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New York City, New York, United States | SELF

New York City, New York, United States | SELF
Band R&B Soul


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"IdolInterviews:Keanna O'Quinn"

Okay IdolPhenomena followers it’s been awhile since we’ve had an interview but here we go. I recently received some feedback from Keanna O’Quinn about her Idol experience; which I will be sharing with all of you this evening. I would like to start this post of by wishing Keanna a Happy Birthday because April 18th is totally her Birthday- which I was unaware of until earlier today. So Happy Birthday from IdolPhenomena.

IP: Since you did not receive a whole lot of air time this season could you please describe what the audition process was like for you?

KO: The audition process was fun, but nerve racking!!! I was so happy to be singing in front of the American Idol judges. But I was dealing with a major allergy attack at the time and my voice was just not working that day. On top of that I was around other contestants who were super nervous and so I found myself calming them down. Basically, I knew that day was do or die and I was determined to make it to Hollywood!

IP: How has the overall audition affected your life and music today?

KO: I've always been the type of person who loves critical feedback so I took the opportunity to listen to what the judges had to say to apply it to all of my performances. But just knowing that I was able to go and audition in front of the toughest judges in the country to make it to the Top 70 has given me so much confidence in my musical ability today. As cliché as it may sound, it taught me to conquer my fears--that I really can do whatever I set my mind and heart to. That's something my parents have always taught me, and now it all makes sense.

IP: Do you have a notable memory to share with the IdolPhenomena followers?

KO: I would say my most notable memory was the feedback that Ellen gave me after singing Etta James' 'At Last'. It was the first audition night of Hollywood Week and we had to perform our songs solo. It was really late and the judges and contestants were really tired from the long day of auditions. I was one of the last people to sing and when I was done she said with a big smile "Wow! I was really tired and was falling asleep and you just woke me up. Your voice is amazing!" I felt like I was on top of the world.

IP: Have you auditioned for any other reality TV shows in the past?

KO: When I was in college I went to a preliminary audition for The Real World. I was obsessed with the show.

IP: I see that social networking has allowed many of the Idol contestants stay in contact is there anyone in particular that you like to keep in touch with?

KO: I am still in touch with Becca Neun. I actually just recently got back from visiting with her in Florida. I also still keep in touch with Brittany Starr James, Theri, Mary Powers, Thaddeus Johnson, and my boo Todrick Hall.

IP: What type of project are you currently working on?

KO: Right now I'm focused solely on my music and its so exciting! I've already done school and the career so when I got back to New York from Idol I decided to just go for it! So I'm working on my debut album right now as well as a web-based reality show that chronicles me on my grind through this music world. It's called 'Almost Keanna'. I got the idea for the title from the new Alice In Wonderland movie. I'm also doing a bit of performing throughout NYC. I will have my website up very soon, but right now you can keep up with me via Twitter by following @AlmostKeanna, or you can join my Facebook Fan Page.

IP: What type of advice would you give someone that wants to try out of Idol?

KO: I have three pieces of advice for anyone who is considering auditioning for Idol. The first is to be confident. The judges can smell fear. Literally, they can tell when you are unsure of yourself. So confidence is key. Second, I would say to have thick skin. You may not get the positive feedback you want from the judges. This means that you need to be able to bounce back and move on if things don't work in your favor. Last, have fun and smile! Make the best of the audition so that you have no regrets later.

IP: Who is your role model and how have they inspired you?

KO: My mother and father are my role models. They are my best friends. My mom is kind and giving, but unbelievably strong and resilient. And she is ALWAYS there when I need her. If I can be half the woman she is, I have accomplished a lot in life. My dad is really hard-working and determined. He's taught me to always have faith in God and to be persistent. With his help, I have accomplished a lot of the goals I have set for myself. My mom and dad are superheroes, for real.

IP: Do you have a have a favorite contestant from anywhere in the audition process?

KO: My absolute favorite contestant is Ski Boski from this season's audition process. He was so funny I was seriously in tears listening to him banter with the judges. Ski Boski, where are you??

IP: Which Idol is currently playing on your CD/MP3 player?

KO: Fantasia is on heavy rotation on my iPod--her second album. Can't wait to get the new one.

IP: Any other additional insights and comments would be great.

KO: Just be on the lookout for me! I'm bringing a fresh, new sound to R&B/Soul music and I'm so excited to share it. Be sure to follow me @AlmostKeanna to get the latest updates on my performances.

- IdolPhenomena Blog


Beautiful Lies--2012
Foo Wop--2013



Chicago native, Keanna O’Quinn cites gospel as an early source of musical inspiration. With that as a strong, soulful beginning, Keanna made her way to New York to develop a contemporary sound that is all her own. To her credit, Keanna impressed American Idol judges as she advanced to the show's Top 80 on Season 9. Her most recent accomplishments include performing at the world famous Apollo Theater, singing the National Anthem for Brooklyn Senator, Kevin Parker's Annual MLK Day Celebration, and the 100th Year Anniversary of New York's Grand Central Station.

Presently, Keanna tours the country performing with her band, Honey & Vinyl. In addition to touring, she is completing a recording project. Her February 2013 debut single, Foo Wop, reached over 1K YouTube views in less than a week.

By creating new rhythms & through musical storytelling, Keanna’s sole endeavor is to share her unique, powerful gift of song.