Sanjaya was prevented from singing Joplin’s “Mercedes Benz” because Ford sponsors Idol

Sanjaya Malakar’s post-eviction exit interview with the press today offered little insight, other than that Sanjaya has little insight to offer. He said banal, Paula Abdulish things such as, “My philosophy was to stay true to myself and just try to put my personality out there,” according to the AP, and “I balanced the negative and the positive just to keep myself grounded. I think I’ve learned not to let any negativity get to you,” according to USA TODAY.

As to Sanjaya’s future in entertainment, he isn’t only set on torturing us with his voice. “I’m definitely looking at a music career, but I also want to venture into acting, modeling, possibly Broadway. I want to get the full entertainment career,” he said.

He’ll also attend the White House Correspondents Association Dinner this weekend as a guest of People magazine, The Washington Post reports.

Regarding the campaigns to keep him around because he sucks, Sanjaya said, “I don’t think Vote for the Worst or Howard Stern had enough people voting for me enough times to make a dent in anything. The reason why I’m here is solely because of my support from my fans,” according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Most scandalously, however, Sanjaya says his song choice was vetoed because the show is sponsored by Ford. The AJ-C’s Rodney Ho writes, “I asked him whether Bonnie Raitt’s ‘Something to Talk About’ was his first choice. It wasn’t. He wanted to sing Janis Joplin’s ‘Mercedes Benz’ but since Ford is a sponsor, the producers said, um, no.”

In earlier interviews, producers suggested that song choice was up to the contestants assuming the song could get cleared by the people who own the rights–not by the people who cash advertisers’ checks.


Sanjaya looks at life after ‘American Idol’
[AP]
Sanjaya offers his two cents [USA TODAY]
Sanjaya Coming to D.C. [Washington Post]
Sanjaya “kind of knew” he was a goner [Atlanta Journal-Constitution]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.