American Idol

‘Reality Check’: Tyanna Jones Talks ‘Stay’, Short Song Lists, Prince Rejection (VIDEO)

TVLine.com‘s resident reality TV expert Michael Slezak is back with a Reality Check exit interview with American Idol XIV fifth place finisher, Tyanna Jones!

In this exit interview, Tyanna Jones discusses her trip through the American Idol process this season, from the decision to audition for Idol this year, to the struggles she faced in the early rounds. In addition, Tyanna goes over her choices for virtually every theme week, from Kelly Clarkson Night to American Classics and even her powerful rendition of Rihanna’s “Stay”. In the process, she gets the chance to discuss the ludicrously short song lists for the show, noting that some of her most old fashioned song choices were chosen due to a lack of anything else even remotely appealing to sing. Interestingly, she also details her attempt to break out beyond the confines of the paper thin song list, recalling how she asked production to clear a Prince song, only to discover that the legendary singer denied clearance. Tyanna goes on to discuss her family, her musical identity, how far she thinks she can make it in the music industry, and her emotional American Idol elimination, including why she started crying.

Check out the full exit interview video with Tyanna Jones below:

'Reality Check' Tyanna Jones Talks 'Stay', Short Song Lists, Prince Rejection (VIDEO)

It’s a terrific interview, and very down-to-Earth, as Tyanna somehow manages to become even MORE likable than she was on Idol. Say what you will about his divisive opinions on Reality Check, but I think Michael Slezak is a fantastic interviewer. This was a lot of fun, particularly some of the backstage anecdotes, such as how the contestants never knew that the Arena Anthems theme was called “Arena Anthems”. Turns out, they were told the theme was “Stadium Singers,” hence why so many of the finalists chose songs that, while performed by arena megastars, were far from anthemic.

I also think it’s crazy that, fourteen freaking seasons in, we’re still having to address the nightmarishly thin song lists these contestants are given. You’d think by now they’d be able to clear more than 30 songs per theme, but apparently not. And if that Prince story is true, then I guess I can see why, since some singers are just plain stubborn about their music being used on reality singing shows, even if there is a tangible benefit in bringing those songs back into the spotlight. Of course, I wonder if the producers even asked Prince, or if they just told Tyanna they did to keep from having to shell out the cash for a new song. Because I know “Purple Rain” and “When Doves Cry,” at least, has been used on plenty of reality singing competitions before (albeit, most of those competitions took place in Australia. Maybe Prince just has some sort of ill will towards the American music industry? I have no idea).

Anyway, I hope the best for Tyanna in the future. I’m glad that she’s confident in her potential in the music industry, and that she’s remained humble throughout this entire experience. She really is one of the more likable contestants the show has had in recent years, and she seems mature beyond her years.

But what did you think of the interview? Sound off in the comments!

And for more reality TV news, follow me on Twitter: @NickRomanTV

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