d be upset for a little bit, but it’s just what it’s meant to be. I can only hope for the best. I can’t make anybody do anything. I’m nervous about it definitely, but all I can do is hope that it does well.

Q. How’s your health? (Phillips had major kidney surgery when he won “Idol” this year.)

A. I’m doing great. I’m tired, but staying busy. This reminds me, I have to get a doctor’s checkup.

Q. You were so low-key about your health issues while on the show. Was that intentional?

A. I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me or anything on the show or vote for me for sympathy or anything like that, so I tried to keep it on the DL as much as I could, but the show likes that kind of stuff and they said, ‘We’re gonna put it (out),’ and I can’t really say no because I signed some papers that they could show just about what they wanted to. So, yeah, I tried to keep it as low-key as possible.

Q. Do you find a lot of people came out of the woodwork after seeing you on “Idol”?

A. People that were saying they were cousins and good friends with my friend’s friend whose friend of another friend and my grandma’s sister’s other half-sister’s baby’s child. I’m like, ‘Nice to meet you finally.’

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